Society of Scholarly Publishers Annual Meeting

May 29th to 31st, 2019

The SSP’s annual meeting is presented this year with the theme Shaping the New Status Quo: Global Perspectives in Scholarly Publishing. The conference is keen to focus on the inclusion of new voices within ongoing conversations—not just geographically but with any new perspectives that help publishers move together toward a new age of scholarly communication. What new technologies will be at work in the new status quo? How will publishers continue to meet the needs of authors and readers, especially in previously underrepresented markets?

Two sessions are of particular interest to inclusive publishing readers:

  • Why Inclusion Matters to Technology and Technology Matters to Inclusion—The Keynote this year is being delivered by Betsy Beaumon, Benetech
  • Digital Equality: The Importance of Accessibility in Your Publishing Strategy


May 29-31, 2019


San Diego, California

Learn More

Find out more about how you can register for this conference and full programming information at the SSP Event website.

Accessible Publishing: A Snapshot of Success—Are You in the Picture?

icon of a cameraThis has been a vibrant couple of years for accessibility in publishing, and we look forward to even greater things as Born Accessible publishing becomes part of our mainstream requirement.

Publishers should work on this now, build the necessary elements into their workflows, and reach a more diverse audience. Join the DAISY party!

George Kerscher , Chief Innovations Officer at the DAISY Consortium and Sarah Hilderley from Inclusive Publishing were pleased to publish this article with BISG. In this brief report they look at how far we’ve come as an industry in our challenge of creating born accessible mainstream content and they highlight the various tools that are available to developers and publishers to help with this challenge. The full BISG article is available here.

Accessible Publishing and the Marrakesh Treaty: Event Report from the Buenos Aires Book Fair

Logo for the Buenos Aires Book FairThis year the 2 day Copyright Seminar held at the Buenos Aires Book Fair the 25-26 April (Feria Internacional del Libro de Buenos Aires—FILBA) included a seminar on Accessible Publishing  and the Marrakesh Treaty.

Pablo Lecouna Director of Tiflonexos and Julian Calderazi, DigitalBe’s head of digitalization, gave a general overview of the activities of the Accessible Books Consortium, discussing accessibility, EPUB, Disability and Implementation including common problems together with the benefits of producing born-accessible content.

Mr. Lecouna discussed the history of Tiflonexos and it’s free library for visually impaired consumers in the Spanish language (Tiflolibros), the Marrakesh Treaty and his participation in it elaborating on its advantages alongside ABC’s mission.  Julian Calderazi presented the benefits of Accessible EPUB production workflows for publishers and consumers and  emphasizing the responsibility of content producers.

Both Pablo and Julian encouraged publishers to start building accessible content into their products from the beginning of the production process, sharing their knowledge and experience and making it clear that accessibility in publishing can be achieved with little significant effort. They both impressed upon delegates that it is timely to consider accessibility now and that Latin America can benefit from born accessible publishing now.

This report was kindly submitted by Julian Calderazi, DigitalBe. Since 2010 Julian has worked in the development of different standards relating to ebooks with numerous organizations including BISG, IDPF, W3C and currently in the Publishing Business Group, Publishing Working Group and the EPUBCheck task force within Publishing@W3C.

Global Accessibility Awareness Day 2019: A Success All Round

Logo for Global Accessibility Awareness DayGlobal Accessibility Awareness Day 2019  (#GAAD) took place on May 16 this year and we put together some tools and resources to encourage partners, publishers and industry bodies to promote awareness. Building on last year’s activities we saw our industry actively get involved in educating colleagues and customers and playing their part to increase the availability of digital content to people with print disabilities. We are pleased to say that this good work has not just been confined to one day and we continue to see thought provoking events taking place around the globe.

Selecting a few to highlight in this report:

  • Houghton-Mifflin Harcourt once again made sure that accessibility was at the heart of their working day on May 16. Combining problem solving discussions with fun activities throughout the day, Katy Mastrocola and team used GAAD as an opportunity to highlight the importance of collective understanding and commitment.

Katy Mastrocola and team











  • TextBOX Digital made us think about the user experience in a world without image descriptions—a strong and thought provoking message.

A tweet from textBOX urging readers to use image descriptions oherwise it's like seeing a blank box for print disabled readers











  • Kobo held a mini-conference in their Toronto offices with an exciting agenda. In addition to some stellar speakers Wendy Reid (Kobo) organized  3 challenges  for colleagues—keyboard navigation, different web views, and screenreader usage. A fantastic way to impart a message and to create discussion.

Kobo employees particpating in challenges on GAAD














  • Macmillan Learning continued to show their commitment to accessibility with an interactive workshop Make Some Noise: Design and Build Your Own Educational App with Sonification.  Read about Macmillan Learning’s recent announcement —they are the first publishers to gain accreditation through the Benetech GCA program and they published this banner on GAAD to re-affirm their commitment from their CEO, Ken Michaels.

Macmillan Learning banner for GAAD showing commitment from CEO











  • RedShelf prepared a webinar for GAAD—Born Accessible: Ensuring You’re Adopting Accessible Course Materials. On college campuses across the country, only half of the students with accessibility needs register with their DSO. How do educators ensure digital course materials are accessible to everyone? This recorded webinar is relevant to any campus, bookstore or publishing professional interested in learning more about accessibility and how it impacts digital course materials.

These are just a few of the fantastic events that took place throughout the day and we hope to be able to build on our toolkit for next year and prepare more resources for you to use. In addition to publishing industry events there was a huge effort worldwide from other digital organizations. Laura Patch, Digital Marketing Specialist, wrote The Power of an Accessible Web—Global Accessibility Awareness Day which reminds us all:

Anyone working in the digital space, from editors and writers to your back-end developers, must hold themselves accountable to make their content accessible to everyone.

Congratulations to everyone who took part in GAAD!

DBW—Have You Submitted your Nominations for the DAISY Accessibility Award?

Nominations for the Digital Book World 2019 Awards have now begun and we anticipate some exciting nominations for The DAISY Award for Accessibility in Publishing.

Make sure you’ve submitted your entries by July 19!

AIPI Launches Accessibility Guides in Australia

The Australian Publishers Association has launched 2  publications this week as part of the Australian Inclusive Publishing Initiative (AIPI)—Making Content Accessible and Inclusive Publishing in Australia: An Introductory Guide. The AIPI aims to develop a greater awareness of the needs of people living with a print disability, to communicate the laws that govern access to published content, and to build publishing industry capability in producing accessible digital books that are inclusive by design.

To read about these guides and download them in a variety of formats visit the AIPI website.