A Round Up of Celebrations, Awareness Building and Commitment to GAAD 2021

A yellow sign with #GAAD written in blackGlobal Accessibility Awareness Day 2021  (#GAAD) took place on May 20 this year and we put together some tools and resources to encourage partners, publishers and industry bodies to promote awareness from home offices during lockdown. Building on activities from previous years we saw our industry actively up their game this year and get more involved in educating colleagues and customers who are busy playing their part to increase the availability of digital content to people with print disabilities, despite the challenges of a global pandemic. Congrats to all who took the time and made the effort to reaffirm their commitment to accessible publishing by marking this event in some way.

Our Publisher’s Toolkit saw large numbers taking part in our fun Accessibility Quiz – slightly more challenging than last year and it was great to see so many comments on social media about the questions! You can still access the quiz and use it to promote awareness and to compliment other accessibility activities that you may have in mind for your colleagues. In fact, all of our suggestions are appropriate for any time so please carry on the good work!

OUtline of a calendar to signify an events listingA Few of the Events Held this Year

  • Inclusive Publishing Partner RedShelf celebrated GAAD with the webinar: Accessibility Metadata – A Digital Textbook Superhero.  Focusing on the “unsung hero of digital content”, RedShelf emphasised how good accessibility metadata is crucial for a successful course materials strategy.
  • Kogan-Page took the opportunity to post a case-study on the occasion of GAAD entitled, Accessible Learning: Why eLearning is Not Always Enough a first-hand learning experience from Esi Hardy, a disability inclusion expert.
  • Mc-Graw Hill used their blog platform Behind the Cube to introduce their accessibility team and to delve into what accessibility means to this department – a great way to increase awareness in-house and to promote the activities of the accessibility team. In addition, the article Creating Accessible Experiences For All Learners was published to coincide with GAAD 2021, including a video to create further discussion.

This Global Accessibility Awareness Day, McGraw Hill acknowledges the importance of accessibility and the responsibility we have to ensure all learners can use our content.

  • Hederis, book production platform, made sure that their customers and readers knew about their commitment to accessible publishing with the publication of 3 articles in the run up to GAAD together with the launch of a new alt text editor for @HederisApp.
  1. It’s never too soon to think about accessibility and it’s never too late: A Q & A with Rachel Comerford
  2. Accessibility Throughout All Phases: A Q & A with Ka Li
  3. Global Accessibility Awareness Day: A Quickstart Guide

Signpost icon on a yellow poster indicating links Links and Resources

The following links were published for GAAD – they might not all be publishing related but we think there are some valuable take-aways here for our industry:

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 and we’d welcome feedback on news and information from other sources that may be of interest to our readers.

W3C Releases First Public Working Draft for Specification for Spoken Presentation in HTML

Announcement from the W3C:

“The Accessible Platform Architectures (APA) Working Group has published a First Public Working Draft of Specification for Spoken Presentation in HTML from the Pronunciation Task Force. This document is part of W3C work on pronunciation to provide normative specifications and best practices guidance so that text-to-speech (TTS) synthesis can properly pronounce HTML content.

This First Public Working Draft specification describes two possible technical approaches for author-controlled pronunciation of HTML content, using Speech Synthesis Markup Language (SSML).

Either approach will satisfy our accessibility requirements. However, we seek to establish a widely applicable approach. W3C is therefore seeking more input on these approaches, particularly from content authors and implementors who would convert the authoring techniques described into aural presentation. Please send comments by 18 June 2021.”

How to Grow Your Accessibility Maturity-for HE and FE Professionals

May 26th, 2021

AbilityNet is delivering this 2 hour course on how to take a strategic and joined-up approach to improve outcomes, reduce culture and change the culture of your organization with regards their accessibility focus.

Date

May 26th, 2021

Venue

Online

Learn More

To book a ticket for this training session visit the AbilityNet event page.

Accessibility Metadata-A Digital Textbook Superhero! RedShelf Webinar for GAAD

May 20th, 2021

Join Inclusive Publishing Partner, RedShelf, on May 20th as they recognize Global Accessibility Awareness Day (GAAD) by unmasking the powers of accessibility metadata. Learn how RedShelf and this hidden hero can play a big part in defining your course material decisions in a digital-first world.

Date

May 20th, 2021

Venue

Online

Learn More

Register here for the RedShelf webinar

London Book Fair 2021

June 21st to July 2nd, 2021

The London BookFair 2019 plays host to a number of events which will be of interest to our inclusive publishing audience. The decision has now been taken to hold this event virtually, once again and we will update this page as programming details become available.

Date

June 21st – July 2nd, 2021

Venue

Online

Learn More

The London Book Fair site has information on programming and registration.

Frankfurt Book Fair 2021: Accessibility Now Seminar

October 20th to 24th, 2021

Frankfurt Book Fair is one of the most important marketplaces worldwide for printed and digital content and a great social and cultural event. Publishing experts, writers, and supply chain contacts from the creative industries across the world come together and Frankfurt becomes a hub for the media and publishing industry. There is always an exciting focus on accessible publishing and we will keep our readers posted as these details become available. This year there will be a practical session entitled: Accessibility Now Will You be Ready for the European Act in 2025. A stellar line up of speakers will focus on two simple questions: what do publishers need to do and how can they do it? In addition the ABC Excellence Awards for Accessibility will be presented at this event.

Date

October 20th – 24th, 2021

Venue

Frankfurt, Germany

Learn More

Keep up to date with scheduling and events at the Frankfurt Book Fair website.

Further information on the detailed seminar can be found at the Accessibility Now event page

Digital Book World 2021

September 13th to 15th, 2021

The popular mainstream publishing and technology conference, Digital Book World 2021 will feature presentations on a range of topics. We look forward to updating you on this event.

Date

September 13th – 15th, 2021

Venue

Nashville, Tennessee

Learn More

The Digital Book World site gives up to date information on programming and registration for this event.

Accessing Higher Ground 2021

November 15th to 19th, 2021

This 5 day virtual conference, presented and hosted by AHEAD focuses on the implementation and benefits of:

  • Accessible media, Universal Design and Assistive Technology in the university, business and public setting;
  • Legal and policy issues, including ADA and 508 compliance.
  • The creation of accessible media and information resources, including Web pages and library resources.
  • Universal Design and curriculum accessibility.
  • Best practices for web design, reaching untapped audiences through accessible design, and compliance with existing and anticipated Section 508 and ADA stipulations.

Look out for presentations from DAISY colleagues at this event

Date

November 15th – 19th, 2021

Venue

tbc

Learn More

Visit the AHG event website for further information including access to resources from last year’s conference

Deque Basic Accessibility Fundamentals Bootcamp for GAAD 2021

May 20th, 2021

In celebration of this year’s Global Accessibility Awareness Day, Deque is offering free training of its basic accessibility fundamentals bootcamp.

This training provides an overview of basic accessibility concepts, such as why digital inclusion matters and how people with disabilities use the Web. Through this training, participants will develop a better understanding about how disabilities affect a person’s experience online, as well as a high-level introduction to the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.1 (WCAG).

Date

May 20th, 2021

Venue

Online

Learn More

Registration and scheduling information are available at the event website.