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Making BBC Online accessible to all

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Steve Herrmann Steve Herrmann | 13:19 UK time, Wednesday, 27 April 2011

The BBC has relaunched its My Web My Way accessibility pages, which contain information about making BBC Online and the wider web easier to use. There's a post about it on the BBC Internet blog from Jonathan Hassell, head of usability & accessibility.

Steve Herrmann is editor of the BBC News website.

Comments

  • Comment number 1.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 2.

    Steve, I think it's great that the BBC makes an active effort to provide for those that are disabled in some way. Not only in terms of web accessibility and related online features, but also in terms of actual programming and promotion of the disabled arts as can be seen by Charlie Swinbourne's recent post on disability websites. I'm based in Africa at the moment and sadly here, the disabled are given little consideration beyond what they need for basic survival.

    Anna (Social issues blog)

  • Comment number 3.

    The BBC's has been quite exceptional and consistent in its approach to include the disabled as best possible with their initiatives. For me, the highlight in the last year with respect to this was the great coverage of many aspects of disabled life in anticipation of the UN disabled person's day on 3rd December - everything from societal attitudes and employment issues and technology opportunities.

    Accessibility is one area where I believe the BBC's efforts cannot be faulted.

  • Comment number 4.

    Equality of accessibility for all can never be 100% due to individual variances and restrictive websites but BBC goes a long way to increase equality of accessibility for many which I am glad my TV fee helps towards.

    It must be terrible to be constantly faced with so many points of restrictive access hence I hope many other websites also create greater accessibility as a matter of course.

  • Comment number 5.

    For me, the highlight in [Unsuitable/Broken URL removed by Moderator] the last year with respect to this was the great coverage of many aspects of disabled life in anticipation of the UN disabled person's day on 3rd December

  • Comment number 6.

    Steve, I think the new additions to My Web My Way are great - especially the jargon buster section and the informational videos.

    @#2 Anna Sempe - I think the BBC is probably the exception rather than the rule when it comes to catering for the disabled in the UK (not as bad as things in Africa no doubt, but you'd be surprised at how badly many disabled people are treated in UK - esp those with 'invisible' disabilities)

  • Comment number 7.

    If BBC online give access permission to all , it would be great for world wide people if they give us the i-report opportunity by signing system than people could able to post there true story directly to the i-report editor for survey & Post ,If editor think Vetted story then post to the BBC web link.. it has given more opportunity to free lance journalist for post there true story by assignment wise post Article, Blog & massive current news direct to the host of BBC .

  • Comment number 8.

    Anwarul - I agree with you although I'm not sure you get what this post is about (i.e. making the website more accessible to disabled readers). Sure your point is valid though, if the BBC had a way of opening up for community journalism it would be really a much richer site..

  • Comment number 9.

    Can I ask the BBC an important question?

    Why is it that the BBC is NOT opening up debates on the REALLY BIG issues much more and what we are actually seeing is that the Have Your Say section is now being used for relatively minor issues - for example it fails to challenge the big issues on spending cuts, the poor performance of the coalition government in this country and instead focuses on SAFE issues - like the Royal Wedding, for example! Are that many people REALLY interested in an event which primarity affects a minority of privileged people??
    Why is that and why is the licence payer not getting better value for money on this?

  • Comment number 10.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 11.

    @sledger10 - I agree to some extent (and with due respect to those that have disabilities - I am by no means suggesting that the updated My Web My Way pages are not important). The Have Your Say pages seem to be increasingly focused on relatively 'safe' non-controversial topics. It would be great to have the bigger issues such as those around Osama getting killed opened up. I find it quite peculiar that the media is rejoicing about the death of one man without even examining the relevant adjacent issues around his death - notably that of America's foreign intervention without permission. It would be really interesting to even pose the question on HYS about what the public feels will happen next in terms of terror given Osama's death.

    On the topic of this post though, I do believe the BBC sets the standard in terms of how best to include those with sensory impairments. The jargon buster and the videos both go a long way to enhancing the pages and making them easier to understand what new features have been added.

  • Comment number 12.

    Steve, I don't think the general public is aware about quite how much the BBC does when it come to social inclusion for the disabled - one of the most under-rated initiatives that deserves a lot more publicity is Ouch!, the BBC's online disability magazine.

  • Comment number 13.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 14.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 15.

    I have just looked at the headlines, one of which is "Hamas and Fatah to ink unity pact". This is nonsense. I know it looks clever, but is unbelievably out of date to use "ink" to mean "sign". This is the BBC not 1930's Variety sub-editing. How are people who are not Americans to understand the slang?

  • Comment number 16.

    How long does it take for this site to be updated? Today, we still have April 27 entries as the latest... seems a pity.

  • Comment number 17.

    or... how about showing latest entry at the top and
    older ones further down?

  • Comment number 18.

    @JayBee - I think, unfortunately, that the 27 April was the last post on the editor blogs up till now (they do show the latest blogs entries at the top of the BBC editor blogs page) .. perhaps the editors are all recovering from the Royal Wedding? :)

  • Comment number 19.

    You know what, I find that alll of a sudden all of the important news stories of the day are closed to comments. Suddenly I feel like I am living in Syria. Unless you do something to fix this quickly I'm going to change a lifetime opinion that the BBC is a good thing for the UK. Are you really so stapped for cash that you cannot record and publish public opinion any more? I am astonished by the current crack down on publishing the views of the people on HYS. Do I really need to start using Al Jazeera's forums?

  • Comment number 20.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 21.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 22.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 23.

    All this user's posts have been removed.Why?

  • Comment number 24.

    Oh come on. You can't make it accessible to *all*.

    What about new-born babies and those in PVS for instance?

    Let's just say "more", shall we?

  • Comment number 25.

    Most people can view the BBC site if there is flash installed but what about all those people with mobile devices, due to my PC dying on early December I have to use a mobile device that dose not allow flash the only thing I can access is the iplayer.

  • Comment number 26.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 27.

    Likewise many online content developers will likely have experienced the challenges ... The BBC treats accessibility seriously and aims to make all of its web based ... creativity in the act of making one of its many sites accessible.
    -------------------
    [Unsuitable/Broken URL removed by Moderator]

  • Comment number 28.

    I suggest that as editor of the BBC News website, you remove all stories that claim "a Twitter user tried to unmask some celebrities who obtained super-injunctions to prevent details of their private lives being published". http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-13344514

    This is incredibly out of date "news", considering there were plenty of users outing the same names over two weeks ago, and this users tweets were only created on the 8th of May. The only new name on that list was Jemima Khan, which was false.

    It's making you look like an old and past-it news source. Maybe put Alex Hudson in charge, because he called it ages ago, but that made no TV headlines - http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/mobile/technology-13159193

  • Comment number 29.

    It is appalling that you talk of accessibility to the BBC yet I can find no place on your website for the comment below I sent to the Today programme. I am beginning to think of stopping paying the licence fee and just using iplayer as many of my friends are now doing. It would be in protest, as Radio 4 particularly is not interactive which is such a frustration as so many of its programmes 'invite' comment. Such comment would be useful as often listeners can add background to that which we have 'been fed' by programme makers. See below my message to Today that I cannot share with other listeners and cannot hope of a response from the programme editors.

    .....Is there any hope that anyone will read comments? Re Radio 4 Today programme

    Re Today prog item 0733 11 May 2011
    "Ahead of a national day of action, it is becoming increasingly apparent that Greece may have to default on its debts" etc,

    Could you not have given more time to the trade union leader to explain the case? Can you imagine having to explain something in Greek and not being given time? Indeed, can you imagine any one of our union leaders trying to explain anything in another language? Could not Today editors/ presenters realise a big underlying problem is high interest rates? could not Today address this issue per se that is killing us all and find out who these 'greedy b'stards are' who are killing their golden goose and us all in the process? Good luck To the trade unions of Greece and everywhere who try to raise the fundemental issues... you should not cut them off mid stream just for 'the bloody papers' as it makes for a boring 3 hour long programme (that I now dip in and out of according to your running order). thank you. PS how can one interact with Today on Facebook? Is there any hope the the BBC will allow meaningful interaction with licence payers?

  • Comment number 30.

    29. At 08:54am 11th May 2011, pithywriter

    There is another perspective on the possibility of Greek default, that I found quite interesting, here:
    http://tinyurl.com/43e9qv3

  • Comment number 31.

    sorry, but I don't get it. I can read a zillion opinionated comments anywhere. I want decent content from the bbc.
    Nick Robinson's followers don't interest me - his writing does. I'm sad to see this change.

  • Comment number 32.

    CAN I SUGGEST AGAIN - That the BBC focuses on the key IMPORTANT news items on the Have Your Say website NOT TRIVIA/non important news items!!!
    - Today there is a key speech by Cameron on the NHS and there is NOTHING on your website about that! Why not? We should be debating this and putting pressure on this Tory led destruction of the public sector.
    - Why doesn't the BBC "show it's teeth" more - that's what us licence payers expect! Don't give us the trivia - give us the real life issues!

  • Comment number 33.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 34.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 35.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 36.

    I've read that the British Government is applying Ofcom regulations (as a pretext?) to impose penalties on Press TV & the independent London-based Press TV Ltd.
    Apparently Press TV is preparing to make public its side of the argument against Ofcom, but many believe Ofcom's move is just another attempt to limit Press TV activities.
    Personally, I like the different perspective presented by Press TV because I often find western media biased.
    WikiLeaks Feb 2010 that Britain was "exploring ways to limit the operations of… Press TV". Recently, the National Westminster Bank froze Press TV Ltd's business account without prior notice saying the accounts would be permanently closed in twelve months.
    So, I have to wonder: is the foregoing related to the new BBC blog format, its restrictions on input and the difficulty in being able to find the blog sites in the first place? Is BBC really trying to make BBC online accessible to all?

  • Comment number 37.

    Between the Moderation Committee and the Communities Committee the BBC certainly gives the impression that alternative perspectives are not welcome.

    They do not shoot you for saying that UK foreign policy sucks..they just delete your post and threaten your posting priviledges. So that is a lot better than in many parts of the World so Cheers for the Brits and the BBC...which used to be the best news source in the World and is still up there but these days no source can qualify as being the best.

    I plan to set up a web site for code translation so that folks can post on the BBC without having their posts removed. It should be a lot of fun and perhaps profitable.

    So thank you BBC for the opportunity.

  • Comment number 38.

    In order to Rate a blog - Readers must log-in

    I expect the reason is to protect us ALL from abusive Readers

    This protection becomes 'Censorship'

    The result of this kind of 'Censorship' is
    A Complete Lack Of Real Public Opinion

    Risking 'possible abuse' gets us closer to Real Public Opinion!

    20 bloggers respond to an article
    Are there not 'thousands' of Readers?

    Which is the greater abuse?

    I was taught that 'Nothing Is Written In Stone'

    Fully aware of my past comments regarding the 400 Character Limit
    And in the Spirit of Glasnost - I propose a 1000 Character Limit

    BBC keeps a Limit
    Bloggers will be hard-pressed for a reason to complain
    Readers will not have to slog through long-winded responses

    Win - Win - Win Proposal

    VOTE!

    Keep Proposal 'Highest Rated'

    'Power to the People'

  • Comment number 39.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 40.

    BBC Digital Radio is not continual and breaks up.

    BBC should not make false claims! BBC is not accessible as it claims!

    BBC is not accessible 24/7 as it claims.

    I am very disappointed!

    I use to get to listen to BBC on Air through my Ham Radio and just had to find the frequency and broadcast at that time. Now BBC stopped broadcasting to the USA.

    I am in the USA and listening to BBC RADIO 2 and it is breaking up and not continual. It makes for a very frustrating listening experience!

    (I have been listening to BBC since 1978.)

    Lee ki4jup.. Phenix City, AL. USA 36869

  • Comment number 41.

    Looked at your news 17.00 hrs 1st June.It was all about a game,a sport or an international racket.
    FIFA,began to question if FIFA paid for the coverage or if there were several Blatter's on the BBC news editorial team.
    Football was a sport when I was a boy.Now an industry or a financial racket.
    FIFA,Fit to run a bank or NATO?Why not might do better.

  • Comment number 42.

    I and a Diving Journalist, but I would like to post a general press release. Where can I do this?

  • Comment number 43.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

 

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