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How can I make the BBC’s websites more user-friendly?

A keyboard viewed under a magnifying glass

Some visitors to the BBC’s websites may need additional help to access the content on offer. In this short guide, we’ll tell you where you can find information to make bbc.co.uk more accessible.

WebWise Team | 10th October 2012

There are a number of ways to make the BBC sites easier to use if you have any of the following:

  • a sight or hearing impairment
  • a condition that makes it difficult for you to use the mouse or keyboard
  • short-term memory loss
  • difficulty concentrating for long periods of time
  • a reading disability, such as dyslexia
  • a learning disability

My Web My Way

The BBC site My Web My Way explains how to make simple changes on your computer to make websites easier to use.

My Web My Way tells you:

  • How to see the screen more clearly.
  • What to do if you can’t hear the audio.
  • How to make your mouse or keyboard easier to use.
  • How to use your keyboard instead of your mouse.
  • How to replace your keyboard or mouse altogether.
  • How to use your voice to work your computer.

The tips that you’ll learn should also work on other websites that you visit. This is because bbc.co.uk and many other sites have been designed according to international guidelines for web accessibility.

Web accessibility is a term that describes websites that have been designed with the needs of everyone in mind, including disabled people. If you have tried the tips suggested by My Web My Way and still find a website difficult to use, it may be inaccessible because the people who designed it didn’t follow accessibility guidelines.

BBC iPlayer

BBC iPlayer is an online service that allows you to listen to live programmes or catch up with your favourite BBC TV or radio show via your computer.

You have probably noticed that most BBC TV programmes can be accompanied by subtitles. Some programmes are also available with British Sign Language. Others have audio description, which provides additional commentary on the on-screen actions that a blind person would miss.

If a programme is available with subtitles, British Sign Language or audio description when it is broadcast on TV, then it is also available with these accessibility features when it is viewed on BBC iPlayer.

BBC Ouch!

Ouch! is a popular blog where disabled people gather to share stories and information with other disabled web users. The blog posts and comments below are a great place to find out other disabled web users' experiences of using the web.

The BBC is committed to ensuring that everyone can access its websites. If you experience a particular problem using any part of bbc.co.uk, get in contact and report the problem.


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WebWise Team

WebWise was first launched in 1998 and since then has helped people of all ages to learn about and love the internet.