Digital Media Accessibility

It is critical to Lewis & Clark’s branding efforts that your content be accessible to all. Please help us create digital spaces that are welcoming by following these guidelines! If you see anywhere we could be doing a better job making our content accessible, please reach out to Digital Media Manager Devan Freeman.

Website

  • Always add a caption to your image so screen readers—assistive technology primarily used by people with vision impairments—can pick it up as alternative text and convert it into speech or braille.
  • Don’t upload PDFs to display content on your webpages. The text within the PDF may be inaccessible to screen readers.
  • Similarly, don’t upload an image that contains valuable information (like a graphic or flyer created on Canva) without also including the content as regular text on the page or in the image caption.

Social Media

  • Before posting a video, make sure it includes captions. Instagram is able to caption any video (while in Stories mode). To enable this feature, select the stickers section at the top of your recorded story. Then, select the captions sticker to automatically transcribe the audio of your video. Now you can post this video to your stories or download the video and add it as a post to your main feed.
  • Include image descriptions, especially when posting graphics, to ensure the information is accessible to anyone using a screen reader. You can use alternative text on platforms that have that option, or you can put the description right in the caption of a post. (Check out the Lewis & Clark Instagram account to see some examples of this.) Read your description out loud before posting. Could your audience still glean valuable information from the description, even if the image itself were absent?
  • Make any hashtags you include as readable as possible by using both uppercase and lowercase letters. For example, instead of #PIOTHEDOG, try #PioTheDog.
  • Limit your use of fancy fonts. Be aware that screen readers will voice the font names and styles. (To hear what we mean, check out what happens when a screen reader encounters a tweet with lots of specialty fonts.) When creating graphics for social media, ensure that your font is easy to read. The Office of Communications is happy to help you with this if you need assistance. We also recommend you check out our Visual Identity Guide for branding guidance.
  • Keep emojis to a minimum. Screen readers will say the meanings of your emojis out loud, so be sure to add a space between them—just as you would if they were words. 
  • If you’re interested in learning more about accessibility and inclusivity in social media, this article from Hootsuite is a great place to start.

Examples of Good vs. Bad Accessibility Practices

Good

Important event details (date, time, location, description) are included as regular text on the page, and the event graphic has a caption.

Example of an event in LiveWhale with good accessibility Example of an event in LiveWhale with good accessibility

Bad

Important details (time, location, description) are not in regular text on the page and are visible only in the event graphic, which does not have a caption. Example of an event in LiveWhale with bad accessibility Example of an event in LiveWhale with bad accessibility