This article was written in 2017. It might or it might not be outdated. And it could be that the layout breaks. If that’s the case please let me know.
I created a first iteration of a little tool I plan to use. Or to be more precise, a tool I hope you will use every now and then. It’s inspired on a project Manon Mostert – van der Sar made, where she asked makers in het maker’s lab to log their failures in a booklet. I ask you to log design decisions that influence accessibility on a website. And I call it Journa11y.
What does that mean?
I remember from the days when I used to work at a web design agency that accessibility was not on top of mind. Not for designers, not for developers, not for management. At most a handful of frontend developers cared about it a bit. In this particular agency frontend developers were not part of the design team, and many decisions that influence accessibility were taken and finalised long before anybody started building the thing. Awareness of accessibility was non-existent in the design team. Some awareness did exist in the frontend team but not very much direct experience.
I don’t work in an agency anymore, and I don’t create products for others than myself. So I have no idea what work looks like nowadays. That’s where I can use your help.
What can you do?
- If a new feature is discussed and accessibility is not mentioned, please let me know.
- If accessibility was discussed but dismissed for whatever reason, please let me know
- If accessibility was discussed and implemented thoroughly, let me know.
- If you made an inaccessible thing accessible, secretly or with help, do let me know.
But I can imagine there are many other things you could share.
So I am interested in the little things. Why was accessibility not important? Or why was it? And who decided that? What happened? Or what didn’t happen?
I’m also interested in longer complex logs. Whatever you want to share.
Logs can be extended or tiny. I can imagine receiving things like
Created yet another inaccessible monstrosity. The art director is incompetent.
We created a new complex interaction pattern with inclusive design in mind, tested it with all kinds of people and it works. Wasn’t more work than anything else I ever did.
Anything you want.
I might contact you with a few questions after a while. And I might paraphrase the things you said. I’ll always make sure that it’s impossible to trace it back to you. Unless you give me permission to do so, of course.
You can also use to give me feedback on Journa11y itself of course.