Broadcasters and content creators have been urged to consider the accessibility of their critical communications following the outbreak of coronavirus.
Following the Government imposed lockdown and its hosting of daily public service briefings, user experience and accessibility agency, Sigma, has urged broadcasters and content creators to consider the needs of all demographics when creating essential resources.
Images and videos shared by television stations, news outlets and social media accounts have lacked translation and explanation for those with disabilities, including hearing, sight and cognitive impairments.
This also extends beyond the government’s daily briefing and includes key information published by essential services, such as healthcare and utility companies.
Toolkit of free resources
To combat this problem, Sigma has created an accessible content toolkit of free online resources to improve the inclusivity of communications, and ensure they can be accessed by everyone.
The toolkit includes information on the importance of video captions, transcripts of audio and video clips, image and video descriptions. The guide also includes free tool suggestions and walkthroughs of how to start applying them to content.
The tools and tips will also help people and teams who are new to home working, as it’s vital their corporate communications, meetings and employment updates are inclusive for all employees.
Hilary Stephenson, managing director at Sigma, said: “It is fundamental that everyone in society has the same access to information, especially in situations like the current Covid-19 pandemic. Information that could prevent the spread of the virus and even save lives is inaccessible to many with disabilities, as it does not consider the needs of all users. It is a health risk for individuals to not be fully informed.
“There are more than 1 billion people living with some form of disability worldwide, with 14.1 million living in the UK. We urge all content creators to consider these tools and steps when creating and sharing content. Not only for those registered with a disability, but those who are not yet registered, as well as our ageing population, which is at higher risk of the virus. Increasing inclusivity could mean the difference between life and death!”
For more information about Sigma’s toolkit of free accessibility tools, click here