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Cost of inaccessibility (Was: Thoughts towards an accessible <canvas>)


From: Mark Magennis
Date: Mar 23, 2009 9:20AM

On 23 Mar 2009, at 07:50, Benjamin Hawkes-Lewis wrote:

> On 23/3/09 06:15, John Foliot - WATS.ca wrote:
>> What is the price for non-conformance?
> Well, in that particular case, the price would be similar to the costs
> of other instances of inaccessibility:
> 1. Loss of audience, with the attendant loss of funds or influence.
> 2. Denial of the audience's rights, with the attendant ethical,
> social,
> and legal risks.

I would add, depending on the product or service provider:

3. Increased manitenance costs. Accessible websites are generally more
easily maintained.

4. Cost of serving excluded users through alternative channels. This
can be significant for public bodies that have no choice but to serve
all customers, such as the social welfare office. Previous research
has claimed that the relative cost to government of handling customer
transactions through paper, call centres or online self-service is
100/10/1. For private companies these costs surface in the form of
increased customer support needs (although this may not actually be a
cost, depending on how the company runs its support).

5. Cost to the public purse of dealing with social and economic
exclusion. The lack of accessibility of online resources leads to
reduced opportunities for education, employment, health information
and social interaction for example. This can lead to greater
dependency on welfare, increased health care needs and less
contribution to economic activity, which reduces GNP. All these
represent significant drains on the public purse.



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