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Accessibility a external content


From: Christopher Phillips
Date: Mar 30, 2022 2:03PM

Hello everyone -“
I am stuck in a discussion around some accessibility policy that we are working and would be grateful for any feedback any of you might have around accessibility standards for external content.

Clearly any links or embeds need to be provided in an accessible way, but my question is more around the accessibility of that external content and considerations around linking to or embedding content that isn't accessible. Sometimes we can impact external content to make it more accessible (e.g. we can wrap our own captions around an uncaptioned video), but my question is around content where doing so isn't possible.

Generally we are more concerned about the content/experiences we manage and less concerned with external content that we link to or share, but there are some nuances that we are wrestling with:

1. Is there a meaningful difference between linking to external content (website, document or video) or embedding external content? For example, consider 3 uncaptioned YouTube videos on a page you own – a) a link, b) an embedded video on a channel you own, or c) an embedded video on a channel you don't own. Would treat any of those differently from others from a compliance perspective?
2. Or perhaps the way something is shared (embedded or linked) is less relevantand we should be looking more at how important or essential the content is to determine of it can be linked to or embedded?

We are also aware that policy decisions may impact some behavior – for example, if we were to require captions on embedded videos but not linked videos – people may decide to link to an uncaptioned 3rd party video rather than embed it even if embedding it would provide a better user experience.

Any feedback or experience is appreciated!

Christopher Phillips
Electronic and Information Technology Accessibility Coordinator
Center for Innovative Design and Instruction
Utah State University