WebAIM - Web Accessibility In Mind

E-mail List Archives

Re: WebAIM-Forum Digest, Vol 208, Issue 24


From: Pyatt, Elizabeth J
Date: Jul 26, 2022 12:07PM

I would add the lang="ja" tag.

Technically speaking Japanese is written in four scripts and "rōmaji" is one of them. In English mode, some screen readers may not know what to do with a vowel with a macron on top.

You can also send a test file to the student if they are willing to check it. The student will need to install a Japanese voice on the screen reader, but that's gotten a lot easier.

Hope this helps. Let me know if you have any questions.


P.S. Having worked with a Spanish course, I can attest that having Spanish read out with an English voice is not sufficient for the learner.

On Jul 26, 2022, at 2:00 PM, <EMAIL REMOVED> <mailto: <EMAIL REMOVED> > wrote:

From: Murray Inman < <EMAIL REMOVED> <mailto: <EMAIL REMOVED> >>
Subject: [WebAIM] Best practice for language markup
Date: July 25, 2022 at 9:11:10 PM EDT
To: WebAIM Discussion List < <EMAIL REMOVED> <mailto: <EMAIL REMOVED> >>
Reply-To: <EMAIL REMOVED> <mailto: <EMAIL REMOVED> >

Friendly greetings!
In an introductory Japanese course, there are several places where Japanese
words are written out using "rōmaji" which basically is the
pronunciation of the word written out using Roman characters. For example,
The Japanese word *ローマ字* would be written as *rōmaji*.

Would the best practice, both semantically and accessibility -wise, be to
add the lang="ja" attribute to a wrapper <span> element? HTML code example:
<span lang="ja">rōmaji</span>

My thinking is that yes, it should have the lang attribute because it is a
Japanese word. Anyone have any experience with the accessibility aspects of

Thank you for your help!

Murray Inman

Manager, Instructional Media and Accessibility

VP, Ability Maricopa Employees with Disability Advocacy Group

480-517-8561 | <EMAIL REMOVED> <mailto: <EMAIL REMOVED> >

RIO SALADO COLLEGE | https://riosalado.edu<https://riosalado.edu/>

2323 West 14th Street, Tempe, AZ 85281

Definition of "Accessible" <http://learnatrio.com/accessibilityDefined>; by
the Office for Civil Rights

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-Elizabeth J. Pyatt, Ph.D.
Accessibility IT Consultant/Lead Trainer
Penn State IT Accessibility
Office of the Deputy CIO
<EMAIL REMOVED> <mailto: <EMAIL REMOVED> > (General accessibility questions)

25 Shields Building
University Park, PA 16802