Skip to content



Actual tests of websites on e-accessibility in all EU member states plus Norway, USA, Canada and Australia took place, and were published.

The report is based on the international guidelines WCAG 2.0. This means that the study mainly concerns the technology and doesn’t cover cognitive aspects, content or on how interfaces work on mobile devices nor the accessibility in documents. The report thus can’t be read as an absolute measure of web-accessibility, but more like a temperature check based on cluster sampling.

The overall result of the survey is a disappointment. Relatively easy things fail in many places, for example marking up the headings properly. More recent requirements, which came with WCAG 2.0 in 2008, are even less implemented.

There are differences between the countries, but, there is no country which can be described as good. We were hoping that the EU member states would learn from each other and be inspired from good examples, but that doesn´t seem to be the case.

One conclusion is that the most successful countries are those who have managed to combine several things:
– Legislation or policy which is not too technically detailed but more focused on individual rights;
– A well developed industry with a high level of accessibility competence, also among end user organizations.

WAI invites comments on the First Public Working Draft of Applying WCAG 2.0 to Non-Web Information and Communications Technologies (WCAG2ICT). This draft document provides guidance on how Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 can be applied to non-web information and communications technologies (ICT), specifically documents and software. It does not discuss whether or not WCAG 2.0 should be applied to non-Web ICT. For this draft, WAI particularly seeks comments on: * The overall approach of the document. * The “Additional Guidance” in this draft. * Additional key terms to be defined in this document. * Is it necessary or helpful to provide guidance on applying the principles and/or guidelines? (This draft currently provides guidance only for success criteria.). Note that only the success criteria are used for determining conformance to WCAG 2.0. Please send comments on this draft to the publicly-archived mailing list: *by 7 September 2012*.

A new advanced draft of the EC-mandated (M376) European Standard EN 301 549 has just been published for commenting. See in particular chapter 9 for the web and chapters 10 and 11 for applying W3C WCAG2.0 also to electronic documents and software applications interfaces, and the related annexes C9 to C11 for verifying conformance. Comments are due by 15th September 2012.
See also:
– The first draft of the W3C Note on Applying WCAG 2.0 to Non-Web Information and Communications Technologies, e.g. to electronic documents or software applications, has just been published for commenting:
– The draft of the W3C Note on Website Accessibility Conformance Evaluation Methodology (WCAG-EM) 1.0: (a more advanced draft is expected shortly for further commenting).

The focus of web accessibility is often on web development – the things that happen in HTML, CSS, or JavaScript after a site has been designed visually. Optimal accessibility should start much earlier, as part of the visual design process. WebAIM created an infographic that highlights a few important principles of accessible design.

Web Accessibility for Designers infographic with link to text version at

View an accessible version of the infographic above, courtesy of Chris Throup.