The problem with inaccessible products

Greetings!  I’m Christian Robicheau, assistant editor at
Today, I am delighted to present you with an editorial by our president Donna j. Jodhan.  Today, Donna has a comment about inaccessible products being sold. 
I wish you a great day and weekend.
The problem with inaccessible products
As I see it, there are two important things that make a product inaccessible.
1. When the product does not have audio cues.
2. When there are no accompanying manuals in alternate formats.

A product may have audio cues but if the cues are not enough to make it possible for a blind person to use it independently, then it is not accessible.  This example can be used in the case of several hand held language dictionaries that are only half way accessible.  That is, only part of the command is spoken or only certain menus are audible.  In other words, there is no audible sound when keys are pressed and an audible response is only heard after the enter button is pressed.  This is what I call halfway accessible.
If a product is accompanied by a manual that is not in alternate format, then it is not accessible.  Or, if a product is accompanied by an incomplete manual or a manual that does not cover the entire set up of the product, then it is deemed to be inaccessible.  To make things less confusing, here is the picture.
For a product to be completely accessible, a blind or disabled person must be able to both use it and set it up or install it independently.  No sighted assistance unless the product is difficult to maneuver.  There also needs to be accompanying manuals in alternate formats; Braille, large print, CDs with no PDF formats or files in PDF format, and other types of audio formats. 
I have seen strides toward making products more accessible but we need more manufacturers to join the trend towards making products more accessible.
I’m Donna J. Jodhan wishing you a terrific day and weekend.
To reach me, please send an email to and I would be delighted to send you an electronic copy of our latest newsletter.
Here is a complete list of where you can view Donna’s blogs and editorials.
Donna Jodhan!  Advocating accessibility for all 
a weekly feature on important answers to consumers concerns
Weekly blogs for language professionals and accessibility consultants
A monthly editorial on issues on diversity
a monthly editorial on business issues and concerns 
weekly editorials on accessibility issues in Canada
Editorials:  An International perspective on issues of accessibility and disability (under the editorials section, an international perspective)
A general perspective on issues of access and accessibility 

About Donna Jodhan

Donna Jodhan is an award winning blind author, advocate, sight loss coach, blogger, podcast commentator, and accessibility specialist.
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.