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Going Beyond Better Than Nothing: Accessibility and Archives

Several truths exist. Humanity has written down a lot. Libraries archive much of it. Said archives tend not to be accessible. When you work in library accessibility, how to address disability access in archives is a common source for plenty of questions. What file formats best support screen readers and other assistive technologies? What standards exist and what do they require? How much work is required for making one document accessible? Thousands? How do you prioritize? Can work be automated through artificial intelligence such as optical character recognition? What are the costs? Who should do the work? This talk will aim to summarize years of conversations and experience on the topic. Key requirements, workflows, policies, and priorities will be presented alongside experience with implementations of various aspects. Most importantly, the needs and perspectives of disabled patrons will be shared and emphasized. Accessible archives must go beyond the basics of conformance and achieve an inclusive and equitable user experience.


10:55 AM
20 minutes