Many social media platforms are beginning to incorporate accessibility features.
- Images - Provide alt text or image descriptions. If tools for alt text aren’t available, describe images with text where you post them.
- Color - ensure that the color contrast for text meets minimum standards for WCAG 2.0 AA compliance. To check contrast, refer to WebAim’s color contrast checker. Do not use orange text or backgrounds. Use orange only as an accent color in graphics or include orange in photographs.
- Videos - Avoid using videos that only play music and show visual content. All videos should be captioned accurately; do not paraphrase. Turn off autoplay on videos.
- Use a URL shortener (such as tiny.utk.edu) to minimize the number of characters in the hyperlink. A short URL is easier for screen readers to handle and helps reduce the character count for character-restricted platforms.
- Capitalize the first letter of each word in a hashtag. This is called “camelbacking.” It’s the difference between #screenreaderdemo and #ScreenReaderDemo.
- Avoid using acronyms in your posts.
- Twitter allows users to add alt text. To turn this on, navigate to Settings > Display and Sound > Accessibility. Turn on “Compose image descriptions.
- In Facebook, include descriptive text when you post a photo. Use Facebook’s directions for adding captions to your page’s video.
- In Snapchat, plan your snap stories to make sure they make sense for all users. Use the larger text option for captions. Make sure there is good contrast between the background and the captions.
- Instagram doesn’t yet have alt text or captioning tools built in to its service. In Instagram, if you can’t add open captions (burned in text) to your video, use the comment section to add descriptive text for images and to provide captions and/or descriptions for video posts.
- YouTube provides an easy-to-use captioning tool for content owners. Do not rely on auto captions to work. Instead, use the captioning tool to correct auto captions, create your own within the YouTube interface, or upload a transcript or time-coded captions.