The Big Hack: making online inclusive

8th November 2019

We’re lucky, and we don’t take it for granted

Positioning ourselves as a charity and not-for-profit focused agency allows us many opportunities which may otherwise have passed us by. We are fortunate to meet those who champion technology for good, those with admirable hearts of gold who strive to make the world brighter each and every day. Their inspiring work and attitudes are fuel to our studio - and that’s why we celebrate creative for good.

Event attendees raise hand in front of a presentation slide with a question

We recently had the privilege of being invited to Scope’s information event for their upcoming Big Hack. Scope is our new charity partner, and we will be donating studio hours to their Big Hack campaign. Scope strives to create a society where all disabled people are treated fairly and equally. They offer an extensive array of support services, host a resource and information online centre, facilitate an online community and much more. They truly are encompassing values close to our hearts… and then some.

Event attendees are stood together talking in small groups

The Big Hack

The Big Hack is focused on aligning disability access to the digital industries, essentially having the online world be open to those of any ability. It sounds like this should be given, however Scope informed us that 95% of charity websites and 96% SME websites fail to meet the legal accessibility standards.

And we were one of them - we’ll hold our hands up and admit that Scope taught us an invaluable amount regarding the small tips and tricks to create an accessible website. Small, incremental changes to our day to day designing and development which had otherwise passed us by, and will now be implemented as standard practice. We’re fully embracing The Big Hack’s teachings, and hope we can continue to spread the message in order to create a greater online experience for the UK’s 14 million disabled population.

Woman is talking in front of a presentation including The Big Hack logo

Inclusive design is the future

No more questionable contrasts in colour, autoplay videos, inaccurate media file names, no more website testing without using a screen reader, no more fancy words for the sake of sounding ‘smart’. Our official guidelines are being developed in the studio currently, and we will ensure these reach the breadth of our audience (and beyond!) upon their completion.

Wall art in venue saying disability game changers

Until the release, we would like to introduce you to the four key principles of our Web Content Accessibility Guidelines - with the easily memorable POUR acronym.

Perceivable - Can users perceive the content? Just because something is perceivable with one sense, such as sight, that doesn’t mean that all users can perceive it.

Operable - Are UI components navigable? For example if a component requires a hover state event to instantiate functionality that would not be possible with someone using a touch device or somebody who cannot use a mouse.

Understandable - Can users understand the content? Is the interface consistent enough for users to avoid confusion?

Robust - Can content be consumed by all required browsers? Does it work with assistive technology?

Session leader is holding papers and talking to two attendees

Further resources

The resources on The Big Hack’s website offer an easily digestible learning experience, and we highly recommend starting with their article Designing for disability: quick do’s and don'ts.

Thank you again to the wonderful team at Scope for hosting us for The Big Hack’s debut and allowing us to be a part of your journey. We’re eager to see what we can achieve together - and let’s strive to make the online world as inclusive as can be.

Infographic on the do's and don'ts of screenreader accessibility