TMR 2023: Why newsrooms should view accessibility as a default setting, not an add-on

Conversations from The Media Rumble 2023.

WrittenBy:NL Team
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In Indian newsrooms, accessibility for news products is still seen as an add-on, not a default setting. How can newsrooms make products that are accessible by design?

These were themes of “Making News Accessible”, a panel discussion at The Media Rumble 2023 that took place in Delhi on October 21. Moderated by Newslaundry’s Chitranshu Tewari and powered by Business Standard, panellists comprised Vineet Saraiwala, founder-CEO of Atypical Advantage; Sunayana Chaudhury, chief accessibility engineer at VMware; Shakul Sonker, cofounder of I-Stem; and Prashant Ranjan Verma, accessibility specialist at DAISY Consortium.

“One of the myths with accessibility is that it only serves people with disabilities,” Chitranshu said. “But doesn’t accessibility in itself make for a better product?”

Shakul said accessibility isn’t just a moral imperative, but also a sound business case. Sunayana said the “stepping stone” for accessibility is to “have a person who feels that empathy to build accessible products”. While Prashant explained how critical news had been inaccessible to people with disabilities during the pandemic, Vineet said organisations can easily implement universal design if they wanted to.

NewsAble, Newslaudry’s endeavour towards integrating accessibility and assistive technology with our website and app, was also discussed during the session. Check out more on NewsAble here.

Listen to the conversation here:

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