In this episode, Steph sits down with Senior QA Analyst Wendy Reid from Kobo to learn more about accessibility in ePubs. Wendy gives us a breakdown about what exactly accessibility in ePubs means for readers and creators, how an author can include accessibility features in their books, and how these features can empower someone to read. She also discusses her role in launching audiobooks for Kobo.

  • Wendy defines accessibility in ePubs and discuss they ways in which people can run into issues when trying to enjoy a print book.
  • Wendy discusses why she and people at Kobo are so passionate about accessibility.
  • Wendy talks about the feature’s authors can include in their titles to make them more accessible.
    • When using the image alt tag make sure to include descriptions of the images or figures you are using in your book. (<img src=”image.jpeg” alt=”image description”>)
    • Use semantic tagging in your file.
    • Don’t be afraid to ask about ePub3 accessibility features if you have someone creating your file for you.
  • Wendy discusses the tools and forums open to people interested in accessible publishing. (Links below.)
  • Wendy talks about audiobooks and how there is no specifications that exist for audiobooks currently.
  • And more!

W3C: https://www.w3.org/

EPUB Validator: http://validator.idpf.org/

ACE: https://daisy.github.io/ace/

BISG Quick Guide to Accessible Publishing: https://bisg.org/store/ViewProduct.aspx?id=6972996

Check out #eprdctn on Twitter!

Wendy Reid is a Senior QA at Rakuten Kobo Inc and has spent the last few years on the other side of EPUB mysteries and reading system technology. She is currently one of the co-chairs of the Publishing Working Group of the W3C and leads the audiobooks taskforce. In her abundant spare time, she likes to learn about new technologies and read as many eBooks as she can.

Live in Toronto and interested in hearing more from Wendy? You can hear Wendy at Tech Forum presenting “Speccing the Void: Adventures in the Audiobooks Abyss”.  More info here: https://techforum.booknetcanada.ca/schedule/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/wendy_a_reid

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