Support » Requests and Feedback » Problems for Visually Impaired Admins

  • Several years ago I was thrilled to come across my first WordPress blog, because I’m visually impaired and have to rely on a screen reader, (Window-Eyes) and it was totally and completely accessible! So when I decided to put up my own websites, I was determined to use WordPress, even though the person helping me design and set up the sites was vigorously opposed to doing so and wanted to use something he was more familiar with. But since none of his options were accessible and made it impossible for me to perform all admin functions, I won the debate and we set up several sites using WP. However, we did a lot of customization and were using WordPress 2.0. Due to the success of the site and ministry, and our expanded needs, it became necessary to upgrade the site, which we did successfully over the weekend (using a new domain name for the upgraded site). But I was quite discouraged and disappointed, because I have now lost the ability to perform many of the most basic and necessary admin functions, because 2.5.1 is not screen reader friendly. For instance, when editing a page, it does not display the page order, the author’s name and other key information. I have been told by a sighted user that there are now links (which don’t even show up as links for me) and that one has to click on them to display the data, which was not necessary with WP 2.0, and which I don’t understand why anyone would prefer. As a result of this, we can’t move over to the new, upgraded website, because I am no longer able to perform virtually all admin functions as I’ve been able to for the past two and a half years. So I’m eager to hear that these issues will be addressed as soon as possible by using accessibility standards, including labelling graphics and making widgets accessible for blind users. The site now using WordPress 2.0 is, and the upgraded new site is And other than uploading WordPress designing the header and logo, and making the customizations I needed, I was able to do everything else to design and set up the site without assistance. So needless to say, I am a HUGE WordPress fan and recommend it to everyone! And i’m sure someone will do what is needed to once again make it accessible for blind users and site administrators. Thanks!

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  • I really feel for you. I build fully accessible websites as it’s something I feel very strongly about, and I am getting more and more alarmed at the inaccessible JavaScript based junk that’s creeping into web apps without any kind of fall back for accessible alternatives.

    It’s especially alarming to see companies such as Happy Cog and Automattic being involved in this slippery slide — they both advocate web standards (indeed Zeldman, Happy Cog founder, also founded the Web Standards Project) and good accessibility is accepted to be part of web standards.

    I don’t know what the hell is going on anymore in the web development world. Some people call it progress, I call it madness.

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