Colors and Accessibility. And Standards.
- April 19, 2018
I was reading How Going From Entrepreneur to Investor Changed My Perspective, by Unreasonable, and I saw the options to enhance readability. As I selected different readability options, I see the difference. Is it about accessibility (standards)? I wondered.
For example, the BRIGHT option changes it to multiple colors.
Likewise, the BLUES option changes it to multiple colors in blue color family.
Unreasonable has used BeeLine Reader for this service and BeeLine’s website does not really talk about accessibility.
I have never studied design formally, as my work revolves around UX and content strategy and storytelling. I am not too sure if BeeLine contributes to accessibility or readability guidelines by Web Standards or otherwise. My quick research shows me:
- W3C: Contrast: Understanding Success Criterion 1.4.3
- Pennsylvania State University Accessibility: Color and Contrast on Web Pages
Unable to relate this Enhance Readability option with accessibility or any readability guidelines, I thought of my facebook friend Molly E. Holzschlag.
(Know about Molly at her Wiki page.)
I shared the Unreasonable article URL with Molly and wrote to her – “Does it fall under Accessibility (some standards, or by the brand’s internal guidelines on accessibility). And do you have any reference to a study, article, or research that talks about using different text colors to enhance readability? For instance, I found something at… (and I shared two URLs of my research)”
Molly replied as
“Hi there yes I do remember you and thank you for reaching out. Anything on contrast from w3c wcag is going to be helpful on this issue. you also might want to take a look at color blindness there are some excellent tools out there to help developers visualize color choices the way various color blindness types effect the end result it’s very interesting really. You’re on the right track!”
Colors For Accessibility
Connectability says that BeeLine Reader makes reading more accessible for readers with vision impairments, dyslexia, and ADHD.
SC 1.4.3 says – “People with low vision often have difficulty reading text that does not contrast with its background. This can be exacerbated if the person has a color vision deficiency that lowers the contrast even further. Providing a minimum luminance contrast ratio between the text and its background can make the text more readable even if the person does not see the full range of colors. It also works for the rare individuals who see no color.” Source
Have you noticed any public content with options to switch between colors? If so, please share it in the comments below, with your thoughts for accessibility perspective or otherwise.