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Accessible media preview from CSUN

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The annual International Technology and Persons with Disabilities Conference (commonly known as CSUN) starts on 21 March in San Diego, California. This year there is significant coverage around accessible media. Media Access Australia’s CEO, Alex Varley, previews some personal highlights.

Seated audience attending a conference

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More work needed for digital inclusion at home

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A newly-released report from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) lists the number of households with access to the internet at home as 7.7 million in the last financial year, representing 86% of all households, up 3% from 2012–13. However, a recent discussion paper shows that there are one million people with a reported disability who do not have internet access at home.

Left hand pressing a holographic play button

The ABS Household use of IT study, released on 18 February 2016, shows that the number of Australians accessing the net is continuing to rise, albeit at a slightly slower rate than in past years.

Digital media and technology: 

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First NVDA screen reader update for 2016 now available

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NV Access has launched the 2016.1 update of its NVDA screen reader for Microsoft Windows, adding a new option to lower the volume of external sounds, additional support for braille displays, significant fixes for using Microsoft Office and improvements to browsing the iTunes Store.

Woman using a laptop with headphones outdoors


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Microsoft reveals accessibility goals for Windows 10 and Office 365

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Tech giant Microsoft has revealed its roadmap of accessibility features to be introduced in Windows 10 and Office 365 over the course of 2016. The announcement comes after a number of public statements outlining an increased commitment to inclusion of people with disabilities in its product offering and services.

Laptop running Windows 10


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Accessibility in the cloud – benefits, issues and trends

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As a new survey shows an increase in the use of the cloud in 2016, the impact of this on people with disabilities and impairments becomes ever more important. Media Access Australia has produced a white paper, Accessibility of Cloud Computing – current and future trends, which provides valuable insights into cloud accessibility.

Left hand holds a smartphone with floating squares emerging from the screen


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Video advertisements on Facebook to be auto-captioned

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Facebook will begin to roll out a new feature that will make auto-playing advertisements more accessible to people with a disability.

Man giving thumbs up whilst holding card with Facebook 'like' icon

Following the launch of auto-playing video advertisements, new captioning features are being introduced to increase user engagement. These new features by default make advertisements more accessible to users that have a disability.

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Service Providers Accessibility Guide now available via direct download

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Media Access Australia’s Service Providers Accessibility Guide, which received a significant update in October 2015, is now available to download directly in accessible PDF and Word formats via our Digital Accessibility Services website. The guide caters to service providers using practical, hands-on, step-by-step ways to effectively prepare and deliver content and communications for people with disabilities via computing and mobile devices.

Finger resting on an accessibility button on a computer keyboard

Digital media and technology: 

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Professional Certificate in Web Accessibility promotional video out now

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A new video produced by Media Access Australia has been created to promote the upcoming Professional Certificate in Web Accessibility (PCWA). It’s designed to underline the main points and key benefits of enrolling in Australia’s only university-accredited web accessibility certificate for digital professionals.

Five students accessing technology via a laptop and a tablet computer.

The PCWA course highlights video runs for one minute and thirty seconds. In addition to the standard video, an audio described version of this video is also available.


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Digital Gap pushes for change by 2017

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The call for improvement to digital accessibility for people with disabilities moved to Parliament House in Canberra with a call for significant change to happen by 2017, which is the 25th anniversary of the Disability Discrimination Act.

Two glass jars of peanut butter. Smooth on the left and crunchy on the right.


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Windows 10 Home and Pro – hands-on accessibility test

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Shortly after the launch of Windows 10 on July 29th, Dr Scott Hollier put together his thoughts, findings and hands-on impressions regarding the accessibility of Microsoft's latest operating system.

Windows 10 desktop with the Start menu expanded


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