Accessibility - Is the Adobe Checker enough?

Explorer ,
Feb 11, 2021 Feb 11, 2021

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Hello all,

I work part time for a local government authority, and we are working on making all our digital content accessible.

 

I recently attended a (very thorough) course on accessibilty using indesign which was great but the trainer suggested that using the Acrobat accessibility checker wasn't sufficient - ie a PDF could pass all of the checks but still wouldnt necessacarily be accessible enough to meet the WCAG standards.

 

I wondered if anyone had any experience of this, could recommend any further checkers to ensure we meet the AA level of requirement by WCAG!

Thank you

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Standards and accessibility

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Feb 11, 2021 Feb 11, 2021

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No!

It's exceptionally limited in what it checks. Here are some of the items it leaves out:

  • Color contrast
  • Incorrect tags (like a list with all <P> tags)
  • Illogical tag reading order
  • Inappropriate or incomplete Alt-text
  • Can't asses complex tables

 

In our PDF Remediation classes, we recommend it as a first-level check of a PDF's accessibility. But you should use these checkers, too:

 

Nothing takes the place of a human that is well-trained in accessibility!

(But that gives you job security, right?) <grin>

 

Suggestion: Maybe post your question to the PDF Accessibility group on Facebook. It's just for PDF accessibility professionals. Lots of great ideas, comraderie, and advice. https://www.facebook.com/groups/PDFAccessibility You'll get a good cross section of people's thoughts about checkers.

 

Bevi Chagnon | Designer & Technologist for Accessible InDesign + PDFs |
Books & Classes | PubCom

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Explorer ,
May 11, 2021 May 11, 2021

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Bevi, you advise (in another post on this forum) that WCAG is not the correct standard for assessing accessibility of PDF. I understood from your other post that the correct standard was PDF/UA (ISO 14289). I have not had this confirmed by anyone else.

 

However, to my knowledge, there are (currently) no web browsers that generate a proper accessibility tree from tagged PDF content, so it is very confusing when Web Content Accessibility Guidelines are still mentioned in the context of PDF. Certain parts of WCAG will be almost impossible to meet with PDF

 

You did not mention ISO 14289 in your reply here. Please provide some clarity on this point, if you can.

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