Character Styles Break Tag/Container Structure on Export (Accessibility)

Community Beginner ,
Aug 11, 2022 Aug 11, 2022

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I'm trying to export a PDF from Indesign accessibly. 
Apparently, any character style change in the middle of a paragraph (for example, this bold text here), breaks the tag container structure when viewed in Acrobat (see below).

 

Screen Shot 2022-08-11 at 2.23.20 PM.png

 

The top line should read as a single line in a screen reader, but instead is being broken into three lines by the change in character style. My readers tell me this is not accessible, but there appears to be no way to fix it. I've bolded this text in InDesign in every way I can, I've triple-checked that it's export-tagged correctly, etc. etc., but Indesign refuses to make this read as a single line.
If there's no way to export correctly, is there a way to merge tag containers in Acrobat Pro to clean up Indesign's mess?

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Bug , How to , Import and export

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Community Expert , Aug 11, 2022 Aug 11, 2022

This list of errors from Acrobat's Preflight are different from what you originally posted, about individual tags being broken into multiple content container boxes.

 

Going down the error list in your last screen capture from Acrobat's Preflight, the errors are, starting with"Content neither..."

  • Every piece of content in a PDF must either be taggged or be designated by you as an artifact. Your PDF has content that is in "limbo," neither tagged nor artifacted. Correct this error in InDesign.
  • Yo
...

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Community Expert ,
Aug 11, 2022 Aug 11, 2022

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Actually your screen capture shows the file correctly tagged per the PDF/UA-1 standard. And the tag tree might have a <Span> tag around the bolded text, as well.

 

InDesign always breaks up tags into one or more yellow container boxes (they're not tags) based on the actual line breaks and formatting within the paragraph. But those multiple containers should not affect how the file is voiced  -- if you're using a PDF/UA-compliant screen reader, that is, and one that is relatively up to date.

 

What screen reader or text-to-speech assistive technology are you using? And on which platform?

 

Bevi Chagnon | PubCom | Designer & Technologist for Accessible Documents
| Books & Classes | Accessible InDesign | Accessible PDFs | Accessible MS Office |

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Community Expert ,
Aug 11, 2022 Aug 11, 2022

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It is not broken up, it is all in the one <p> tag. InDesign has some strange things sometimes (with way to many <Span>) but this should be fine. If it is not accessible there is probably a complete other reason. Did you run the pdf/ua preflight check and error fixing in Acrobat? (Under Preflight panel, pdf standards, pdf/ua).

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Community Beginner ,
Aug 11, 2022 Aug 11, 2022

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Well the Preflight check is telling me everything is wrong...

 

Screen Shot 2022-08-11 at 3.28.16 PM.png

Meanwhile, the accessibility check is telling me everything is fine.

The whole document is readable and has a logical structure otheriwse, the screen readers just keep stopping whenever they hit a bold word.

We're testing with JAWS and NVDA

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Community Expert ,
Aug 11, 2022 Aug 11, 2022

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This list of errors from Acrobat's Preflight are different from what you originally posted, about individual tags being broken into multiple content container boxes.

 

Going down the error list in your last screen capture from Acrobat's Preflight, the errors are, starting with"Content neither..."

  • Every piece of content in a PDF must either be taggged or be designated by you as an artifact. Your PDF has content that is in "limbo," neither tagged nor artifacted. Correct this error in InDesign.
  • You have an incorrectly made hyperlink. Did you use InDesign's Hyperlinks panel and tools to generate your hyperlinks? (Both external to URLs and internal as cross-references.) Do you have hyperlinks on Parent Pages (master pages), such as in headers or footers that are automatically artifacted?
  • The PDF/UA identifier can only be built into a PDF that passes this Preflight test, so the errors must be corrected, and then you can apply the identifier to the file in Acrobat.
  • Display DocTitle is your control in Acrobat File/Properties/Initial View. And this requires that your file's XMP metadata for the Title field is complete, too.
  • The next 2 about forms fields and their annotations mean that the file has form fields but they weren't correctly made and tagged.
  • The last one about CIDset means that either 1) you didn't embed the fonts into the PDF when you exported it, or 2) your font doesn't contain one or more specific characters. Are all of your fonts OpenType (Unicode)? Unicode is required for accessibility.

 

Without seeing your PDF, It looks like you attempted to make an InDesign layout with form fields or other interactive elements in it, but didn't create them correctly. Also many basic InDesign requirements are missing, too, like fonts.

 

I suspect that good courses in basic InDesign and accessibility in InDesign would help you clear up these issues. InDesign is a pro-quality software program and requires training to correctly make files. If you want interactivity or accessibility, that requires specific additional training to have those features.

 

Bevi Chagnon | PubCom | Designer & Technologist for Accessible Documents
| Books & Classes | Accessible InDesign | Accessible PDFs | Accessible MS Office |

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Community Beginner ,
Aug 15, 2022 Aug 15, 2022

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Every piece of PDF content was tagged or artifacted by me before export.

I always use the InDesign hyperlinks panel to generate hyperlinks.

The file passed the preflight check before export.

The document has a title.

There are no form fields in the document. 

I embed fonts on export for this reason. 

 

The document has been exported for accessibility correctly. For whatever reason, screen readers simply stop reading at every bolded word. Sounds like there's no solution on my end.

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Community Expert ,
Sep 12, 2022 Sep 12, 2022

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quote

The file passed the preflight check before export.

By @Matthew25488204sxya

 

In InDesign, there is NO preflight check for accessibility.

The existing preflight profiles are strictly for traditional documents, not accessible PDFs.

 

Acrobat PRO has a preflight check for accessibility, but that's after the PDF is made, not before.

 

Bevi Chagnon | PubCom | Designer & Technologist for Accessible Documents
| Books & Classes | Accessible InDesign | Accessible PDFs | Accessible MS Office |

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New Here ,
Sep 09, 2022 Sep 09, 2022

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I'm having the same frustrating issue and my pre-flight panel shows ZERO errors

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Community Expert ,
Sep 12, 2022 Sep 12, 2022

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Returning to the original poster's question:

 

quote

Apparently, any character style change in the middle of a paragraph (for example, this bold text here), breaks the tag container structure when viewed in Acrobat (see below).

 

Screen Shot 2022-08-11 at 2.23.20 PM.png

 

The top line should read as a single line in a screen reader, but instead is being broken into three lines by the change in character style. My readers tell me this is not accessible, but there appears to be no way to fix it.

By @Matthew25488204sxya

 

What software are your readers using? Need software name, version, and platform.

 

If they are using JAWS or NVDA — the 2 leading screen readers in the industry — the multiple content containers (yellow boxes in the tag tree) do not affect how the content is voiced. And the multiple containers SHOULDN'T affect accessibility. 

 

We find the problem of either pauses/stops when non-compliant screen readers are used, such as Apple Preview (Mac) and Acrobat's built-in Read Aloud utility. Neither is a bonfide compliant screen reader (they're called text-to-speech utilities rather than screen readers).

 

Bevi Chagnon | PubCom | Designer & Technologist for Accessible Documents
| Books & Classes | Accessible InDesign | Accessible PDFs | Accessible MS Office |

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