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InDesign alt text

New Here ,
Mar 19, 2021 Mar 19, 2021

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Hi. I am creating an accessible PDF using InDesign. I have added Alt text to the images (under the object export options tab) in the InDesign file, however the alt text does not show up when you hover over the image in Acobat.

If I take that image and put it in a new InDesign file (of the same page length) the alt text works in acrobat.

There is an object style applied to the images and I have checked — they have exactly the same settings.

What can be in the original supplied InDesign file that could be preveting the alt text from working? Going crazy!

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Mar 19, 2021 Mar 19, 2021

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Have you checked to see if your making a Accessible PDF?

https://helpx.adobe.com/ie/indesign/using/creating-accessible-pdfs.html

 

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New Here ,
Mar 23, 2021 Mar 23, 2021

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Yes I have. I have used styles, tags etc... the only issue I am having is my tables and figures need to be anchored to be able to use the Set Alt-text utility in Acrobat. However, some figures and tables need to appear on a different spread to where they are mentioned and I can't seem to find out how to get around this. Do you have any suggestions? Thanks.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Mar 23, 2021 Mar 23, 2021

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quote

the only issue I am having is my tables and figures need to be anchored to be able to use the Set Alt-text utility in Acrobat.

By Josephine@Redtail

 

No, that's not correct. Anchoring has nothing to do with being able to set Alt-text in either InDesign or Acrobat.

If you don't anchor your tables and figures, then they will be tagged and placed at the end of the tag tree and not in any specific spot.

 

But something else may be hanging up this project: Did you use the Articles panel? If so, everything must in the Articles panel in order for it to be tagged, so:

  • If figures and tables are anchored in a text thread, then they'll be tagged in the PDF as long as the text thread is in the Articles panel.
  • But if figures and tables are NOT anchored, then they must be manually dragged into the Articles panel in order to be tagged in the PDF.

 

quote

However, some figures and tables need to appear on a different spread to where they are mentioned and I can't seem to find out how to get around this. Do you have any suggestions?

By Josephine@Redtail

 

At this time, InDesign does not let us anchor any type of frame or element on a different spread. You have 2 options:

  • Change the layout to prevent this, or
  • Manually drag the <Figure> or <Table> tag into the correct place after the PDF is made.

 

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

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New Here ,
Mar 24, 2021 Mar 24, 2021

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Thank you so much Bevi. That is what I was doing wrong. I had only pulled in the text to the articles panel, not the figures and tables. You are a lifesaver. 🙂

 

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Mar 19, 2021 Mar 19, 2021

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Hovering over the graphic in Acrobat is not a valid method of checking if Alt-text is present on it. Sometimes you'll see it, othertimes you won't.

Instead, use one of these methods to check the Alt-text:

  1. Locate the <Figure> tag in the Tags panel, right-click, select Properties, and view the Alt-text in the field box.
  2. Use the Set Alt-text utility in the Accessibility tool panel (right side of Acrobat or under the Tools tab in the upper left). It will cycle through all the graphics and display the Alt-text for each if it's there. You can also add the Alt-text with this utility, as well.
  3. Run the Accessibility Checker from the Accessibility tool panel. It will flag all graphics that are missing Alt-Text.
  4. In the Order Panel, the <Figure> elements on each page will show the initial fragment of the Alt-text.

 

More:

  • Check to ensure you're using a current version of InDesign, 2020 or later. There was a bug in earlier versions in which the export utility would sometimes lose the Alt-text when the PDF was exported.
  • And update your Acrobat, too.

 

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

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New Here ,
Mar 23, 2021 Mar 23, 2021

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Thanks for the reply. I now realised that my figures and tables need to be anchored to be able to see the alt text using the Set Alt-text utility. Unfortunalty, some of my figures are needing to be on a different spread than where the text appears — how do I anchor these?

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Mar 23, 2021 Mar 23, 2021

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See above dated March 19, 2021.

 

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

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