July – Digital Accessibility

Digital Accessibility for People with Disabilities
As you may have heard, GTxcel is updating our Turnstyle Webreader platform to support the WCAG (Web Content Accessibility Guidelines) at the AA level. Our goal is to make the reading view of your content accessible to all readers, including those with disabilities who may be using assistive technologies.

A large part of this effort involves updates to the front-end code of the Webreader interface to adhere to the WCAG standards. We will also be updating our text extraction processes to ensure that the article content itself is fully compliant with the standards. Lastly, when you preview or edit article content, the article editor will indicate if your article content does not meet WCAG standards and provide guidance for addressing it.

Questions and Answers regarding WCAG:

What is WCAG?
WCAG guidelines explain how to make Web content accessible to people with disabilities. The guidelines are intended for all Web content developers (page authors and site designers). The primary goal of these guidelines is to promote accessibility. However, following them will also make Web content more available to all users regardless of how they are accessing the content (e.g., desktop browser, voice browser, mobile phone, automobile-based personal computer, etc.) or any constraints they may be operating under (e.g., noisy surroundings, under- or over-illuminated rooms, in a hands-free environment, etc.).

For a full description of the WCAG Guidelines and more, click the link below:

How soon will these changes be in place?
We are hoping to rollout the changes in August but will update you as we get closer to the release.

How will WCAG affect my production process?
GTxcel will handle all the updates to the Webreader as well as some additional changes in how we extract the text for the reading view. However, in the article editor, we will add a compliance report with each new issue that will highlight any issues found with your content. This report will only be accessible to you through the publishing dashboard.

Will I have to do anything different when providing the PDFs?
Ensuring your content is AA compliant will be up to you. If you want to conform, there are certain items your design team will want to consider when creating digital content:

Images that include fig captions and alt text can help provide context to an end user who has a site disability. If you do not provide fig captions or alt text with your pdfs, we will be adding alt text so that a screen reader will have a basic description of an image.

Text size and contrast
We recently added the ability to enlarge fonts on the article view. Contrast between text and background will also be an important consideration for designers who are committed to providing a more accessible reading experience.

To read more about contrast and font sizes see this link below:

Can I opt out of making any changes to my publication?
Our Webreader will be updated to comply with web accessibility standards and we will make recommendations for changes if we detect any issues with your content, but the choice to comply with those suggestions will be yours.

Why is it important to be WCAG Certified?
There is growing pressure on content creators to provide content that is accessible. Depending on your industry, there may be legal reasons to comply with WCAG. Across all industries it is considered a best practice to ensure your content is accessible to all.

What if I supply my own HTML?
There are certain rules for extraction that should be followed to ensure text is compatible with machine assistance technology. If you are supplying your own HTML, we will work with you to ensure you have up to date information on HTML formatting.
Stay tuned for next month’s WCAG updates!

Need Help?
The Digital Help Desk is the process for communicating with GTxcel regarding new title setups, questions, and technical issues for the Web Reader and/or Apps.

You can submit a request to us through the Request Help button located in the Publisher Dashboard or call the support number: 800-609-8994, option 3.
Contact Us GraphicContact Support
Monday to Friday
800-609-8994, option 3
Response Times
General Question/Requests – A Customer Success team Member will begin working on your request within one to two hours of receipt. We will complete the request as soon as possible; we aim to have all requests completed within 24 hours.