Target sued for inaccessible web site

The National Federation of the Blind has filed a suit against Target stores. The Target web site fails not only basic accessibility issues, i.e. alt attributes, but also uses outdated JavaScript navigation and form actions that make it impossible for people using assistive devices to download internet-exclusive coupons and access the online pharmacy.

The NFB actually gave Target 10 months to make adjustments to their site before filing the law suit. Unfortunately, big business seems to need these shots in the arm to move in the right direction.

History of lawsuit-activated advancements

The Australian Olympic site was sued for making ticket purchases impossible online to the blind. New York sued several travel sites for their inaccessible sites. Now Target is the new “target” and perhaps this will be the straw that breaks the hobbled camel’s back.

Just Do It

It all goes back to being more than a “web designer” and thinking about how your site is going to be used by the public. Are you doing something because it “looks cool”, “is quicker”, or “is how it’s always been done”? Or are you doing something because it adds intrinsic value, better performance, expands the audience, assists the user, makes it more intuitive, …

When I add something to a web page, whether it is a link, list, table, or paragraph, I think about how it is going to be used.

Should I put a title on the link? Is the text descriptive enough? Is the list or paragraph the most appropriate structural element? Should the table have a summary? Should I use headers=”” or will scope=”col” be enough?