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WordPress Asked to Make Adding and Moving Widgets Accessible to the Blind Once Again

September 1, 2009 • Darrell Shandrow Hilliker

An accessibility advocate has asked WordPress to restore the ability for blind users to add and move widgets. Fellow blind and sighted WordPress users are urged to add their support to this effort.

Once upon a time, blind WordPress users enjoyed the ability to add and move widgets at will using the keyboard, but this accessibility vanished somewhere along the WordPress development cycle.

“I’m disappointed that WordPress has removed accessibility for widgets. Dragging widgets is the only way to add or rearrange them,” said Monica Willyard, a freelance writer and publisher of The Scanners Guild blog, in a post on Twitter. “They fixed it in version 2.5, and they seem to have broken it again.”

Willyard, like many other blind Internet users, is frustrated when keyboard navigation alternatives and other reasonable accessibility accommodations are not provided.

“At the moment, I’m having very angry and unprintable thoughts about the enventor of the mouse and the drag and drop process,” she said. “I have had four completely unrelated projects today where I can’t do what I need to do because the programmers relied on drag and drop.”

One opinion on “WordPress Asked to Make Adding and Moving Widgets Accessible to the Blind Once Again

  1. I agree. I have just been frustrated trying to put up a new website due to being unable to get the widgets where I want them. Using JAWS might let me drag and drop if I could tell where to drag from and where to drop but I cannot. WordPress used to work fine for me; but no more. Going back to an earlier version does not seem wise so I guess I will need to pass on using WordPress, unless "they" decide whether or not I can use WordPress matters to "them." It appears it does not. — This is very disappointing.

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