An alternative for time-based media is provided for all prerecorded synchronized media and for all prerecorded video-only media.

Testing & Remediation

How to test: View any of the video content on your site and check to see if there is a text version of the content. How to remediate: When posting video content to your site, include an alternative, text based version of the content. The alternative for time-based media provides a running description of all that is going on in the synchronized media content. It reads something like a book. Unlike audio description, the description of the video portion is not constrained to just the pauses in the existing dialogue. Full descriptions are provided of all visual information, including visual context, actions and expressions of actors, and any other visual material. In addition, non-speech sounds (laughter, off-screen voices, etc.) are described, and transcripts of all dialogue are included. The sequence of descriptions and dialogue transcripts is the same as the sequence in the synchronized media itself.

Questions and Answers

Are animated gifs okay to have?

Most of the time animated gifs will be accessible. There should be a few things to keep in mind though to ensure this remains true. For example, ask yourself if there is another way that the message can be communicated. Would a still image do? If not, think about providing an alternative or some way that users can forgo the animation. A useful tool when checking your gifs for accessibility may be this Photosensitive Epilepsy Analysis Tool. The thought behind this is that you can make sure the animation won't trigger seizures in people who are sensitive to them.

What is Time-based media?

Time-based media is content that must be made accessible when held against criterion 1.2 of the WCAG 2.0 guidelines found here: https://www.w3.org/TR/UNDERSTANDING-WCAG20/media-equiv.html Content is considered time-based media if it's:
  • Audio-only
  • Video-only
  • A combination audio/video
  • Audio and or video combined with an interaction.
This terminology encompasses a broad number of third-party software platforms and content libraries, such as:
  • YouTube
  • Video.js
  • SoundCloud
  • Spotify
Put broadly, time-based media is anything that's embedded on a website that: moves, makes noise, displays content synchronized with another element of the site, or displays content that changes without user input. Certain accessibility considerations need to be made when building content so that everyone has access to content regardless of their level of ability.

How long does the accessibliity process take?

This question depends on a number of factors including size of site, desired level of conformance, your developer's understanding of accessibility techniques, etc. Accessible Web is here to help. Reach out and we can discuss your site specifically.