Background to the site
This website has grown out of work by The Publishers Association accessibility steering group. The steering group included representatives from JISC Techdis, RNIB and several publishers. The ultimate aim of the accessibility steering group is to improve access to all publications in a way that is both cost - effective and sustainable by integrating into the publishing workflow.
It is normally realistic for publishers to provide one of two digital formats - either an e - book in an online library/database system or a copy of the text book in PDF format. The latter is one of the most common solutions but the PDF format is complex and often unpredictable when used with assistive technologies. It is important to recognize that getting the alternative format is normally the beginning of the accessibility solution, not the end and time must be allowed for adapting a PDF to make it properly usable with some assistive technologies. Further advice is available in the section 'How to use this resource'.
The Publishers Association has started working to inform publishers as to the importance of documents having a semantic structure which can be used for navigation by a wide range of assistive technologies. Currently software incompatibilities can make this difficult to achieve and so this is an area where both technology and awareness need improving but as more requests for alternative formats are made, industry awareness of the issues can only improve.