[thelist] Top 10 reasons to make your page accessible...

Barney Carroll barney at textmatters.com
Tue Jan 23 05:00:03 CST 2007

Christian Heilmann wrote:
> I am bored to tears with these "people will find you and you make
> shitloads of money and you won't be sued" accessibility talks as they
> tend to breed companies that love to tick boxes on a bobby report
> rather than really do something about accessibility. There is no such
> thing as white hat SEO, period.

I sympathise, it's pretty tragic. But unless you're generally a fluid, 
charismatic and gifted speaker, getting to a board of sales-minded 
people with little enthusiasm for communication technologies in their 
own right... Is difficult to accomplish in any other way.

Having said this, I recently realised that generally I am far too 
cynical of clients in general, giving them no credit of imagination by 
default. and whenever possible they should not be patronised.

The danger is that we don't grasp the inherent values we're preaching 
that strongly, and by rooting our sales speach in shallow 
business-jargon and short-sighted greed we will eventually blind 
ourselves to an open and enthusiastic view. What you have to ask 
yourself is this: "Is what I honestly believe to be the best thing about 
my services, the way I understand them, of no interest to the person in 
front of me?".

In ideal circumstances, you should be able to offer your services as 
'The internet is full of possibilities and pitfalls. As someone who can 
perceive these, understand them and deal with them intelligently, I can 
manage your web presence and allow you to capitalise on these.'

But for someone without some of the shared understanding or imagination, 
a one-to-one human conversation like that may not be effective, and 
specifying the SALES SALES SALES aspect may be necessary.

It all comes down to psychology. A revolution would be nice, but for the 
guy on the ground trying to justify his job, you often have to use the 
language of the powers that be.


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