Participating in WAI
The W3C Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI) provides an international forum for collaboration between industry, disability organizations, accessibility researchers, government, and others interested in web accessibility.
We encourage individuals and organizations around the world to participate in activities that help improve accessibility of the web. Some of the many ways that you can participate in WAI described below range from volunteering to implement, promote, and review guidelines; to occasional participation in an interest group; to dedicated participation in a working group.
If you have any questions about getting involved with WAI or would like more information, please contact Shawn at +1-617-395-7664 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
New WAI publications, draft documents for review, and other WAI announcements are listed on the News page.
You can subscribe to get news announcements via e-mail, Atom/RSS feed, or Twitter from Get WAI News.
Participating in Guidelines and Groups
See How WAI Develops Accessibility Guidelines through the W3C Process: Milestones and Opportunities to Contribute to learn how WAI works through a process designed to:
- ensure broad community input, and
- encourage consensus development.
Reviewing Guidelines and Documents
WAI welcomes comments on documents at any time. Comments are handled differently depending on the stage of document development. See the “Feedback on Specific Documents” section of Contacting WAI for where to send comments.
One of the best times to comment on developing documents is during a formal period for public review. Calls for review of WAI documents are announced on the WAI Interest Group mailing list, W3C_WAI on Twitter, WAI Highlights RSS feed, and the WAI home page.
Submitting Techniques for Implementing Guidelines
WAI’s Web accessibility guidelines have associated Techniques documents that tell you how to meet the guidelines, such as Techniques for WCAG 2.0. You can submit ideas for new or updated techniques. There is a form for submitting WCAG 2.0 Techniques. To submit techniques for other guidelines, contact the Working Group’s Team Contact.
Participating in Interest Groups
The WAI Interest Group (WAI IG) is for general discussion and feedback on all areas of WAI’s work. Most of the interaction within WAI IG is through the public mailing list.
Participating in Working Groups
Anyone can join a WAI Working Group public mailing list, or read the public list archives.
There are specific criteria for formally joining Working Groups, including requirements for participation and contribution. See the Working Group pages below to find what group best fits your interests, and to get information on participation and links to the mailing list archives.
- ARIA Working Group develops a suite of Accessible Rich Internet Applications resources, and accessible APIs and mappings.
- Accessible Platform Architectures (APA) Working Group reviews and comments on support for accessibility throughout W3C’s other working groups.
- Education and Outreach Working Group develops awareness, training, and implementation resources supporting Web accessibility.
- Web Content Accessibility Guidelines Working Group develops guidelines for Web pages, Web applications, and other Web content.
WAI’s work is supported in part by sponsorship from industry, disability, and government organizations interested in contributing to WAI’s efforts to make the Web more accessible. Please see the list of current sponsors on the WAI home page, and Sponsoring WAI for more information on WAI sponsorship.
Promoting and Implementing Web Accessibility
- Tell people about WAI and web accessibility.
- Link to WAI’s home page and other relevant resources, including Finding Your WAI (shortened link: bit.ly/yourWAI).
- Cover web accessibility in presentations and training to web developers, designers, managers, and others.
- Put a WCAG logo on your website if it meets WCAG 2.0.
- Use the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) documents to help make your website accessible.
- If you develop authoring tools—any software or service that people use to create or modify Web content, including content management systems—implement the Authoring Tool Accessibility Guidelines (ATAG).
- If you develop Web browsers, media players, assistive technologies, or other user agents—implement the User Agent Accessibility Guidelines (UAAG).
- Encourage authoring tools to meet ATAG by directly contacting vendors and requesting increased accessibility support in future versions, and by purchasing tools that provide the best support for accessibility.
- Encourage Web browsers, media players, assistive technologies, and other user agents to meet UAAG.
- Encourage organizations to adopt an accessibility policy for their organization that defines their commitment to Web accessibility.
- Encourage websites to be accessible, for example, provide feedback on inaccessible websites and inaccessible Web products carefully; it is usually more productive to start with a positive encouraging tone, rather than a negative critical tone.