This is a DRAFT resource that supports Working Drafts of WCAG 3. Content in this resource is not mature and should not be considered authoritative. It may be changed, replaced or removed at any time.


🔙 WCAG 3.0 (Silver) Guidelines (Text alternatives)

Method: Decorative Images


  • All web platforms


  • HTML, CSS, ARIA, ePub, PDF


Decorative images don’t add information to the content of a page. Text values for these types of images would add audible clutter to screen reader output or could distract users if the topic is different from that in adjacent text. Merely omitting the alternative text can cause problems as some screen readers will try to repair the omission by reading the image filename. Whether to treat an image as decorative or informative is a judgment that only the author can make, based on the reason for including the image on the page.

How it solves user need

Explicitly marking an image as decorative will cause assistive technology to skip over the image as if it didn't exist on the page. This reduces time and fatigue needed to listen to descriptions of decorative images or long cryptic file names.


first draft

Change Log

  • first draft (2020-09-19)
Back to Top