[Athen] Accessibility of Facebook and MySpace

Marks, Jim marks at mso.umt.edu
Fri May 9 14:50:16 PDT 2008

Hi Dawn,

I use Jaws on both Facebook and My Space, but I'm not sure I can give
you a definitive answer on the accessibility of either. It seems like I
can do most of what I want on either service. For example, I mostly
wanted to spy on my teenage children, which worked fairly well until I
was dumb enough to tip my hand and they were smart enough to shut me
out. But I Did bust at least one senior high beer party before it
happened thanks to the kids' clueless self-exposures. Why is it that
these kids have such great big bodies and tiny little minds, anyhow?
But then I digress.

These days, the structure of a webpage has a lot to do with whether I
can use it well or not. Many a technically accessible website has so
much information published without the benefit of headings, properly
formatted tables, etc. that the website is not really usable. My Space
is terrible in this regard, and Facebook is a bit better.

Oh, one more thing. My university is looking into using Facebook more
than we do now. It turns out that we often have better luck reaching
students on Facebook than we do within our own system. That's changing
as we rely more heavily on university e-mail and services. Even so, we
are exploring the same things you are.

Jim Marks
Director of Disability Services
University of Montana
jim.marks at umontana.edu

-----Original Message-----
From: athen-bounces at athenpro.org [mailto:athen-bounces at athenpro.org] On
Behalf Of Dawn Hunziker
Sent: Friday, May 09, 2008 3:05 PM
Subject: [Athen] Accessibility of Facebook and MySpace

Hi again,

There are several departments at the University of Arizona that are
considering using Facebook and/or MySpace to communicate with students.

Are any of you familiar with the accessibility of these sites? The
information I've been able to find says that Facebook has a team that
works on accessibility while MySpace isn't as accessible.... Is this

Also, do you know if other Universities are moving in this same

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