[Athen] online text to speech

Pratik Patel pratikp1 at gmail.com
Mon Aug 6 14:15:34 PDT 2012

Hello Marshall,

Disclaimer, I am the owner of a consulting firm which works with many
colleges and universities about their web strategies, accessibility design,
and usability.

Generally, we do not recommend that you employ services like this for making
web sites accessible. It is unlikely to meet the needs of most of your users
who rely on assistive technology. Users who do rely on assistive technology
will often bring their own assistive technology to experience your web site.
Purchasing this option does not solve a fundamental problem for your site.
That is-your web site needs to be accessible first in order to make this
service work well. If it is not, then either this service or the the
assistive technology that your visitors will be using will not be able to
access your site effectively. Services like these are often marketed as
magical solutions that will solve all your problems. But conducting
development in the right way will often solve more problems than using
services such as this one.

If your web developers would like training, testing services, or other
assistance on making your web site more friendly to visitors with
disabilities, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Warm regards,


Pratik Patel

From: athen-list-bounces at mailman1.u.washington.edu
[mailto:athen-list-bounces at mailman1.u.washington.edu] On Behalf Of Marshall
Sent: Monday, August 06, 2012 4:57 PM
To: athen-list-u.washington.edu; webaim-forum-list.webaim.org
Cc: itd-jnl-listserv.icors.org; DSSHE-L-LISTSERV.BUFFALO.EDU
Subject: [Athen] online text to speech

Is anyone familiar with the online speech to text service Readspeaker? I
happened to run across the DSS website at Ohio State and they are using this
to read the content of their web site. I want to make our school's website
accessible with the speaking option, but this is the only service I have
seen in use so far (and it sounds expensive). I also am curious if there is
anything else out there that can do this for a low cost or even free.

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