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Enabling or disabling technologies? A critical approach to web accessibility

Adam, AE and Kreps, DG 2006, 'Enabling or disabling technologies? A critical approach to web accessibility' , Information Technology & People, 19 (3) , pp. 203-218.

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Abstract

Purpose – The purpose of this article is to analyse the continuing problem of web accessibility for disabled people as a critical information systems issue. Design/methodology/approach – The ways in which the web is used by disabled people, and problems that can arise, are described and related to the development of critical disability theory from older models of disability, including the medical and social models, noting that the social construction of disability model may tend to mask the embodied, lived experience of disability. Findings – The lack of interaction of the critical disability approach and dominant discourses of web accessibility and internet studies, particularly in relation to embodiment, is a major contributor to the continuance of an inaccessible Worldwide web. Research limitations/implications – The paper does not offer a comprehensive set of web accessibility issues, concentrating instead on the most common problems as exemplars. Practical implications – The paper raises awareness of web accessibility. Originality/value – The paper brings the topic of accessibility of technology by disabled people into the critical information systems arena and also incorporates social construction of disability and theoretical considerations of embodiedness in its analysis.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Journal special issue: Critical research in IS
Themes: Subjects / Themes > Z Bibliography. Library Science. Information Resources > Z665 Library Science. Information Science
Subjects / Themes > Q Science > QA Mathematics > QA075 Electronic computers. Computer science
Subjects / Themes > H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
Subjects outside of the University Themes
Schools: Colleges and Schools > College of Business & Law > Salford Business School > Centre for Digital Business
Journal or Publication Title: Information Technology & People
Publisher: Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Refereed: Yes
ISSN: 09593845
Related URLs:
Depositing User: DGP Kreps
Date Deposited: 20 Feb 2009 14:10
Last Modified: 20 Aug 2013 16:55
URI: http://usir.salford.ac.uk/id/eprint/1664

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