Accessibility

Compliance analysis and opinion by David Berman

Overview

Blindside Networks is striving to create an accessible online experience for all users of BigBlueButton.

Blindside recognizes both the regulatory and usability benefits of complying with government standards for accessibility, and so strives to both comply with those standards and use them as a guideline for making BigBlueButton more accessible for persons with disabilities and difficulties. In support of this, Blindside arranged a compliance analysis of how BigBlueButton fairs when judged against standards established by the government of the United States (Revised Section 508, ADA) and the WCAG 2.0 standards, and the IASR regulations established by the Government of Ontario’s AODA legislation.

Blindside Networks requested that David Berman Communications of Ottawa, Ontario apply standard tests used for accessible electronic documents to BigBlueButton. This report summarizes the findings and provides an expert opinion.

Methodology

In order to assess the overall accessibility of BigBlueButton we carefully selected a statistically-relevant and horizontally representative sample test path for automated and manual study, as well as assessing the overall structure and common assets of the product. We studied the pages in their publicly-available state, at time points in July/August 2013, March/April 2016, February/March 2017, June/July 2018, and May/June 2019.

WCAG 2.0 accessibility expert opinion

It is my professional opinion that the provided test path for BigBlueButton meets or exceeds all applicable Level AA guidelines of the W3C WCAG 2.0 Guidelines, with these exceptions:

  1. For presenters, whether the site is WCAG 2.0 Level AA compliant or not depends upon the type of presentation they are making (as well as inaccessible content they may choose to present in the presentation pane).
  2. The Shared Notes view is not accessible.
  3. The Closed Captioning featured has limited accessibility.
  4. The tutorial material is not accessible.

Section 508 accessibility expert opinion

For a VPAT expressing BigBlueButton’s compliance with classic Section 508 (as opposed to the Revised Section 508 which points to WCAG 2.0 AA), visit https://bigbluebutton.org/files/vpat.pdf.

Usability testing

In addition, we have administered qualitative testing of the product by test users with substantial disabilities (blind, low vision, developmental, and mobility). All substantial issues discovered were brought to the attention of the developers.

David Berman, cpwa, rgd, fgdc

David Berman Communications

+1-613-769-5693 

berman@davidberman.com

This document most recently updated July 2019.

Interested in trying BigBlueButton

Check out the tutorial videos and then try out BigBlueButton on our demo server.