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The self-fulfilling prophecy

1 minute read

I often hear people say they don't prioritse accessibility because they have no users who are disabled. This is a common misconception. Are the two correlated or does one cause the other - and which?

Correlation refers to a relationship between two concepts where they tend to change together.

You may not observe many users with disabilities on your website, but that doesn't mean they're not there. Often, inaccessible websites exclude potential users with disabilities, skewing the user demographics. This makes the correlation between user demographics and prioritising accessibility misleading.

Correlation alone doesn't imply causation. Just because two things occur together doesn't mean one causes the other. Causation means that, keeping the same two concepts in mind, one is a direct result of the other.

When websites aren't accessible, they inadvertently exclude individuals with disabilities from accessing and using them. This exclusion perpetuates the illusion that there's no demand from users with disabilities, creating the self-fulfilling prophecy.

So I ask you this. What's more probable? That you don't have users with disabilities and your accessibility efforts would be wasted?

Or is it that you don't have users with disabilities because you don't offer them an accessible website?

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