Sin #2 of Inaccessible Blogs: Using Consecutive One-Worded Links

Glenda Watson Hyatt as a devil

Hyperlinks are the connective tissue of the blogosphere. Oftentimes we scan blog posts and webpages for interesting and relevant links. However, sometimes the link’s purpose is unclear, particularly consecutive one-worded links, as in the following example:

Excerpt text with four consecutive, one-worded hyperlinks

Why are Consecutive One-Worded Links an Accessibility Sin?

Individuals with sight impairments who use text-to-speech screen readers can have the software scan for hypertext links. The destinations of the above one-worded hyperlinks are difficult to determine.

Individuals with mobility impairments navigate using only the keyboard use the Tab key to move from link to link. Following an ambiguous link only to find the information of no interest and then needing to backtrack to continue reading the original post is frustration at its finest; it’s a waste of precious time and energy.

Individuals with shaky hands find clicking on small target areas difficult and might inadvertently click on a link they did not intend. Again, frustrating.

Individuals with cognitive impairments might find such links confusing, and are left unsure whether to follow or not.

How to Absolve this Sin?

When providing several links in a row, consider the words you use for the links, and how these links can be defined in a clearer way. Do the links provide a clue as to where your readers, with or without impairments, will end up if they click?

For more tips and tricks on how to easily make you blog more accessible, check out the Blog Accessibility Mastermind.

4 Responses to Sin #2 of Inaccessible Blogs: Using Consecutive One-Worded Links
  1. Barbara
    October 31, 2010 | 7:04 pm

    Okay, I gained a little more understanding here. I did not know about the tab-thing. I mouse-over links to see the url and decide if I want to click on particular links. (However, my data tells me that few of my readers follow links in my posts.)

    The small target area is something I can understand also, but I do not like to see my links wrap-around at the right margin. Another accommodation for small target area is to use larger fonts – which I do.

    I will disagree with you (mildly) on trying to accommodate persons with intellectual disabilities via elimination of one word links. The variability among persons is too wide to assume that would be helpful. Just saying that is not a strong reason.

  2. [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Glenda Watson Hyatt , kulpreet singh and Kay Ballard, HeidiCohen. HeidiCohen said: RT @GlendaWH: Sin #2 of Inaccessible Blogs: Using Consecutive One-Worded Links #blogchat [...]

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  4. [...] I wrote about hyperlinks here. [...]

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