Media is an integral part of our daily lives. It entertains, informs, educates and often dictates the trends that define popular culture of the day. Simply put, media is an essential part of our society.
But imagine yourself in a situation where you were unable to watch that critically-acclaimed television show, view an image from your social media feed, enjoy the latest summer blockbuster film, or even participate in conversations regarding any one of these things. You would be missing out on a large part of what society has to offer.
Unfortunately, this is the situation for many people with a disability. Often, media is created considering only a limited perspective. Content producers assume audiences interact with their content in the same manner. The outcome of this narrow view of the world is inevitable exclusion from that content for those who do not do things in a way you expect.
Failure to appreciate the totality of your audience and the way they consume content can introduce artificial barriers. It doesn’t have to be this way. Simply understanding the needs of the broader audience can help break down these barriers, including identifying tools and strategies that promote inclusive media practices.