Target sued over Web access for the blind

A U.S. court ruled that Web sites are required by law to be accessible to the blind, and certified a class action suit against Target.

A U.S. court ruling on Web site accessibility for the blind could force companies to step up their adoption of technology for those with special needs.

The U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California ruled that Web sites such as, the U.S. retail giant, are required by California law to be accessible, extending a disabilities provision to the Internet.

The court further certified a lawsuit against Target by the National Federation of the Blind as a class action on behalf of blind Internet users throughout the U.S.

"This is a tremendous step forward for blind people throughout the country who for too long have been denied equal access to the Internet economy," the National Federation of the Blind (NFB) said in a statement. "All e-commerce businesses should take note of this decision and immediately take steps to open their doors to the blind."

The NFB's suit alleges that Target failed to make its Web site accessible to the blind, and then refused to do so when confronted with the issue, violating the Americans With Disabilities Act and two California civil rights statutes: the California UNRUH Civil Rights Act and the California Disabled Persons Act.

Many people with little or no vision can access the Internet using screen readers, which read words out loud from right to left on a page, according to WebAIM, a project by Utah State University and the Center for Persons with Disabilities.

Such users mainly depend on a keyboard rather than a mouse, because of the visual nature of point and click usage, WebAIM says. It suggests nearly a dozen ways to make Web sites easier for the blind to use, including designs that use keyboard-alternatives where a mouse might normally be required, and providing text descriptions under graphics, photographs and other images.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Dan Nystedt

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles


PCW Evaluation Team

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?