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Siri’s True Face Is Unmasked To Encourage Making The Web More Accessible For All
By Mikelle Leow, 01 Oct 2021
Video screenshot via UserWay
Apple’s smart assistant Siri was probably the voice you heard the most of during the lockdown, and now, you can meet the face guiding you behind the glass display. Susan Bennett, the original voice of Siri, is the face of a campaign by web accessibility tool UserWay urging businesses to make their online channels friendlier for people with disabilities.
Bennett was an obvious choice for UserWay’s plea, given her resonant impact on accessibility in tech. “Not only is she a voice that everyone knows, but Siri is also one of the most helpful tools when it comes to web accessibility. Voice activation is a huge aid for so many people navigating websites that we felt compelled to include her in our narrative,” said founder Allon Mason in a press release.
Plus, her presence is a reminder that, while Siri (and Bennett) would like to help as many people as possible, it can’t accomplish enough on its own.
Although there’s a growing reliance on the digital, 97% of the top million websites in the world aren’t fully usable for people with disabilities. UserWay says it has the fix, and it’s an almost instant one too. Its AI-driven widget scans businesses’ websites for accessibility issues and edits their source codes in real-time to be user-friendly.
“Just a single line of code can make sure a website is accessible to anyone,” noted Itai Bichler, the advertisement’s creative marketing consultant, in a statement published by The Drum.
Meanwhile, users can also manually toggle the legibility settings on their end with options like text size adjustments, color contrast settings, and the ability to use a screen reader.
While the widget is useful for those with disabilities, UserWay is focusing its outreach toward businesses and website owners because it’s up to them to help enforce web accessibility on a wider scale, and it takes just one small step.
“It was a powerful reminder that the internet is not accessible for millions of disabled individuals. I’m hoping for some more awareness because the issue right now is that most people aren’t even aware there is an issue at all,” said Bennett, the original voice of Siri.
[via The Drum, video and cover image via UserWay]
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