Politics

by / Filed under Web

I don’t mean Conservative and Labour, Democrat and Republican or Socialist and Christian Democrat (the correct answers are Labour, Democrat and Socialist, incidentally).

Web design is inherently political. The choices you make determine who can access the information your design communicates. This extends beyond not using tables and making content intelligible to screen readers.

Are you thinking about your readers’ eyesight? Their manual dexterity? Whether they can afford a high spec mobile device? Whether they’re using dial up or broadband? Their education? Whether they can afford a computer with a modern operating system and broswer?

In other words: Are you making your text legible? Sizing using ems? Designing mobile first? Minimising the size of your files and using javascript that degrades gracefully? Using appropriate words and sentence and paragraph lengths? Making sites that at least render in IE6?

Web designers are in a privileged position. It’s simple to make sure all your readers can access content. And your boss doesn’t even have to know you’re taking the time to do it.