What does "barrier-free" mean?
Despite all laws, policies and initiatives, often only specialists are familiar with the term "barrier-free" or "accessibility". Although accessibility plays an important role in more and more areas of our society - from tourism to architecture and infrastructure, to telecommunications and information technology.
People with disabilities, seniors and immigrants
Many people can still not imagine that the internet has its limitations and barriers. Particularly affected are people with disabilities, senior citizens and people with a migration background. And that is quite a problem, because nowadays workplaces without basic technological equipment are rarely non existent. The internet is an integral part as an information and communication medium. Knowledge is available anytime, anywhere. But just the people who have acces can compete in terms of education and progress. Not only older people have often missed technological development in many areas. Also, people with little access to the achievements of information technology be left behind. Under the heading "digital integration" Europe is making various efforts to make the potential of information technology available to all people. In Germany the BITV is the statutory basis for this idea.
Accessible internet is "access for all"
Accessible Internet means that web pages can be read and operated by every user. Both the technical aspects (browser, operating system, device, etc.), as well as the substantive aspects (comprehensibility, ease of use). For example, a graphical navigation is of no use for blind people. Visually impaired can not read small texts in graphic format. To allow all people access to web information guidelines for accessible internet were developed. In Germany the BGG, the "Law on Equal Opportunities for Disabled People" and the "Regulation on the establishment of accessible information technology for the Disabled" § 1 BGG is the guidline: "Aim of this law is to eliminate and prevent discrimination against the disabled as well as to ensure equal participation of people with disabilities in social life and to enable disabled people to live a self-determined lifestyle. "