Blog: Fundraising for WPCampus Gutenberg Accessibility Audit

Last month, WPCampus released a request for proposals to conduct an accessibility audit of the WordPress Gutenberg editor. This audit will help higher education institutions, and the whole WordPress community, make informed decisions about when and how to upgrade to the new editor.

We received numerous proposals and our selection committee is hard at work, reviewing and evaluating each and every one. We’re not ready to announce our selection, but we’re hoping to finalize the vendor and release an updated timeline for the audit soon.

We’re going to need your help to make it happen.

A professional accessibility audit is a large expense for a small nonprofit like WPCampus.

Accessibility is important to all of us in the WordPress community. We’re asking for your help to fund the audit and ensure this important research is completed.

Every dollar counts. If you’re willing and able to support this project, please consider donating.

Donate to fund the Gutenberg accessibility audit

Our initial fundraising goal

Here’s the awkward part: we don’t actually know how much money we need yet.

Each of the proposals we received approaches the audit a little differently, and each one comes with a different price tag. Until our selection committee chooses a vendor, we don’t actually know how much this will cost.

With that in mind, we’re setting a target fundraising goal somewhere in the middle, between the lowest and highest proposals: $30,000.

When we select a vendor, we’ll announce exactly how much the audit will cost. When you contribute, you’ll have the option of signing up for our newsletter, which will be the best source for updates.

If the final amount is more than what we raise, we may need to ask for more contributions. If we raise more than we need, we’ll designate the extra money for accessibility efforts like the following:

  • Future accessibility audits (either of Gutenberg or of other parts of WordPress)
  • Live captioning at our events
  • Captioning all our recorded conference sessions and podcasts
  • Accessibility professional development opportunities for WPCampus members

What you get when you donate

No fancy swag or Kickstarter-style rewards. But when the accessibility audit is complete, WPCampus will publish the final report, and any supporting documents, on its website. The report will be free and open to the public.

We’ll also post your name, company, or organization on our website to recognize and thank you for helping make this happen. You may also donate anonymously, if that’s your preference.

FYI: WPCampus is a nonprofit organization, but does not have 501c3 status. Your donation will not be tax deductible.

View existing donors

What happens next

We’re hoping to select and announce a vendor soon. Once that happens, we’ll update our fundraising goal and our project timeline. We’re still aiming to release the audit report by January 17, 2019, but that date may shift slightly as we work with the vendor.

Once the report is complete, we’ll be sharing its findings in as many different ways as we can. We want this to be useful for everyone in the higher ed and WordPress communities, whether you’re a designer, developer, manager, or content creator.

If that sounds useful to you (and we hope it does), please consider donating!

We’re excited to announce that Automattic has pledged to ensure our accessibility audit of Gutenberg is fully funded.

Thank you to Matt and the Automattic team for your contribution. If you’d like to be a part of this vital community effort, you can still donate! Every dollar helps send a message that accessibility matters to the WordPress community.

$10,048 of $30,000 raised
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This donation form is powered by the Give WordPress plugin. A big thank-you to Impress.org for donating a license.

Our Generous Donors

Patrick Rauland

$10 December 13, 2018

Christine Laikind

$25 December 7, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

I am a deaf entrepreneur and speaker. As an advocacy speaker, I make the case not just for me but for others. The web is supposed to be inclusive for all - not exclusive. Today we depend on the "web" just as much as we cannot imagine being without our smartphones. We access our financial information, go shopping, get medical records or prescriptions, apply for jobs, order food and have it delivered, get education and so on - and when there are barriers or obstacles, it prevents access to opportunities and well-being.

Marcel Bootsman

nostromo.nl $13 December 7, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

It matters to everybody

Fernando Tellado

$13 December 7, 2018

Michael Torbert

All in One SEO Pack $1,030 December 7, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

As developers of software with several million users, accessibility is very important to us. WordPress publishing should share the core value of inclusivity, and be available to all, regardless of physical ability.

Lauren Etheridge

$20 December 7, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

Accessibility matters to me because the web is for everyone which means all people should have access to it.

Pressbooks

$200 December 6, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

Pressbooks is committed to ensuring that our software is accessible to users and readers. An accessible editor is a critical part of this, and we applaud this community-driven effort to make Gutenberg accessible for all.

Mark Buskbjerg

$11 December 6, 2018

Maddy Osman

The Blogsmith $20 December 6, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

The internet should be free and open to anyone who wants to use it. We can always be improving on existing best practices!

Amanda Lundberg

$52 December 6, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

I work with accessibility every day. You’d be amazed what people can accomplish when they have the same access to knowledge that many of us take for granted.

Micah Dailey

WPMU DEV $26 December 6, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

I've been working on a podcast project, and on one of the episodes I spoke with a friend of mine who depends on assistive technology. In that conversation he spoke about how his disability becomes "less of a disability" as technology advances, and barriers are removed. I want to be somebody that helps remove barriers for others, and stands up with/for people who are in the margins.

Jeffrey Stevens

$15 December 5, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

Accessibility ensures the web can be used by every person in our society. In democratizes information and sets a standard for which we all should strive for in a unified, caring society.

Rachael Kelly

$26 December 5, 2018

Sé Reed

$100 December 5, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

Accessibility matters to me because I want people to be able to participate and contribute however they can. We need everybody’s input to make something that works for everybody, both in WordPress and in society in general.

My question is, why doesn’t it matter to everyone?

shines & jecker laboratories

$258 December 5, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

Accessibility makes better experiences for every user and code writer.

Craig Hyatt

University of Guelph $52 December 5, 2018

Anonymous

$26 December 4, 2018

Reaktiv Studios

$515 December 4, 2018

Maryann Reissig

$52 December 4, 2018

Daniel Messina

$11 December 4, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

It's simply fundamental

Christina Hendricks

$26 December 4, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

We all have various needs for technology to work so that it is accessible to us. It's just that for many people those needs are met but for some they are not. It doesn't make sense to me that that should be the case--why meet the accessibility needs of some (e.g., those with good vision) but not those of others? It's not like some people need something special to have technology be accessible; we all need special things for it to work but for some reason some of those become invisible as just "normal" needs and others seem "special." Also makes no sense to me.

Mike Kirby

$26 December 4, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

Accessibility helps fulfill the promise of the Internet, making information available globally to all who want it, regardless of what personal accommodations they may require.

Daniel Spillers

$26 December 4, 2018

Jayson T. Cote

GetWorkerFIT $103 December 4, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

I’m a senior technology officer and WP developer, I work with many different demographics and target audiences where accessibility is critical. Information should be accessible no matter your physical or menta status or limitation.

Evan Mullins

$26 December 4, 2018

Phil Barker

$21 December 4, 2018

Danny Cooper

FontsPlugin $26 December 4, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

WordPress should be accessible to everyone.

Peter Hebert

Rex Rana Design and Development Ltd. $35 December 3, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

The web should be open to all people regardless of abilities - and everyone should have equal access to publish to the web.

Steel Wagstaff

Pressbooks $52 December 3, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

There are lots of different humans in the world. I want to welcome as many of them as wish to be included into the spaces and tools we build and use online.

SkyVerge

$258 December 2, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

Everyone should be able to experience the future of WordPress to the fullest and making Gutenberg more accessible is an important part of that.

Martin Dower

Connected-uk.com LLP $103 December 1, 2018

Rachelle Soller

$11 December 1, 2018

Renee Johnson

$26 December 1, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

WordPress, the web, the world are better when all have access. Inclusivity is revolutionary.

Audras Jean-Baptiste

Whodunit $52 December 1, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

As WordPress accessibility team reps, I'm deeply engaged in WordPress, Web Standards and Web Accessibility.

Joe Devon

Diamond $103 November 30, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

It’s 2018. This should be self evident. Looking at popularity of frameworks, Wordpress accessibility would have about as big an impact as you can get.

Matt Graham

$52 November 30, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

I’m a WordPress junkie, but not so much lately, due to the flippant attitude of accessibility in Gutenberg.

My son is blind. He has expressed that he wants to “work with daddy and build websites.” What are his options to work with his dad if the tools his dad uses aren’t accessible?

That, Matt Mullenweg is the “imaginary bar” that I’ve set for the 5.0 team.

Mark CIotola

$11 November 30, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

1) I care about people with disabilities. 2) I believe universal design is good for everyone. 3) Accessibility is legally required for my university.

Alison Knott

Eraserheader Design $39 November 30, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

No one should be barred from accessing information because of the shortsightedness of website creators, designers or developers. Everyone should have fair access. Period.

Jennifer McFarland

NC State University $78 November 30, 2018

Phill Coxon

$11 November 30, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

When we are fully enabled we often fail to notice the struggles that others face online on a daily basis. It's important we make the extra effort to understand and acknowledge our privilege and create inclusivity so that as many people as possible can access and effectively use online services.

Chris Teitzel

Lockr $40 November 30, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

We believe the foundation of the web lies in its ability to level the playing field so anyone can do and create whatever they want. It's critical that we continue to keep the web accessible to keep that foundation intact. Our hope is that by making the web accessible, it can influence the offline world as well.

Brian DeConinck

NC State University $103 November 30, 2018

DAWN PEDERSEN

Painted by Dawn $26 November 30, 2018

Shawn Hooper

$26 November 30, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

Ever since I saw two users with disabilities *attempt* to use a website I built in the late 90s, I've understood that we can do better in making websites that are accessible to everyone. Whether you have a permanent disability or are just temporarily disabled, you should have the same access to information as everyone else.

Roy Sivan

ARC CTRL, INC. & YouTooCanBeGuru $103 November 30, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

#a11y matters to us because we dream of a web as we dream of our world, experiences open to everyone. Exclusivity doesn't have a place anymore in our society, Inclusivity does.

Dan Dulaney

$26 November 30, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

Accessibility is something that is dear to my heart. My wife uses a screen reader to access the web, and the ability to build and interact without limits is something that should be available to everyone. As a developer, I want to be able to help provide that same experience to every user.

Pantheon

$2,060 November 30, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

Accessibility matters to us because the importance of inclusivity is very important at Pantheon. We feel that everyone should have an equal opportunity to content and overall experience while on online and beyond. <3

Kathy Zant

$30 November 30, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

The web is about accessibility of information, and the power of WordPress has been built upon these principles. Ensuring WordPress supports accessibility going forward is an important part of securing the platform in these principles.

Joan Concilio and Dan Herman

Technical Penguins $37 November 30, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

We have a daughter with perceptual differences (autism) and it matters a ton that she can get information in an easy-to-understand way. We want to change the culture around accessibility - so that people see it as the right thing to do, not "the letter of the law" or "extra work," and about way more than just automated closed-captioning.

Steffen Dressler

11byt.es $26 November 30, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

Accessibility makes sure that everyone can take part in the online world.

Bradley Allen

$11 November 29, 2018

Jeremy Felt

$103 November 29, 2018

Happy Prime

$258 November 29, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

Building a web for everyone is the cornerstone of democratizing publishing. The first step to making information available is making it accessible.

Miles Elliott

NC State University $21 November 29, 2018

Jeremy Butler

$25 November 29, 2018

Mark Root-Wiley

MRW Web Design / Nonprofit WP $25 November 29, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

We will never recognize the dream of a web that connects the world without including the needs of everyone in the products we build.

John Johnston

$11 November 29, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

WordPress should be for all.

Michelle Schulp

Marktime Media $11 November 29, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

It's an investment in the future of the internet.

Matt Ryan

$10 November 29, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

The promise of the WordPress platform is that anyone can create and manage their own website. Therefore, WordPress authorship should not be limited to any particular set of people.

GravityView

$258 November 29, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

Accessibility benefits everyone. WordPress should remain a leader in accessible publishing.

Lorna Campbell

$21 November 29, 2018

Sara Clark

$26 November 29, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

Accessibility is about making the world a better place where everyone can learn, contribute and grow.

Rich Tabor

ThemeBeans $26 November 29, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

A more accessible WordPress (and Gutenberg) is better for everyone. As the leading website CMS powering millions of sites, it is paramount that WordPress is the bar for accessibility. And as a community, we have a responsibility to build for accessibility.

WPExplorer

$250 November 28, 2018

Josh Pollock

CalderaWP $26 November 28, 2018

David Ryan

Bluehost $30 November 28, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

Internet access is a human right and modern necessity for most people. I support us the WordPress Community being informed about where we can improve to make the internet a powerful tool for everyone to make a difference and be heard.

Carleton College

$500 November 28, 2018

Ned Zimmerman

Pressbooks $103 November 28, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

Thirty percent of the web includes many differences in experience and ability, and the work we do building WordPress and the open web should strive to be inclusive of all!

Adrian Roselli

Adrian Roselli LLC $103 November 28, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

Accessibility matters to everyone — injured, encumbered, distracted, disabled everyone. Accessibility in WordPress matters to my clients because some of their people require it in order to use the tool and therefore stay gainfully employed.

Robin Cornett

$52 November 28, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

When I was navigating stores with three small children, stores which helped me with automatic doors, wide aisles, and shopping carts for a crowd often made the decision for me as to whether I could shop at all. As we create content and build tools for the internet, we should be doing all we can to ensure the best online experience we can for everyone.

Michelle Ames

$26 November 28, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

I believe that WordPress needs to be available and accessible to every user.

Lori Packer

$52 November 28, 2018

Rachel Cherry

WPCampus $103 November 28, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

Accessibility matters because we should be working to ensure equal access to technology and information for all users. A focus on accessible technology also means a focus on a high-quality and highly usable web, which means a better experience for all.

Nate Conley

$26 November 28, 2018

Kevin Hoffman

$25 November 28, 2018

Joni Halabi

$21 November 28, 2018

Jason Bahl

WPGraphQL $26 November 28, 2018

Mike Little

$103 November 28, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

As the platform that democratises publishing, we can't allow new features in WordPress to take that away from users with accessibility needs.

Sukil Etxenike

$26 November 28, 2018

Kyrie Tompkins-Overlock

Overlock Design Co. $11 November 28, 2018

Jason Woodward

State & Plain $52 November 28, 2018

Carole Olinger

$52 November 28, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

I care a lot about inclusion, accessibility and diversity inside the WordPress project and in general.
I help to create welcoming and accessible events for everybody whenever I can.
I am not a coder which means I can't really help when it comes to improving the accessibility of the software itself.
This is an opportunity for me to contribute in some other way to point WordPress in the right direction (again).

Mike Richwalsky

Gas Mark 8, Ltd. $5 November 27, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

Accessibility is a basic human right, and especially technology, which touches so many parts of our lives.

Amanda Rush

Customer Servant Consultancy $50 November 27, 2018

Pagely, Inc.

$1,030 November 27, 2018

The WP Steward

$103 November 27, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

Accessibility is human rights. And human rights are important.

Pgogy Webstuff

$258 November 27, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

Hate to think of a world in which people are stopped from doing things because they've been overlooked or neglected

Bridget Willard

You, Too, Can Be a Guru $26 November 27, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

It matters to me because I'm someone who a) uses keyboard navigation a lot (old-school secretary training) and I watch TV with captioning. Not only that, but I spend a considerable amount of time reading websites online (10-12 hours a day) and find many sites difficult to read even with my blue-tinted reading glasses.

John Hawkins

The University of Alabama, College of Arts & Sciences $26 November 27, 2018

Paul van Buuren

WBVB Rotterdam $26 November 27, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

I am not my user.

Catherine Derecki

$11 November 27, 2018

Why accessibility matters to me:

Accessibility is at the heart of a free and open web.

Brian DeConinck

$10 November 27, 2018

WPCampus

WPCampus is a community of web professionals, educators, and others dedicated to the growth of WordPress in higher education. Our mission is to advance colleges and universities by providing a support structure and wealth of knowledge for anyone who uses, or is interested in using, WordPress.

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