Adding alt text on Mastodon has been around roughly as long as Twitter. It took about 10 months to roll out between 2016 and 2017. What I love about the issue discussion is that once the matter was raised, nobody argued against it.

github.com/mastodon/mastodon/i

One of the joys of open source software is that the user gets to participate in and have a window into the development process.

More recently...there is an on going discussion over whether or not to introduce Twitter's ALT button overlay to Mastodon.

github.com/mastodon/mastodon/i

One of the commenters linked to their own evaluation of the ALT feature on Twitter:

adrianroselli.com/2022/04/keyb

A good read.

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Anyway, taking inspiration from those discussions I've injected some CSS (gist.github.com/FiXato/3de505b) to a11y.social that surrounds images with a dotted red border if they DO NOT have alt text.

As a sighted user, I found Twitter's ALT button useful for deciding whether or not to offer up a description in a reply.

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Here is a quick test. If you are browsing Mastodon from the a11y.social instance you should see a red border around the image attached to this post. If you are on a different instance, tell your admin to add the CSS linked in my previous toot!

Alt text (intentionally excluded from image): a German Shepherd asleep on a couch with a tennis ball in its mouth.

Interesting. So because I edited the first post, an empty alt attribute was added to the image which breaks the highlighting rule in CSS.

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@mark Thanks for adding the Alt text feature. Really helpful.

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The Accessibility Social

A Mastodon community for all with a focus on accessibility, assistive technology, and the interests of the broader disability community.