a11yTips — Include decorative images using CSS




Include decorative images using CSS

Make sure decorative images are embedded using CSS and not HTML markup

One of the ways through which CSS improves accessibility for people with disabilities is by allowing authors to add decorative images and images used exclusively for visual formatting to pages without requiring additional HTML markup within the content. This not only results in a cleaner separation between the presentation and structure layers, it also makes for a more streamlined code base. Embedding images and other visual elements using CSS guarantees that assistive technologies will be ignoring that content. As long as these images are indeed, truly presentational in nature and do not convey any relevant information or meaning to the page, using CSS to embed images can be a perfectly viable approach to more accessible web content.

To do so, simply embed images that are either decorative or do not convey any meaning using the CSS background property, instead of the IMG element. As screen readers are built to ignore background images by default, users will never even hear about them and will be able to concentrate on the content that provides real value. As an added bonus, browsers that can ignore or turn off [...]

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