Accessible media player resources and demos

Note: Last updated July 7th, 2017 to include the Web Experience Project media player and captioning legal requirements from the USA. If you have a suggested link leave a comment and I’ll add it.

Below are a few resources around media player accessibility. With so many of us embedding multimedia content in our sites and apps it’s key that we think about not just the accessibility of the player but also alternative formats, the user journey to the player and onward journeys from the player.

If you have a suggested link let me know.


Below are a collection of formal guidelines from W3C.

  • Media Accessibility User Requirements – This document presents the accessibility requirements users with disabilities have with respect to audio and video on the web.
  • WebVTT: The Web Video Text Tracks Format – WebVTT files provide captions or subtitles for video content, and also text video descriptions [MAUR], chapters for content navigation, and more generally any form of metadata that is time-aligned with audio or video content.
  • Flash 17 – Providing keyboard access to Flash objects – Techniques for Flash
  • Multimedia accessibility FAQ – W3C’s internal multimedia accessibility policy is in place to ensure that W3C’s work is accessible to all, including people with disabilities who cannot hear audio or see video, and to ensure that it meets W3C’s own standards
  • User Agent Accessibility Guidelines – UAAG 2.0 guides developers in designing user agents that make the web more accessible to people with disabilities. User agents include browsers, media players and applications that render web content. Specifically the following guidelines:
  • Timed Text Markup Language (TTML1) –  can be used for subtitles and captions and support a rich set of styling and position information.
  •  Profiles for Internet Media Subtitles and Captions (IMSC 1: TTML) specifies two profiles of TTML, one for text based subtitles, the other for image based ones. This specification is being referenced by MPEG in its Common Media Application Framework (CMAF) work, and for that reason Apple recently announced support for it in their upcoming operating system releases due in the autumn.

Below are a list of standards and guidelines outside of W3C that relate to multimedia accessibility.

Accessible Media players

Disclaimer: I have not tested all the players below so they are self-proclaimed accessible players.

Alternative formats

This section covers captions / subtitles, sign language and audio description.


Audio description

Captioning / Subtitles

Captioning legal requirements from the USA

Below is a list of standards and guidelines outside of WCAG that I believe relate to the legal requirement for captioning in the USA:. The following list is evolving:


HTML5 video

Blogs and articles

Disclaimer: I was not sidetracked into watching any TV in researching this blog post. Not one bit.

9 thoughts on “Accessible media player resources and demos

  1. It’s worth noting that MediaElementJS has received a lot of accessibility attention towards their next release, and should be in great shape when that release comes out. (Not that I have a date for that.)

  2. Pingback: Weekly Roundup of Web Design and Development Resources: November 6, 2014

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