What to write
- Topic: As we describe on our website, the ProtestAccess blog is focused on content related to accessibility and accessibility-focused mutual aid groups. We welcome posts on any topics that fall into these categories.
- Make sure you can answer the question, “What do you want your reader to understand after reading this post?” Then, make sure your answer to that question is expressed clearly throughout your post.
- Make sure the topic of your post is specific.
- Personal stories are fine to include as part of your post but not your entire post. In other words, make sure that your personal stories are connected to what you want your reader to learn.
- If you are not sure what topic you want to write about, check out our topic ideas bank.
- We will not publish blog posts in the following categories:
- Fiction, poetry, or other kinds of art
- Promotions of a specific product or service
- Audience: Our audience is people who are interested in making their work and their organizing accessible. Some people might have professional, volunteer, or lived experience with accessibility in some way, while others may be at the beginning of their learning.
- We encourage you to familiarize yourself with plain language guidelines.
- Please choose your words carefully. Do not use language that is ableist, racist, or derogatory in any way. Self-defined is one useful resource you can use as a starting point.
- For now, we are only able to publish posts written in English.
- Originality: All blog posts need to be the original work of the author.
- This includes posts that are your original work but that you have already published somewhere else.
- Length: Aim for 1000 to 1500 words.
- Title: Title your post! Otherwise, we will title it for you. Aim for 9 words or fewer if possible.
- Name: Make sure to include the name you would like published alongside your post. We invite you to include your pronouns as well.
- Bio: We invite you to include a short biography of yourself (recommended length: up to 100 words), including any links to your website or social media.
- Structure: We encourage you to use headings to break your blog post into sections. Using this structure will make your post easier to read. However, using headings and sections is not a requirement.
- Content warnings: Please note whether your post contains discussion, representation, or mention of sensitive topics.
- Citations: If your post includes research, quotes, etc., please cite your sources.
- You do not need to follow any particular citation style.
- You can cite your sources by linking to them in the text of your post.
- Other links: You are welcome to include links aside from citations. For example, you can include links to relevant resources you want to share with readers.
- Multimedia: While it is not required, you are welcome to include images and/or videos in your post if you would like.
- To avoid images being taken down later at the request of the owner, we recommend using either your own images or royalty free stock images. Images and videos must be attributed to the source.
- Provide alt text and an image description for any images in your post.
- Make sure any videos in your post are captioned and ideally also transcribed.
- If you need support making the multimedia accessible, check out our recommended multimedia accessibility resources at the bottom of this page.
Please try to follow the guidance in this section. All posts will be edited in line with this guidance.
Formatting and Structure
- Use hyperlinks instead of full URLs.
- Don’t do this: https://www.protestaccess.org/
- Do this: ProtestAccess
- Make sure it is clear where hyperlinks will take the reader. Do not link just the word/phrase “here,” “more,” “click here,” etc. Link enough words that the reader knows where the link is leading them.
- Avoid using text styles (bold, italics, underlining, font color, highlighting).
- If you want to use text styles, bold is best.
- If you are using text styles, make sure the meaning is still clear to someone reading it without that style.
- Shorter paragraphs are great! It’s recommended to have blank space within your document rather than a “wall of text.”
We are planning a more nuanced discussion of language as an upcoming blog post. We’ll link it when we publish it, but for now here are some basics.
- Always capitalize the B in Black.
- Don’t use all caps for style or emphasis. Only use all caps in cases of acronyms or initialisms.
- Use camel case within hashtags (in other words, capitalize the first letter of each word within the hashtag). Example: #BlackLivesMatter
Topic Ideas Bank
Need an idea for the topic of your post? Here are some topics you can choose from. Of course, you are welcome to blog about an idea of your own!
- What do you wish mutual aid groups or other organizing groups did to make their work more accessible?
- What did your group do to make its work more accessible? What were the challenges? What did you learn from the process?
- Explain the how and why of a particular type of accessibility that you’ve incorporated into your organizing
- Discuss examples/experiences demonstrating why accessibility is specifically important for anti-racist organizing
Multimedia Accessibility Resources
- How to Write Alt Text and Image Descriptions by Veronica Lewis.
- Check out Veronica’s archive of posts related to alt text and image descriptions for more detailed examples.
- If you are not a screen reader user, you can check if an image has alt text using the “Inspect” or “Inspect Element” feature in your browser.
- Here are three free auto-captioning apps, and here are seven more captioning apps (with a mix of auto-captioning and manual captioning functions). There are many other free and paid apps out there!