Testing Alt tags

If one does not have a screen reader, is there a quick way to test alt tags without software installation?

Also, I have read that whatever label appears in the timeline is what is read by default by the screen reader (unless changed in the alt tag field). My question is which part is actually read. The text outside the timeline (on the left) or the text on the objects shown on the timeline?

So using the first object from the timeline image below as an example, will References1 be what the screen reader will read or Marker?



10 Replies
Ashley Terwilliger-Pollard

Hi Michael,

I don't know of a way to "preview" alt tags outside of a screen reader. Hopefully someone in the community has additional information to share. In regards to what the screen reader will read out - you'll see some information detailed here about elements that are added to the reading of the tag. 

Ashley Terwilliger-Pollard

Hi Michael, 

If you haven't added any text to the alt tag set up, I believe the screen reader will read the file name or the title of the object as listed on the timeline (the element to the left hand side). Have you tested it with a screen reader and found a different or inconsistent behavior? You'll also want to make sure you're using the latest update of Storyline 2, Update 5 as it added a number of new accessibility features. 

Natasha Bomba

Hi. Following up on the same question about what is actually read. If it's just the item on the left, does that mean text box content won't be read (it's usually on the right)? I would like to know what really makes a difference if we are renaming objects as I would like my team to be as efficient as possible.

Kuriko A

Hi Natasha and Michael, one thing you should be aware of is that even if you go to the effort of adding Alt text to an image to avoid the screen reader reading out the file name, you may find that it doesn't work, due to this bug.  

Here are some tips to answer your questions about what objects need to be updated with Alt text.

  • Text boxes - Screen reader will read the content of the text boxes, as Ashley mentioned.
  • Shapes - Screen reader will read the text to the left of the timeline (e.g. Rectangle 1), unless you update the Alt text. 
  • Markers - Screen reader will read out 'Marker (button)' for all markers on your screen. Even if the text to the left of the timeline says 'Marker 1' or 'Marker 3', it will still just say 'Marker'. If you update the Alt text, it will read the Alt text you assign.
  • Images - Screen reader will read out the the file name (e.g. purple-rectangle.png), unless you update the Alt text. If you update the Alt text before adding states to the image, the screen reader will read the Alt text you have assigned. However, if you update the Alt text after adding states to the image, the screen reader will still only read the file name (e.g. purple-rectangle.png). This is because of the bug I mentioned earlier. 
Wendy Farmer

Hi Kuriko

I was just watching the video you posted and noticed that you were pulling the images from a synced dropbox folder - have you tested having the images stored in another folder on your local drive.  I've had issues before using assets from a local dropbox folder and could account for the odd behaviour of the screen reader - just a thought.