Hachette Livre has signed the Accessible Books Consortium (ABC) Charter. By signing ABC’s Charter for Accessible Publishing, Hachette Livre, which is the third-largest book publisher for the general public in the world, is committing to making its products fully accessible to all readers, including persons who are blind, visually impaired, or otherwise print disabled.
The Charter contains eight high-level principles relating to the production of digital publications in accessible formats, including the promotion of the adoption of accessibility standards throughout the supply chain, testing digital publications for accessibility and incorporating appropriate feature descriptions and metadata.
Arnaud NOURRY, Hachette Livre Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, said:
“For the book industry, making books accessible to the widest readership, including readers who are blind, visually impaired, or print disabled, not only makes economic sense, but is a moral imperative. If we, publishers, do not pioneer this duty on an industrial level, who will ?”
WIPO Director General Francis Gurry said: « We are pleased to see a growing number of key industry players signing the Charter for Accessible Publishing. This advances our global efforts to increase the number of books available for use by people with print disabilities.” He added: “Hachette Livre is a world-leading publisher and its membership will make a big difference in making accessible format books available to blind and visually impaired persons. »
Last year, Hachette Livre won the 2018 ABC International Excellence Award for Accessible Publishing in the publisher category. Hachette Livre was commended by the selection jury for its implementation of “born accessible” production processes in the EPUB3 format in France and for its implementation of mandatory accessibility conformance testing for all of its trade publications through the use of the recently created “Accessibility Checker for EPUB” known as Ace. When its accessibility features are used correctly, EPUB3 is the gold standard in the publishing industry for the production of accessible digital books.
About the Accessible Books Consortium:
The Accessible Books Consortium is a public –private partnership led by WIPO that brings together all of the key players – non-governmental organizations representing people who are blind, visually impaired or otherwise print-disabled, authors, publishers, collective management organizations, libraries and other authorized entities, as well as standards bodies. ABC was established after the 2013 adoption of the Marrakesh Treaty, which now has 57 contracting parties covering 84 countries, since the European Union ratified the treaty as one bloc. ABC aims to increase the number of books worldwide in accessible formats – such as braille, audio and large print – and to make them available to people who are print disabled.
About Hachette Livre:
Hachette Livre, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Lagardère SCA, is the third-largest trade and educational publishing group in the world, with sales of €2,252 million in 2018. It is # 1 in France, # 2 in the UK, # 3 in Spain and # 4 in the USA. It publishes around 17,000 new titles a year under more than one hundred different imprints in a dozen languages, but mainly in French, English and Spanish. It covers all segments of trade publishing: general fiction and non-fiction, mass market pocket books, books for young readers, illustrated books, travel guides, school books and study guides, as well as partworks. Its headquarters are in Vanves, France. www.hachette-livre.com
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