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Internet Accessibility Essay

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Two of the most important inventions in the last 50 years include the Internet and the World Wide Web. Over 1.96 billion people currently use the Internet around the world.


Current statistics on world Internet usage and population from the Internet World Stats Web site.

However, many of those people are unable to access the information on the Internet fully. Using the United States as an example, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, in 2005 “among the population 15 years and older, 7.8 million people (3.4 percent) had difficulty seeing words or letters in ordinary newspaper print, and 1.8 million of these people reported being unable to see,” (3). According to the National Center for Health Statistics, in 2008 25.2 million American adults have reported experiencing vision loss, including those who wear corrective lenses and those who are completed blind. In 1999, the Census Bureau reported that just over 1.5 million of visually impaired people had access to the Internet. Since 2000, Internet usage in the United States has nearly doubled, increasing by 93.46 percent according to statistics reported by Internet World Stats.

YEAR Population Users % Pop. Broadband Usage Source
2000 281,421,906 124,000,000 44.1 % n/a ITU

2001 285,317,559 142,823,008 50.0 % n/a ITU

2002 288,368,698 167,196,688 58.0 % n/a ITU

2003 290,809,777 172,250,000 59.2 % n/a ITU

2004 293,271,500 201,661,159 68.8 % n/a Nielsen Online

2005 299,093,237 203,824,428 68.1 % n/a Nielsen Online

2007 301,967,681 212,080,135 70.2 % n/a Nielsen Online

2008 303,824,646 220,141,969 72.5 % n/a Nielsen Online

2009 307,212,123 227,719,000 74.1 % n/a Nielsen Online

2010 310,232,863 239,893,600 77.3 % 85,287,100 ITU


United States Intern...


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...icid=50&folderid=7>.
Internet Usage Statistics, The Internet Big Picture, World Internet Users and Population Stats. Internet World Stats, 31 March 2011. Web. 31 March 2011. .
Introduction to Web Accessibility. Web Accessibility Initiative, September 2005. Web. 31 March 2011. < http://www.w3.org/WAI/intro/accessibility.php>.
Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Pub. L. No. 93-112. Sec. 508. 26 September 1973. Print.
United States. Census Bureau. Americans With Disabilities: 2005. Washington: GPO, 2008. Print.
United States. Center for Disease Control. National Center for Health Statistics. National Health Interview Survey. Washington: GPO, 2008. Print.
29 USC. Sec. 794d. 1998. Print.
Web Accessibility History. Las Positas College, 30 May 2009. Web. 31 March 2011. .


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