Discord introduces alt text through latest software update

Ben Bayliss1 minute read

Discord now allows users to add alternative text (alt text) to uploaded images following a new update.

Keeping in line with efforts to improve the accessibility of Discord, the company tweeted that users can now add alternative text to uploaded images. This update follows improvements to text-to-speech and keyboard drag-and-drop support.

Users on the desktop version of Discord will find themselves now capable of uploading 10 files at a time, with previews being available to view before sending. The alt text section of a file can be accessed by clicking the “Modify attachment” icon which will allow filename editing, alt text addition, and the option to mark a file as a spoiler.

While the purpose of the new feature is explained in the tweet, (Which ironically has no alt text applied itself), and the feature will likely be explained in the change notes when they become available, it would be nice to see an explanation for the alt text’s purpose highlighted. Most people aren’t educated on what alt text is actually used for and having some way of educating the userbase would help alleviate any confusion.

Discord released a dedicated accessibility menu earlier this year with updates being rolled out in the months since. Hopefully continued updates will help to make the service more inclusive for more users.

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Ben is the one in charge of keeping the content cogs at Can I Play That? turning. Deafness means that he has a focus on discussing captions, but with experience in consultancy and advocacy, he covers what bases he can. Having written about accessibility in video games at DualShockers, GamesRadar+, GamesIndustry.biz, Wireframe, and more he continues his advocacy at CIPT. He was actually awarded a Good Games Writing award for an article he wrote here! He enjoys a range of games, but anything that’s open-world and with a photo mode will probably be his cup of tea. You can get in touch with him at: ben@caniplaythat.com

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