Making social media inclusive – Active Impact's New Year’s resolution

January 09, 2019

As we enter 2019, we hear a lot about New Year’s resolutions. Each one valid and important to their maker, bringing hope and promise of ‘change’ or ‘improvement’ in our lives.

Towards the end of 2018, we came across a blog about something so simple and easy to do; something that, in a generation of social media users, should be second nature to us all; image descriptions. Reading more about making social media inclusive has inspired our New Year’s resolution for 2019, one we wanted to share with you, and hope you will join us in!


Image descriptions – the details

Image descriptions are a free tool that we all have access to on our social media platforms. They embed a description of your photo on social media posts.

An image description is a short description of the image you are using to accompany your post. It is a simply written description to explain what you see.

Twitter has an inbuilt image description function whilst your image description on Facebook and Instagram sits in the captions field.

Image descriptions make your whole social media post accessible for people who may not be able to see the image, use a screen reader or want the image described. It improves the accessibility of social media posts and makes your social media more inclusive.


Small changes make a big difference

Adding a description of your image on social media may seem like a small addition to your post but it really can make a huge difference.

One blogger turns to the words of Len Burns, a blind facebook user, to look at the importance of image descriptions:

Each time I am excluded from your conversations because a photo is undescribed, stings. When the ‘sting’ is multiplied hundreds of times per day, I feel excluded and unvalued.

If inclusion matters to you, really matters, describe the next photo you post, the one after that, and before you know, it will become a habit. 

If inclusion is a core value, please think before you post.”


Therefore, our resolution here at Active Impact is simple yet inclusive; To include image descriptions on all social media posts. What’s yours?

Follow Active Impact on social media as we learn more about image descriptions, see real examples and find out more about inclusive opportunities, news and events.



Active Impact Newsletter – December 2018