The Internet opens up many opportunities for people with disabilities.  Most fundamentally, the Internet is liberating.  For example, people with visual impairments can read the daily newspaper the minute it is published, rather than wait for a taped transcription. The participants in our study embrace the Web, and most said that they would never want to give up their Internet connection.  Every user mentioned at least one thing that they can do using the Web that they could not do before.  As in our previous Web user studies, participants Web use varied greatly: Everyone has different interests and needs.  The beauty of the Web is the diversity of specialized things it lets users do.  While the opportunity is certainly there, the Web is unfortunately very far from fulfilling its potential to serve users with disabilities.  Inaccessible and unusable sites abound.  Even sites that are theoretically accessible often have low usability for people with disabilities.  Our studies indicate that Web usability is about three times better for sighted users than for users with visual impairments.  Most of the usability problems are not quite as severe for users with motor skill challenges.  However, these users would be much better served if sites were designed with accessibility in mind and followed usability guidelines for users with disabilities.
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