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The e-commerce.

Disability Discrimination


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Just wondering now that firms in the UK have to make their websites accesible to disabled people by law (Disability Discrimination Act). How is OSCommerce equiped to provide easy web browsing for disabled people, if at all?


Thanks Guys,



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To enable full access for disabled people there are a number of things that need to be done to osCommerce..


XHTML helps here but is not provided by default in osCommerce. It is up to the shop owner to ensure they comply with local laws as we cannot provide a solution to cover every single legal requirement worldwide.


Making osCommerce XHTML compatible will be much simpler after we get the templates integrared into the catalog however.

Mark Evans

osCommerce Monkey & Lead Guitarist for "Sparky + the Monkeys" (Album on sale in all good record shops)



Software is like sex: It's better when it's free. (Linus Torvalds)

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Just some ramblings...


This is a good point, and one that has crossed my mind before.


However, like most people (I would guess) running web sites, I'm not even certain what the legislation says (ok - I'm being lazy - I should look).


I have my doubts about how easy it would be to make OSC pass the legislation though (whatever it is). The same probably goes for most ready-made web software out there though, I would guess.


...and how do you test it for compliance ?



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For anyone who is not aware:


The Disability Discrimination Act was passed in 1995 and came into force in three sections;


1/ Employment rights and first rights of access; 2nd December 1996

2/ Further rights of access (services); 1st October 1999

3/ Final rights of access (physical access); 1st October 2004


Websites are covered by the 2nd Part of the Act (1st October 1999) as they are a service; it doesn?t matter if the product you are selling is a product which cannot cater for some disabilities, the website selling it is counted as a separate service under the law and must comply with the Act.


The language used in the Act doesn?t make it immediately clear whether websites are covered by part 2 or part 3, this confusion was removed by the Disability Rights Commission in 2002 with the publication of their Code of Practice: ?An airline company provides a flight reservation and booking service to the public on its website. This is a provision of a service and is subject to the Act?.


Thus, sites built within the last few years should be DDA compliant - if they are not, then they have been breaking UK Law for at least the last 3 years...

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It would be hard going though if you were running an OS-Commerce Store and somone managed to get you to pay out due to a lack of disability support/access etc.


I have no idea what the rules are about this, along with probably 90% of other osc users who could end up in a bad/tricky situation.

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