Does anyone use Confluence with VoiceOver? I'm finding it a bit of a nightmare.
When editing comment, the focus seems to jump randomly about. It seems unusable in Chrome, but sometimes doable in Safari. Maybe the problem iin part is because I can see things scrolling madly around even though maybe it's not really affecting it from a VoiceOver point of view.
I have found when creating a new document, creating it in markdown and copy/pasting it in is a lot easier, although it does sometimes mess up the formatting (e.g. miss a heading and just show the hash and the text)
I'm particularly struggling with inline comments. Is there a way to get focus onto them? I can use N and P to navigate them, but it doesn't seem to put focus on them so I can't read them, just my eyes can see some blurry things scrolling around so I presume it's skipping to them.
Also, for ref pressing Shift and question mark will show a list of keyboard shortcuts.
Any tips for making Confluence less painful would be very welcome.
Your probably out of luck.
I use NVDA and Windows but have a similar experience to you. Have you considered opening a support ticket with them? I haven't bothered but maybe it would do some goodd?
Accessibility for Confluence
The Atlassian Marketplace offers for sale a plugin that my employer has been using in our Confluence instance for a few months now which makes the interface, including the editor, much more accessible to those using screen reading applications. It's one of the only marketplace apps available that deals with Confluence accessibility. More information and links to purchase the product can be found at https://marketplace.atlassian.com/apps/1213437/accessibility-for-confluence?tab=overview&hosting=datacenter.
Thanks, I had come across this plugin before but slightly dismissed it. Do plugins work in the cloud bitbucket? I'm also a bit loathe to ask for something like this to be installed, but maybe I'll have to swallow my pride.
It is scandalous that you need to pay extra to make it accessible.
I've whinged to Atlassian about various accessibility problems via the feedback but never got as far as raising a support ticket. I did see one about VoiceOver issues in Confluence or Jira and it had just sat there for years without being answered.
Welcome to the world of commercial business
And it seems you've learned your first lesson - if a third party company can charge for a feature that isn't in the core version of a product, then they will happily do just that. In this case, that feature is accessibility. Atlassian does what I'm sure it considers to be its best to make its products accessible, but with Confluence having the ability to accept third-party plugins and enhancements, and with a marketplace available for businesses to sell said enhancements, it was only a matter of time before someone came up with a better way to make Confluence accessible and realized they could make money off of it as well. The practice is not a scandal; it's just how business works, and some companies (such as the one at which I am employed) have shown they will be happy to pay the price. In fact, I'm sure that even if Atlassian put in much more work to make its products accessible, and responded to and implemented every piece of feedback users gave for improving accessibility, a third party would still come along with a plugin that either does accessibility differently or better than Atlassian, and they would be free to charge for it as they see fit. It's up to you the consumer, or in some cases the organization at which you are employed, to decide whether the purchase is justifiable to your needs and within your available budget.
As to whether the plugin works in the cloud environment of Confluence, you'll need to either check the marketplace listing for details or contact the vendor if this information is not readily available. I've only ever used the datacenter edition of Confluence so I can't attest to the plugin's compatibility (or lack thereof) with cloud instances.
Not a problem with the 3rd party
I don't have a problem with a 3rd party filling in a gap like this and charging for it, because it presumably needs work to keep it up to date.
But it is a problem if Atlassian thinks this is an acceptable alternative to writing their UIs properly.
I don't mind filing bug reports, but it is sometimes hard to find the energy when you have no particular expectation that anyone is going to do anything about it. Inevitably you can waste hours just on a single bug report. Or at least I can anyway.
Of course, that doesn't stop me wasting hours complaining about it on here.
Atlassian vs Accessibility
I thought my last comment was a bit weak so tried to report the bug but it told me I have to be my account administrator. I submitted a feedback but I don't think that achieves much.
But I did a bit of a google and found their accessibility page: https://www.atlassian.com/accessibility
I don't know how old this page is, but it is a published commitment to accessibility. There seems to be a way to report accessibility issues.
Ironically, the accessibility page wasn't working for me in Chrome. But recently Chrome has gone completely downhill with VoiceOver. When I got to the portal it told me to login. I'll have a play with it when I have more time.
This feels a bit more hopeful than the support page.
Perhaps Atlassian thinks this (allowing third parties to create solutions that improve the accessibility of Atlassian products) is an accessible alternative to writing user interfaces/etc. properly because they realize they can make money and allow third parties to make money from this alternative, without too much work / effort on their end. I personally think it's a great idea if businesses and individuals are willing to pay for it, and again most are. Those who aren't will just find another non-Atlassian product to use as an alternative to Confluence (i.e. Bookstack, SharePoint, Raneto, the list is endless). Atlassian sees this as a business opportunity and are taking full advantage of it, as they should. It may even be a win for the customer as perhaps third parties can do a better job at user interface accessibility than Atlassian themselves can.
I've never filed a bug with an Atlassian product so I unfortunately can't comment on that process because I have not yet had the need to license any of their products, but have instead only used them at work. If you are not the direct licensee of a product or the account administrator, i.e. you work for an organization that licenses Atlassian products, perhaps speak to the account administrator to see if they can file a bug or support request on your behalf.
I use Confluence with both JFW and VoiceOver. You're not alone.
There are enterprise-level support tickets in place for accessibility, but OF COURSE, no timeline on when these will be fixed. Sad to say, but unless scrum masters or product owners put accessibility remediation at the top of their radar, it's forever in the backlog.
Accessibility remediation is not necessary
Remember - employees at Atlassian don't have to put accessibility remediation at the top of any radar because there is a marketplace where third parties can do that and make great money from it as well, thus allowing Atlassian to increase their revenue in the process (by allowing these third parties to sell their plugins on the marketplace). This frees Atlassian up to focus on whatever they choose, while leaving accessibility to be well covered by third party vendors. If anyone on this site is expecting Atlassian to double down accessibility, you'll most likely be disappointed until either (1) they get rid of their marketplace, or (2) the current accessibility plugin vendors stop selling their products to Atlassian customers. Until one or both of those transpire, Atlassian has no incentive whatsoever to work on accessibility when there are current third party products available to handle it for them. Instead, they can work on core features and bug fixes that the majority of their customers will benefit from, and leave other features in the hands of any third party who wish to develop or work on them.
Benefit of the doubt
Well, that would be shocking discrimination if so.
I've been very frustrated with Atlassian for months, but I am going to give them the benefit of the doubt and assume that this accessibility statement is a relatively new thing edsigned to address problems such as those outstanding Enterprise issues and that they aren't deliberately trying to shirk their responsibilities and charge blind people a surcharge for using their products.
I tried to sign-up for the accessibility portal yesterday, but I never received the confirmation emails. I have emailed the email address so will see if it is actually being monitored or not.
I see there are some public backlogs on there too, so I'll maybe have a browse of that if I get some time.
This is probably the wrong way of thinking about it, but I don't really want my company to have to pay extra for me to do basic tasks in my job as it feels like it's putting me at an unfair disadvantage compared to everyone else. I know they have a legal responsibility, but then so do Atlassian.
I just hope that accessibility statement wasn't written 20 years ago and was just a passing fag.
While I am typically pretty cynical and agree with some of the comments above, Atlassian has hired a lot of industry superstars to work on a11y. Chckec LinkedIn.
Not all the Atlassian stuff is terrible
I think overall for my day to day use, Bitbucket is fine. If anything, th bitbucket pull request is quite impressive. I've not found another way to perform a diff in a meaningful way with. screen reader. And the new way to select reviewers is almost a massive time saver compared to the previous version, if it didn't keep erroring.
Jira's a bit hit and miss, but if I can keep away from the agile tools I can usually fudge my way along. The dropdown lists are a bit unpredictable though. Confluence feels like the most frustrating and difficult to use out of the three.
Some problems are likely to be browser related. I honestly don't think there is a good browser for VoiceOver on the Mac. Safari is probably the best, but it is so unbelievably annoying to use. Sometimes a simple thing like changing tab can involve a lot of messing about for no good reason, and it seems pretty slow and unwieldy, at least on my Intel Mac. As I mentioned above, Chrome has gone massively downhill recently and often gets stuck in loops where it can't progress past a sentence, or fails to read tables properly if they scroll off the bottom of the page, or countless other small but essential things. Firefox has always seemed like the runt of the litter, but I've not spent much time with it so maybe that's unfair.
I never got a reply back from my email last week, but I tried the accessibility portal again and this time received the email and was able to sign-up. The portal is a bit lightweight - I was able to submit a new issue quite easily, and there was a search that didn't do much.
I'm not going to hold my breath, but we'll see if anything happens.
Atlassian Accessibility Feedback
Although my personal email is subscribed here, I joined Atlassian two months ago as part of their accessibility efforts. I occasionally post here and am a screen reading user myself for those who don't know me.
With respect to feedback and raising accessibility issues, I did want to let readers here know that in addition to the support portal we have, accessibility issues can be raised via email to firstname.lastname@example.org. The support portal is at https://a11ysupport.atlassian.net/servicedesk/customer/portals.
With respect to the Confluence issues mentioned, I'm looking into these myself along with our QA team and will share any updates I have.
Thanks so much for replying in here, Kelly, and also the reply to my ticket.
Half the battle with problems like this seems to be connecting to the right person, or even knowing if that person exists at all.
I didn't think such a person existed at Atlassian, but hearing from you has made me feel a lot less despondant.
One Possible Way to Read Comments with VoiceOver
I'll preface what I'm saying here that I recognize this is far from ideal and that the entire experience is one I'll continue to investigate with the Confluence team at Atlassian. That said, in exploring this further, I have one possible solution for reading comments I'll share here.
1. I'm assuming you have located one of the comments either by reading through a Confluence page or by using something such as the Item Chooser to locate one of the inline comment start indications and then moving to some of the comment text. For new pages, I didn't use the Item Chooser because I was reading the comments as I encountered them. But for pages I'd previously read and wanted to locate just the commented text I found the Item Chooser faster.
2. Ensure the VO cursor is positioned on any of the commented text.
3. Use the Move Mouse Pointer to VO cursor command to move the mouse pointer to the commented text.
4. Use the Click Mouse command to click on the text. This will cause the comment itself to appear in a different area of the page.
5. There are a couple different ways to get to the comment. The one I have found to be the fastest is to use the Item Chooser, enter the word close, locate the close comment sidebar item, move to that and then start reading with VO. You will be able to read the comment and the various controls for taking action. You could also get to this area with heading navigation but it may be several headings depending on the nature of the page.
If you are going to be reviewing several comments, setting a web spot for the comment side bar and then using the VO command to find next Web Spot after clicking on any commented text is also another way to get to the comment itself for that text.
You can use the next and previous comment controls in this area to move from comment to comment. If you want to understand the text to which the comment belongs, you'll need to repeat this entire process of locating the commented text and then activating the comment.
Again I recognize this is far from ideal. In my trying of this solution, it has worked on pages with numerous comments so far. That is why I'm offering it as one immediate solution I've discovered while I continue to investigate and discuss.
I have managed to get this to work, thanks very much, Kelly.
One thing that threw me to start with is that I had the help pane open which seems to break it. I had vaguely come across some help text on the page but hadn't put two and two together until it was pointed out to me. So in that case, item chooser, type in 'close' and select the lat one in the list and hopefully that sorts it.
I was reading last night that Atlassian were laying off something like 5% of their staff.
@Kelly - I suspect you might not be able to answer, but do you know if this is going to affect the work with accessibility at all? Usually this seems to be the first casualty of lay-offs but I really hope that isn't the case, both for your sake and also for ours.
If anyone uses Jira for work then would really like some training one on one
We use Jira at work.
Work is also going to be replacing zendesk with jira support desk or something.
I am fortunate enough to have both a Mac and Windows machine at work and we use Jira everyday. Some things work better on one platform than the other. I'm afraid that I don't have much free time to work with you individually.
I use the TAB key quite a bit and there seems to be a good amount of headings. The item chooser comes in handy as well.
Check out this blog and I think there is another entry there as well.
I use Jira but I can't say I'm an expert at it. I tend to use the very basic functions - search, go to recent work and editing a ticket. I've never been able to get the agile tools to work. Chrome has real trouble with tables on the Mac these days as well which doesn't help.
The question mark shortcut works in Jira too which will give you keyboard shortcuts. I mostly use D to change the status of a ticket and have already forgotten all the others. You can use jump to heading on a ticket, which oddly goes from one field to another. I also navigate to table a lot, as well as using VO+F to jump around. (I tend to use that instead of item chooser but that's just a personal preference)
It's possible to setup your own queries, so I've created one which I can use instead of looking at the sprint view, although I usually know what tickets I'm working on and just search for them instead.
I think Jira can change a lot depending on the configuration. For example, the Atlassian accessibility portal uses Jira I think and it has a lot of differences to what I use. I think there may even be different products called Jira, so I would find out exactly which one you are going to be using.
If your company is considering moving to it, they are likely to have been messing around with it. Would they give you access to their pilot site so you can have a mess about with it?
I tend to use Chrome even though it doesn't work that well, and will bail out to Safari if I get stuck. There is also a Jira iPhone app which I've used a couple of times when I've been very desperate. But I've not had such issues recently. But I'm hardly a power user.
I'm not sure I'm really competent enough to give training as I tend to just muddle by. Do you think you could get a look at what you'll be using?