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thoughts on image descriptions 

- some people need them to get any value out of your image

- some people find them extremely helpful to provide context for the subject/content/point you're making

- it's an opportunity to be creative, you can have fun with them while also being informative

- there's been an odd exception, but in general i don't boost images without descriptions, and i know i'm not the only person with that policy

in summation: use image descriptions

if you have trouble remembering to do this (i had that problem a couple of years ago) then you can follow a bot that will follow you back and remind you to caption if you post an image without a description

this is just one example, i think there are more:
@PleaseCaption

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@kiki thanks for the bot and this reminder!

Now I'll put more attention and try to caption as much as I can.

@jae no problem at all, very happy to have helped :blobsmile:

@kiki I like to caption mine with #haiku without trivializing the need some people have for descriptions. Also there is a certain discipline in good concise descriptions, so I derive a certain satisfaction from it.

These are motivators for me.

@kiki @PleaseCaption yes! I used to have trouble at start too. I think the bot I used back then died. :c But at least there's another.

thoughts on image descriptions 

@kiki As someone who has perfectly fine vision, I still sometimes am Not Sure What I'm Looking At and honestly? The experience of just like. hovering to check the alt text... rather than being confused, is so much better.

IMHO if an image was worth posting, it's worth describing quickly, and it's not just for "some" people's benefit

thoughts on image descriptions 

@masklayer yup agreed, i'd be of the view that the descriptions are for everyone

of course there are some people who absolutely need them, so it's important to make sure that's at the core of it

thoughts on image descriptions 

@masklayer @kiki it's wonderful, especially with pop culture memes I'm unfamiliar with, it gives me text to open a new window and search for, in order to appreciate what's being posted

other times I just lack the ability to see what's special about something, like I can only see two grumpy people, whereas to a more nt person they can pick up what they're grumpy about

thoughts on image descriptions 

@kiki
In the browser I use (vivaldi) I can enter a description for an image, but after sending the toot this discription does not appear.

I had asked here in this community some time ago, but only answer I got was that it depends on the engine a browser uses and that I should use firefox browser (which I do not want to).

So only solution for me is to add the image description directly in my toot which reduces the number of characters left for the respective toot

re: thoughts on image descriptions 

@Urmeline @kiki uh, does vivaldi not display the title attribute on images? that's how image descriptions are displayed when you hover over them, and it's a standard thing that browsers have supported for decades?? internet explorer handled that correctly :blobcattilt:

re: thoughts on image descriptions 

@00dani @kiki
In vivaldi, I can enter an image description when uploading an image.

There is no error message or similar thing..

But after having sent my post, this description I added does not appear when novering over the image.

The image description I added using Vivaldi does neither appear in Vivaldi, nor in other browsers then. I tested with Opera, Chrome, Chromium and Firefox

thoughts on image descriptions 

@Urmeline that's a pain alright, but a good solution i think

i guess the only problem might be if someone only sees the original post and doesn't realise there's a description a subsequent post

thoughts on image descriptions 

@kiki
No, I do not add a subsequent post for the image descriptions, I put them directly into my original post, which reduces the number of characters left for the post, of course.

thoughts on image descriptions 

@Urmeline ah i see, apologies for the misunderstanding

thoughts on image descriptions 

@kiki
No problem at all!

I think my explanations might have been in some aspects misleading and not precisely enough.

Everything is ok and I enjoy discussing with you!

thoughts on image descriptions 

@Urmeline no worries! 😊 i wish i knew anything about the technical aspects of things so i could offer some help on how to make the descriptions functions in your browser - hopefully you will be able to find a solution 🤞

thoughts on image descriptions 

@kiki
Thank you very much!

Maybe ... just an idea .... maybe it would help those using screenreaders and thus relying on image descriptions to know WHY some users do not add image descriptions.

So how about realizing a poll / survey about reasons for not adding image descriptions?

Maybe the results will be helpful...

thoughts on image descriptions 

@kiki
I post about nature and agriculture, so I always describe my pics, because I'm sure most folks on here wouldn't recognize a fava bean plant or a tomato seedling if they tripped over it 🙂
For me, it's very nice when folks tell me what machinery is in their pics, because that's not my area of expertise 😎

re: thoughts on image descriptions 

@kiki I'm gonna kindly disagree with you here and say describe other ppl's images. :p

if everyone did this, boosting images without descriptions would be fine, because they'd get descriptions soon. this is mutual aid.

re: thoughts on image descriptions 

@SoniEx2 i see your point alright, but i feel like the responsibility should still be on the original poster to describe their own images

i often wouldn't feel comfortable jumping in to describe someone else's post, plus another person just looking at the post on the timeline may not be aware that a description follows in the replies

it is a good alternative way of dealing with it, but not necessarily a complete solution

re: thoughts on image descriptions 

@kiki at the same time, we have to understand that not everyone can describe their own images. going from images to words (or vice-versa) can often be hard for ppl, and that's what I want to optimize for.

re: thoughts on image descriptions 

@SoniEx2 yup that's fair - i'm not sure what the best solution is in that case tbh, it's hard to know the difference between people who can't add descriptions vs those who can but just won't, and it definitely would be good to find a way of helping the former

re: thoughts on image descriptions 

@kiki at the end of the day, does it matter? I mean... honestly, to me that feels like the same old "but it'll make ppl lazy" ableist argument that ppl use as an excuse to deny/invalidate access needs and accommodations.

if we wanna do better, we need a change of culture. check replies for image descriptions. describe images for ppl. write your own descriptions if you can - I see ppl write them in separate posts sometimes for character count reasons, so the previous advice of checking replies is good.

re: thoughts on image descriptions 

@SoniEx2 i don't know, my view of image descriptions is that they are about providing accessibility

for people who need them, i feel like it's best to find a way to make them accessible without it being necessary to go searching for them in the replies or elsewhere

i understand it's not a simple matter for everyone to add descriptions, but at the same time there are a lot of people who just choose not to and that culture definitely needs to change

re: thoughts on image descriptions 

@kiki I feel like encouraging ppl to describe other ppl's images is the best way to encourage them to describe their own tbh.

re: thoughts on image descriptions 

@SoniEx2 i don't see how it's possible to encourage someone who doesn't see the value of captioning their own images to do it for others

maybe i'm wrong, but it just seems like it would be better to first help them first see the benefit of captioning their own and making that a norm

like yeah, absolutely encourage people to describe images for others who can't, just people who aren't doing it at all still won't do that imo

re: thoughts on image descriptions 

@kiki hm.

I guess this is the part where I don't know.

I figure captioning other ppl's images will encourage them to do the same, because they'll see it actively being done. they'll feel like it's part of the culture here. some will take advantage of it but I'm not too worried about that tbh.

but, honestly, I don't know.

re: thoughts on image descriptions 

@SoniEx2 tbh you've convinced me to start captioning other people's images if they haven't added their own description and i want to boost it, where previously i would just favourite and not boost

normalising both approaches can only really be a good thing in the end i think

thoughts on image descriptions 

@kiki it's fun to do them actually. I like to crack wise in them sometimes. It's a little easter egg for people that use screen readers or actually read the descriptions

thoughts on image descriptions 

@Thomas same! i pretty much always check descriptions anyway, and i always appreciate when there are little extras

thoughts on image descriptions 

@kiki i'd like to add this point in favour:
- it's also an opportunity to be uncreative. don't have to wreck your brain trying to come up with something clever or funny, you can just type up what's already in the image

thoughts on image descriptions 

@eel absolutely, style is all a matter of preference - most important thing is to help others understand what's presented, how a person chooses to do that is up to them

thoughts on image descriptions 

@kiki Some instances may do this but I think it should straight up be a requirement to put in an image description before you're allowed to send the toot. If the field is null the toot button is greyed out. Sure, some people might put in junk but at that point they're deliberately being an asshole instead of merely forgetful or unaware.

thoughts on image descriptions 

@firescotch there's definitely a case for making it mandatory, personally i wouldn't have any issues with it, but i know there's some who would - but i suppose if it were an instance policy then those users could take it up with their mods and talk it through in a reasonable fashion

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