I have encountered more image descriptions on Mastodon in 24 hours than I have in Twitter in a couple of years. Seriously. I'm not exaggerating.
As a blind person, this means a lot to me. If you read this and you describe your images, thank you so, so, so much on behalf of all of us. If you don't, now you know you'll be helping random Internet strangers make sense of your posts by typing in a few more words than usual.



Actually I don't put description on the images I toot there, usually because they're just funny ones and it stops being funny if it has to be described/explained so the extra work seems pointless to me.

Would you consider that acceptable ? When do you believe it is important to describe images ?

@lienrag It is not acceptable to not describe images of jokes. It excludes people.

This is a general problem: Abled people don't expect disabled people to participate in jokes and memes and shitposts, but we do. We don't want to be excluded from fun stuff our friends/peers are doing.

It doesn't ruin the joke to explain it; anyone who doesn't need/want to look at the description won't.

But even if it did, people matter more than jokes.

@KAOS @shahaan @bright_helpings @guilevi

So, everytime you post a joke you take the time to translate it to Chinese, Arabic, Russian,.... in order to be sure to include everyone ?

@shahaan @bright_helpings @lienrag @guilevi @KAOS As far as I know Chinese, Arabic and Russian aren't disabilities and as such it is a very poor taste comparison.
@hypolite @lienrag It's also worth noting that online translation services exist and are somewhat decent. There's a reason we use photos in captchas.
@hypolite @guilevi @shahaan @bright_helpings @lienrag @KAOS This sounds like a moral lecture from someone who has run out of arguments. As we all know, there are jokes that do not translate well, if at all, into other languages. There is a word joke and also a "picture joke" - even if this term is not familiar. Musicians entertain themselves with funny melodies - which I don't even begin to understand. I would never think of accusing them of excluding me. To accuse someone of excluding others because their messages are not universally transferable is nonsensical and would ultimately lead to an impoverishment of all cultures.

That said, I would like to see alt-text added to images that are difficult to describe. Even at the risk of the joke not being understood.
@ilanti Are you seriously suggesting that me calling someone out for equating disability with non-Latin scripts sounds like I'm running out of arguments?

I hope you ran your comment by one of your many visually-impaired friends because otherwise it would sound pretty fucking privileged.
@hypolite @Hypolite Petovan What I'm saying is that you don't make arguments, but moralise and judge: "your jokes aren't that funny", "your comparisons show bad taste", "your comments sound privileged" are, at least in my understanding, not arguments, but rather speeches of a priest or a governess. I have no problem with priests and governesses - they are honourable professions - but I am surprised to find them in this discussion, and this after you have accused others of having no arguments. Does that really fit together?

But maybe we have a misunderstanding of language or culture here. Because in the end we come to the same conclusion that alt-texts are helpful even for "funny pictures".

Perhaps I should clarify what an argument is in my sense:

just remember that just because a joke loses all its fun to you if it is explained, that does not mean others will all feel the same. We've gotten used to finding descriptions of visual jokes sufficiently amusing;
(copied from the above comment by @Mayana)

And here we see clearly what are the advantaged of an argument: it picks up the discussant, addresses his arguments and enables him to change his point of view. Telling him that his jokes are not funny will not achieve that.
@ilanti I do moralize and judge because it is a very moral issue, there's no logical point to make here. When somebody say "Please add image descriptions so that visually-impaired people can also enjoy your funny pictures" and someone is essentially like "Nah", you know there's no logical argument that will get through them, they purposefully chose to publicly exclude disabled people, which is an extremely (im)moral position.

Word to the wise, next time you actually agree with someone, please don't comment on their tone publicly. You don't have to like it, but it won't do anyone any favor to comment on it.
@hypolite @Hypolite Petovan It's not about tone. Your message and the one I quoted send completely different messages:

Your pictures may be not that funny if you can't describe them


Please consider describing them anyway, because blind people may have a different perspective than you have.

Even without the "please", the second message would be more substantial, more communicative and less arogant than the first.

It is now up to you to decide how you want to communicate further. For my part, I would like you to refrain from unsolicited "wise advice", for example.
@ilanti And now you can go fuck yourself.

You apparently haven’t picking on the subtle hint I wasn’t interested talking about this with you anymore, but this should clear any lingering misunderstanding.
@hypolite Interesting ... that a person who presents himself as so morally superior is so quick to fly into a rage.

@hypolite @shahaan @bright_helpings @lienrag @guilevi @KAOS

I'm just going to go ahead and block them because I can spot a concern troll at over 50,000 metres.

I post descriptions on my memes because the idea of people not getting my joke makes me sad.

Oh, and to answer the point. I'll post in the language of my audience. And usually that's English.

This isn't neccesary. There are translators like DeepL and Google Translator, which can translate pretty accurately.
@KAOS @shahaan @bright_helpings @guilevi

@lienrag daaaamn this thread is so old, how have you not grown as a person in the 17+ months since May 11th 2021 lmao

@lienrag @KAOS @shahaan @bright_helpings @guilevi They can run the text in the image description through translate. If you don't bother describing the image at all then they don't have that option, and you've excluded a whole bunch of people that you could have included with just the tiniest bit of effort.

And image descriptions can be really funny in their own right and add to the joke, if you do them well

@lienrag @KAOS @shahaan @bright_helpings @guilevi

Nyt meni vänkäämiseksi.

Saavutettavuus kaikille on täällä perusperiaate. Näitä kaikkia ryhmiä on niin monia, että jokaisen tarpeita ei aina voi erikseen miettiä.

Yhteisönormit, kuten Alt-Teksti, on tältä pohjalta kehittyneet vuosien aikana.

Näitä normeja ei tarvitse erikseen selittää ja perustella. Ne voi hyväksyä vaikka niitä kaikkia ei ymmärräkään.

@lienrag Browser translator can handle translate text but not images.

@feld Holy shit dude, I may be partially sighted but that's more than enough for me to see that you're fully an asshole.

@bright_helpings @feld i don't think calling people assholes is a great way to promote positivity on the fedi. other than tone, i agree with you. but tone is also important so as to not hurt feelings and trigger people's defense mechanisms

I didn't even see his reply until now but the point is that trying to tell *the entire internet* what is "acceptable" content because of being partially sighted is as ridiculous as me trying to tell every chef/restaurant in the world what is "acceptable" food to be served to the masses because I have IBS

being accommodating of others' needs is a very nice thing to do, but it's impractical to enforce and getting hostile about it is not going to win the hearts and minds of your audience

@bright_helpings @lienrag @guilevi I second this. The image description is optional and as a sighted person I can simply choose not to view it. It's an opt-in system.

For sighted readers, isn't the caption only visible if you hover over/click on the image? And I think an image description often wouldn't have to explain the joke.

@omni @lienrag @guilevi

That appears to be true for the default settings, but I turned off automatic loading of images on my first day here, so I too see the image descriptions at first. Yes, that means I have to click on each image to see them, but it also means that nobody who's peeking over my shoulder sees NSFW images when I open the federated timeline.

(Spending time with family this week; a lot of people around all over the house).

@lienrag Sighted people will see the image without the description. We have to go out of our way to see the description, by hovering over the image. So the people you'd be describing it for are people who either can't see the image in the first place, or people know that image descriptions exist and are curious to see if you've put anything there.
@lienrag @guilevi If images are funny but stop being funny when you describe them without having to explain, then they probably weren't that funny in the first place.
@lienrag @guilevi You didn't provide much of a counter-argument, but I will elaborate. It isn't that funny because of the over-reliance on the visual aspect, making it less universal. It's like stereoscopic images, it's only fun for people who can see the hidden image (I personally can't) so they aren't universally entertaining.

Of course the images you share will be fun to you, but they aren't that funny in general if only you and a specific subset of people can physically enjoy them.

J’ai l’impression que la discussion a peu déraillé...
#CommunicationLostInSocialNetworks ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Pour la peine, voilà de l’humour
#alsacien traduisible mais mal traduit, présenté par un jeune animateur. Dis-moi si c’est drôle pour un non dialectophone ou pas du tout.

Jacques Martin : l'humour alsacien : « Quand on comprend, c’est merveilleux ! »


#Humour #HumourAlsacien

@lienrag here's a guide on when it's acceptable to caption / not caption images for visually impaired


Thanks !
I'd say, it's acceptable to not captions images for visually impaired mostly in the same situations where it's acceptable to not translate your toot into Chinese, Somali, Arabic (and so on) for the people who do not read English ?


So, not that's it not a good thing to do when possible, but I fail to see how it can be a requirement in one situation when it is apparently not in the other ?

@lienrag there is no requirement that you do anything specific in your dealings with others, but why not take an extra five seconds to do it when people are specifically asking for it?

Good question.
I try to do it when I think of it and when it actually takes five seconds.
A good way to improve the situation is the bar that appears above (or below ?) the toot in glitch-social (I think ? It's been a while), when I see it it reminds me that it's useful and I usually try to caption the image then.

@lienrag @dantescanline a description must always be present with picture even if it seams redondant. You post a picture, you describe the picture. It's all that simple. Even if you think it is not funny to do so.

@lienrag @guilevi

inclusion is always important. Humor is cool and all that, but is not making a small bit of skippable text that might cut that glow a little short not worth removing that cutting sting of people not caring whether or not you are included at all?

Who cares if it "ruins the joke" you know what ruins it harder? Knowing that other people are being excluded

@lienrag The image description can just as much be a punchline as the image itself. There are a couple of ways to describe meme/joke images that I've encountered.
Sometimes common memes will have recognizable names like "grumpy cat" which may not need a description or are self-explanatory.

@lienrag Other times a meme can be explained like "multiple people dressed as spider-man point at each other. They're labeled pi, 22/7, 333/106, and 3.1415926... where the last one has multiple overlapping copies of the spider-man repeating so it looks like a long snake that extends out of frame."

@lienrag You might find that sometimes you want to describe the intent of the meme more ("Look at all the fucks I give, says Maria in sound of music, arms wide") or sometimes you may want to explain the visual primarily ("Dog wearing lab goggles looks dopey surrounded by lab equipment accompanied by the text: I have no idea what I'm doing").
If there's a specific meme you need help captioning, maybe you can link or share and get some support.

@lienrag @guilevi Lien, good to see you ask this question. Most people don't understand the need for descriptions which is why they are not common elsewhere. Descriptions make content accessible to more peoole and you a nice person.
PS: Comparing language and disability is baseless because you could learn a new language or use a translator.

@lienrag @guilevi if you can’t see it, then it’s not funny at all.
Practice telling it as a joke. Do something! Because by not captioning you get no laugh at all.

@lienrag @guilevi read this post by Paul Ford, it might help you understand that a textual description of a funny picture can also be hecking funny. Also consider the alt text on xkcd comics. If you like humour you can try. tilde.zone/@ftrain/10931407171

@lienrag @guilevi
I don't think it will ruin the joke in my browser I only see the description if I tap the alt button maybe it's different in other apps or browsers

@lienrag Describing the joke image in ALT text opens up new avenues in humor. You can makes it way funnier than it was with very little effort.

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