Whilst it might be tempting to rethink the global economic paradigm, this would indeed be an audacious #equality goal. The number 1 on my list refers instead to lettering, and two things in particular. One instance where you need to use more capitals, and one where you need to use less:
1. Use more capitals – capitalise each word in hashtags. This is also known as camelback hashtags and is the difference between #diversityandinclusion and #DiversityAndInclusion . Capitalising the words makes it easier for screen readers for those who find it hard to read visual text. Capitalising also makes it easier for people with dyslexia or cognitive disabilities because we are taught to recognise words that have certain shapes and clear beginnings and ends, which isn’t the case in hashtags that run several words together.
2. Related to this, there are so many places where people spell out the whole word in capitals. If you look at the work “CHANGE” compared to “change”it is much harder to guess the word from the capitalised version because the shape is much more uniform. Also, in capitals, CHANCE and CHANGE look similar, whereas chance and change are a bit more distinctive. Again, people with dyslexia or word recognition challenges will find these much more difficult to read because we expect words to have a certain shape to them, but to be honest, I realised writing this that I use the shape of words to guess what they are more often than I realise, especially if reading from a distance or in poor light.
So, my first tip for being more consciously inclusive in 2022 is to make sure that you use accessible fonts (and make sure the contrast with the background is good too). Text is likely a way that you communicate with many different audiences, so being consciously inclusive here is a good habit to get in to.
Growing inclusive mindsets and inclusive organisations doesn’t happen by magic. It requires deliberate action. There are lots of possible actions whether you want to start with yourself, your team as individuals or your organisation. “22 ways to be consciously inclusive in 2022” is a series of blog posts with that aim in mind.