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Add Descriptive Text to Images

Alternative text

Alternative text provides a textual alternative to non-text content in web pages and PDFs. Screen readers cannot analyze an image and determine what the image presents.

Alternative text serves several functions:

  • It is read by screen readers in place of images allowing the content and function of the image to be accessible to all.
  • It is displayed in place of the image in browsers if the image file is not loaded or when the user has chosen not to view images.
  • It provides a description to the Image which can be read by search engines.

Open the Touch up Reading Order Tool; Highlight the image; choose Figure; right click the image and Edit Alternate Text by adding descriptive text.

declare an image in Adobe Acrobat

edit alternative text

Every image must have an alternate information. Images without an attribute are inaccessible.

Decorative Image

If the image is purely decorative it can be declared background. 

Open the Touch up Reading Order Tool. Highlight the decorative image and select Background.

Declare an image as background in a PDF

Contact Information

Web Services Team
Information Systems Department
County of Sonoma
2615 Paulin Drive
Santa Rosa, CA 95403
38.466385, -122.722706

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Administrative Policy Manual, 9-1

Website Accessibility Policy
Administrative Policy Manual, 9-3

Accessibility Resources

Web Accessibility
Introduction to Web Accessibility

Converting Documents to PDF's

Creating Accessible Word Documents

PowerPoint Accessibility

Regulatory Compliance Resources