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Remember Southwest Airlines?

From: Joe Clark <joeclark@joeclark.org>
Date: Mon, 19 May 2003 18:18:52 -0400 (EDT)
To: WAI-IG <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Message-ID: <Pine.BSO.4.40.0305191817380.20078-100000@ns1.seeto.com>

Well, after winning an ADA complaint about the inaccessibility of
their Web site, Southwest Airlines is suddenly promoting the changes
it has made to improve accessibility:

X-URL:
    http://www.prnewswire.com/cgi-bin/stories.pl?ACCT=SVBIZINK3.story&STORY=/www
    /story/05-12-2003/0001944827&EDATE=MON+May+12+2003,+05:48+PM

   Southwest Airlines Selects Deque System's RAMP Software and Services
   For Implementing Web Accessibility

     Comprehensive Software Solutions from Deque to Improve Accessibility
                       For Southwest Airlines Web Sites

    FAIRFAX, Va., May 12 /PRNewswire/ -- Deque Systems, an end-to-end
accessibility solutions provider, announced today that Southwest Airlines
(NYSE: [42]LUV) will use its evaluation and repair tool RAMP(TM), Robust
Accessibility Management and Production, to improve web site accessibility for
their blind and low vision customers.  Deque is able to offer software
products and also a full breadth of services to organizations in need of an
accessibility process that is repeatable and measurable.
    Deque specializes in making an organization's web content accessible to
people with disabilities.  Although not yet required to by law, commercial
companies are beginning to notice the value of providing accessible technology
to meet the needs of a diverse set of people.  With forward-thinking, well-run
companies like Southwest Airlines making the commitment to making its online
information accessible, removing the barriers to the World Wide Web is sure to
become as prevalent as the ramps that exist for physical spaces today.
    "Southwest Airlines values the importance of an accessible web site and
has committed to provide one to their customers," says Cheryl Holmes, Vice
President of Sales & Marketing at Deque Systems.  "Southwest also understands
this is an ongoing commitment and vigorously examined the many avenues and
solutions before choosing Deque."
    "Southwest prides itself on the simplicity and ease of southwest.com, and
this product will enable us to provide affordable air travel to customers who
need assistive technology to navigate the World Wide Web," said Kevin Krone,
Southwest's Vice President of Interactive Marketing.  "We will be working with
Deque to develop and implement this solution."
    "We are very proud that Southwest Airlines has partnered with Deque to
enhance the accessibility of its web site and recognizes our role as a leading
player in providing Web Accessibility Solutions," added Preety Kumar, Chief
Technical Officer of Deque.  "It is a perfect example of our capability to
provide an integrated product and services solution to accelerate our
customer's delivery of an accessible web presence."
    Southwest elected to receive on-site training to efficiently use the key
strengths provided by RAMP(TM).  This will enable Southwest developers to gain
the knowledge necessary to develop and maintain an accessible web site.
Recognizing that functional testing is an essential step, Southwest Airlines
will rely on the Deque Assistive Technology Lab for testing with the Screen
Readers and other Assistive Technology on the market today.
    "Southwest's commitment became quite evident to me during my functional
review of their site.  It also became clear that they would benefit from our
expertise in ensuring its site was coded for accessibility," said Senior
Accessibility Engineer with Deque, Sailesh Panchang who lost his sight ten
years ago.  "A core value of the American society is independence.
Information technology accessible using my Screen Reader is what allows me to
be independent. I will be able to make reservations online myself, which may
not seem to be a big deal, but it truly improves my quality of life."

    About Deque Systems -- Deque Systems, Inc is a pioneer in the field of
information accessibility.  Deque's software solution, RAMP(TM), with its
unparalleled product depth, automates analysis and remediation of Section 508
rules and W3C Web Accessibility Initiative's Web Content Accessibility
Guidelines, and provides efficiencies of over 95% as compared to a manual
effort.  In addition, RAMP(TM) is written in Java for platform independence
and is also accessible to people with disabilities. [43]http://www.deque.com

    About Southwest Airlines (NYSE: [44]LUV) -- In 2002, the Jupiter Media Metr
ix
named Southwest the airline that best utilizes the Internet and provides brand
synergy between its main line and online presence.  According to Jupiter
Airline CORE (Composite Rating of Online Effectiveness) Index, Southwest
Airlines ranks among the top companies in online sales performance.  The
Online Sales Index is based on self-reported ticket sales data, and represents
the percentage of tickets sold from a specific airline's web site for 2001.
The award embodies those U.S. airline carriers that best leverage the assets
of the Internet to boost business and paramount in moving their Customers to
the online channel.


      News Headlines from:
   PR Newswire - United Business Media
   [INLINE]
   ______________________________________________________________________

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Received on Monday, 19 May 2003 18:20:29 GMT

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