A large volume of media is shared on Twitter daily. It may not come close to rivaling Facebook in terms of images shared but images are nevertheless a very popular way of sharing content. Twitter expanded its image sharing capabilities by allowing users to share up to four images at once and even letting them search for and add GIFs to a tweet from inside the mobile apps. The latest improvement made for image sharing on the platform is the ability to add alt text to an image when it’s tweeted. The feature is meant to help users with visual impairments make sense of images they come across in their timelines. Of course, people have to add an ALT text to an image in order for anyone with an impairment to take advantage of it. Here’s how you can enable and use the feature.
Before you can start adding the ALT text, you have to enable this feature. It is for smartphones only at present. Go to the Me tab and tap the Settings button. In the action menu, tap Settings and go to Display & Sound. Inside the Accessibility option, turn on ‘Compose image descriptions’.
Now you’re ready to add ALT text to an image you’re tweeting. Compose a tweet and add an image to it. There will be an ‘Add description’ button on the image you add. Tap it and you can enter a description of the image up to 420 characters long. Once you’ve added the description, tap tweet and you’re done.
In order to ‘see’ the alt text, a user must have accessibility features on their phone turned on as that is what will read the text out loud to them and/or give them an option to read it.