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NewFormat AB

NewFormat make PDF information permanently
accessible, searchable, readable and reusable
for the future and for as many people as possible.

We create accessible PDF in compliance with the ISO Standard PDF/UA.

Our solutions are based on
recognized ISO Standards based on PDF technology
and tested, reliable, and highly accessible software solutions from
the PDF Association vendor community.

Accessibility - Icon

Accessible PDF

Portable Document Format - PDF

PDF - Icon

    All digital information that is worth saving and shared with others
    is saved in the form of a PDF document.

    PDF is the format of choice for every kind of document used in all
    industries, government and by all citizens.
    PDF is trusted by everyone to reliably communicate accurate information.

    Every year billions of PDF documents are created around the world.
    In the Swedish public sector alone, many millions of PDF documents
    are created every year; whereof a large part of these documents
    are published on government websites.

    To most end users, PDF is simply a reliable, printable page.
    Informed users know that PDF performs as a critical workflow enabler,
    a multipurpose content vehicle and a powerful and globally supported
    format for long-term archiving.

    PDF technology goes far beyond the format:
    PDF enables digital document solutions on every continent,
    in every language, in every business and public sectors worldwide.
    From scanned pages to input for print and publishing processes,
    ISO-standardized PDF technology is indispensable across a
    vast range of document applications.

Accessible PDF

PDF/UA - Icon

    Accessible PDF (PDF/UA) is a prerequisite for accessible eGovernment.

    Barrier-free and accessible PDF documents can be consumed by all users
    without restriction, regardless of their personal restrictions.

    Successful e-government presupposes that all digital government information
    is accessible for all citizens - the success is dependent on "Accessible PDF".

    To ensure unrestricted access to PDF-based information in every respect,
    PDF files must meet certain requirements.

    These requirements are since 2012 defined in
    The ISO Standard 14289-1 for "universally accessible PDF"
    (also known as PDF/UA).

    PDF/UA defines the technical requirements that must be considered
    when a PDF document must be universally accessible for everyone;
    with or without disabilities.

    The standard specifies how relevant PDF content
    (such as semantic content, text content, images,
    form fields, comments, bookmarks, and metadata)
    may be used in PDF/UA-compliant documents.

    Properly tagged PDFs are essential and a prerequisite
    for accessibility so that screen reader devices for
    visually impaired people or reading software for
    users with learning disabilities can provide
    rich access to a PDF’s content.

    PDF tags are also an effective method to improve
    Search Engine Optimization (SEO).

    Even automated text extraction from PDF documents
    is easier with well-tagged documents.

    PDF documents complying with PDF/UA are universally accessible for everyone.

    The aim of a barrier-free PDF document is to ensure that all users
    have equal access to the content without the help of others.

    Barrier-free access to PDF-based content is all about universal design;
    i.e. accessibility through design.

    In order to create a document that is as accessible as possible to everyone,
    you need to focus on all potential user groups and their needs.

    You should never succumb to the temptation to optimize a
    PDF document for a specific user group.
    The consequence of this could be that such a document is then
    very readily consumable for this one group of users,
    but may be more disadvantageous than beneficial for others.

    How well a PDF document is "accessible for everyone"
    depends on how the document is created.
    The level of accessibility according to current accessibility standards
    is determined by both the execution of the editorial content of
    the document AND of its internal technical structure.
    Often, this insight is neglected by many, which can lead to significant
    problems when it comes to fixing inaccessible documents.

    The Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0/2.1 (WCAG 2.0/2.1)
    are the internationally recognized guidelines for accessible web offers.
    Many national or supranational regulations (eg at EU level)
    on the accessibility of web sites refer to WCAG 2.0/2.1.

    It is definitely best to first conduct an editorial accessibility check of the content.
    Because if the document does not meet the necessary editorial accessibility
    requirements, it is not possible to implement the requirements in WCAG 2.0/2.1
    without changing the content.

    Electronic documents provided for download on a web site are also covered by
    WCAG 2.0/2.1 per se and must meet the applicable success criteria to comply
    with WCAG 2.0/2.1 (Level A, AA or AAA).
    Not all PDF/UA accessible PDF documents comply with WCAG 2.0/2.1.

    Note! For the technical implementation of accessible PDF,
    use of the ISO Standard PDF/UA is recommended;
    a PDF file can be compliant both with WCAG and PDF/UA.

    Successful barrier-free access to content within PDF documents depends not just
    on PDF/UA compliant documents, but also on requirements for PDF/UA compliant
    programs and assistive technology:

    • a PDF/UA compliant document (according to standards and guidelines),

    • a PDF/UA compliant display or processing program,

    • a PDF/UA compliant assistive technology.

    Please be aware,
    it is not the assistive technologies that define what an accessible PDF is,
    but the common document standards and guidelines.
    Never adapt your documents to a specific assistive technology.
    All you have to do is to create ONE version of a PDF/UA compliant document,
    and the manufacturers of the relevant programs and assistive technologies
    are responsible for complying with the regulations.
    It is also not necessary to check your end result for correctness
    using such technologies or techniques.

    (See also our solutions and services for Accessible Web - W3C/WCAG 2.1)

Who should use PDF/UA for Accessible PDF, and when?

PDF/UA - Icon

    PDF/UA is relevant and directly applicable for all entities,
    in public sector and elsewhere, concerned with conformance
    to regulations requiring access for everyone to
    documents based on PDF technology

    Also entities serving the public sector, like media service providers,
    advertising/communication agencies, banks, insurances agencies,
    and representatives of associations and institutions as well as students and
    lecturers at colleges and universities increasingly consider it their duty to
    have their written materials available as accessible documents.

    Avoid litigation risks by ensuring that all PDF documents on your
    web are accessible for everyone; with or without disabilities.

    To quickly make accessible PDF by pressing a few buttons
    in a program does not usually lead to a successful final result.
    You need a certain amount of basic knowledge.
    The extent of this knowledge depends largely on the nature of
    your documents and content.

    Are you sure that your business internally has the skills and the right tools
    to create PDF documents that are guaranteed to meet the PDF/UA Standard?

    If not,
    hire NewFormat to provide Accessible PDF as a Service.
    Accessible PDF as a Service is for anyone who does not have the
    opportunity to create accessible PDF files on their own,
    but who nevertheless want PDF documents to comply with
    accessibility regulations and standards.


    Contact NewFormat, we will guide you to the right tools and services for your business

Accessible PDF
Requires Compliance with the ISO Standard PDF/UA

PDF/UA - Icon

    Compliance with PDF/UA is important for digital accessibility for everyone.

    Barriers that prevent interaction with, or access to a document or website
    by people with disabilities can be considered discrimination.

    Legal requirements for accessibility to digital information for everyone in the society
    (e.g. the EU Web Accessibility Directive, the Swedish Act on Access to
    Digital Public Services, the Swedish Discrimination Act, the German BGG, BITV and
    EU mandate 376) ensures that all users, regardless of functional ability, have equal
    access to information and functionality on the web and in PDF documents.

    Successful e-government presupposes that all digital government information
    is accessible for all citizens - the success is dependent on "Accessible PDF".

    Accessible PDF files are fundamental for barrier-free access to digital information
    from eGovernments/public administrations and enterprises serving the public sector.

    Documents, especially PDF files, can be a significant liability
    even if you have fixed the HTML content.
    Avoid litigation risks by ensuring that all PDF documents on your
    web are accessible for everyone; with or without disabilities.

PDF/UA - Icon

Recommended Reading on PDF/UA
The ISO Standard for Accessible PDF Documents and Forms

PDF/UA in a Nutshell - Front Cover - Picture     PDF/UA Flyer Front Cover - Picture

(For download of these guides, click on the pictures above)

Lifebuoy - Picture

    Do you need help to create accessible PDF in compliance with PDF/UA?

    NewFormat help businesses to locate, map and analyze existing
    document resources as input for decision on needed actions to
    achieve full compliance with accessibility standards.

    To prepare of a few or limited number of PDF documents for universal accessibility
    can be daunting task, although possible to accomplish.

    But, what do you do if you are responsible for thousands of PDFs?
    You may not necessarily know where they all are, or you may not have
    the time and resources to check your files one at a time.

    With vast numbers of enterprise PDF documents stored on websites,
    networks, and computers, organizations are challenged with keeping tabs
    on accessibility standards compliance.

    Should you prepare the files on your own using a software tool,
    or should you hire an external resource to prepare the files as a service?

    We provide tools for creation, checking/validation and remediation,
    services and training, to make your PDF documents truly accessible
    for everyone according to the ISO Standard PDF/UA.

    Our services can regularly scan and crawl websites, internal networks,
    file systems, folders, files,... to locate existing document issues and
    compile an issue-report based on the findings.
    The status reports indicates the accessibility status of the PDF documents over time;
    including measures needed to remediate PDF documents for full PDF/UA compliance.
    Such fact reports are of indispensable value as a basis for your entity's
    continuous accessibility work and accessibility reports.

    Tools and services for successful use of PDF/UA for accessible PDF

    Contact NewFormat, we will guide you to the right tools and services for your business

    Sample audit scan of your PDF documents for free!

    NewFormat is happy to carry out an initial sample test/audit scan
    of your document resources at no cost to you!

    We also offer subscription services where we scan your domain(s) according
    to some desired regularity; e.g. once a year, every quarter, every week,..


    Contact NewFormat for a free sample test/audit scan for Accessible PDF

More Information and Resources

PDF/UA - Icon

Warning - Icon

Warning for Inaccessible PDF!

    Today complex digital ecosystems are used to store enterprise information;
    like large volumes of digital documents and digital information defining
    how websites (with HTML/CSS/JavaScript pages, images, videos) and
    webb content are exposed towards visitors.

    Those documents are usually delivered as PDFs;
    think of all the forms, legal documents, white papers and
    other digital documents that your employees, customers and
    site visitors view every day from your website.

    Websites hosting inaccessible documents can be a significant
    liability risk even if you have fixed the websites's HTML content.

    Please be aware, the W3C/WCAG 2.1 recommendation for accessible web does not itself
    guarantee that a PDF document exposed on the website is an "Accessible PDF".
    Instead, accessible PDF requires full compliance with the ISO Standard PDF/UA.

    Avoid litigation risks by ensuring that also all PDF documents on your
    website are accessible for everyone; with or without disabilities.

Access for All - PAC3 Check - Error - Does not comply with PDF/UA - Not an accessible PDF - Banner

For more information contact NewFormat

NewFormat AB

Smörblommegränd 14, SE-165 72 Hässelby (Stockholm), Sweden
tel:+46 (0)70 631 53 01

All content © copyright 2008-2020 NewFormat AB. All rights reserved.

PDF/UA - Ikon

Accessible PDF