Hachette Book Group (HBG) is committed to making products that are accessible to anyone. Our goal is to improve access to our books and websites so that customers, employees, and users of all backgrounds and life experiences may enjoy them.
HBG is a contributing member to the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) and has been actively involved in supporting EPUB specifications since the format’s inception with the International Digital Publishing Forum. Nearly all our ebook content is supplied to partners in EPUB format, which natively includes basic support for accessibility features across many devices and retail platforms. We continuously aim to improve our production standards for ebooks so that we can meet the highest accessibility standards whenever possible. We are currently working with Benetech.org toward our goal of meeting both the Daisy Consortium’s ACE standards and W3C’s WCAG Level AA standards for all new EPUB content by 2024. We aspire to normalize such features in ebooks as ebook-exclusive alternative image and graphic descriptions, advanced navigation, and text-to-speech support.
HBG’s publishers strive to ensure that our bestselling novels and nonfiction titles are available in large print editions whenever possible, as either hardcover versions suitable for libraries or as paperback versions more conveniently priced for consumers. Type is modified from the original design to be 18 point or larger, with additional line spacing for easier reading. If a title is not currently available in large print, all HBG ebooks are designed to enable type resizing and/or zoom, so that readers can adjust the text to the display size of their preference.
Since Spring 2013, Hachette Audio, HBG’s publishing group focused on audio adaptations, has provided our unabridged audiobook recordings free of charge to the Library of Congress’s National Library Service (NLS) as part of its popular Talking Books program. With this collaboration, HBG helps the NLS best serve its user base of 500,000 patrons of all ages who are unable to read or handle print books.
National Library Service
HBG makes all our active ebooks and audiobooks available via the National Library Service (NLS). Operated by the Library of Congress, the NLS permits registered local library patrons across the United States to download Talking Books and ebraille versions of ebooks through its free digital accessibility service known as BARD. BARD is available as a free application to Apple and Android users, as well as through devices available for long-term loan at participating libraries.
HBG makes all our active ebooks available through Bookshare.org. Bookshare® is the world’s largest accessible online library for people with print disabilities. Thanks to funding from the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs, Bookshare is free for all qualified U.S. students. Individuals who are not students or international patrons can pay a nominal annual fee for their membership. If a reader-requested title is print-exclusive or not available in ebook format, HBG produces a special PDF exclusive to Bookshare for the unique purpose of making such title accessible to the widest spectrum of potential readers.
Employees with Disabilities Employee Resource Group
The Employees with Disabilities Employee Resource Group was created to provide a welcoming and safe space for HBG employees with disabilities to support each other. Together, we advocate for our perspectives and needs, sharing meaningful feedback with management on company policies, as needed. We seek to work from an intersectional perspective: members of this group may describe themselves using person-first language (i.e., person with a disability) or with identity-first language (i.e., autistic person). Members do not need to disclose their diagnoses to join this group and are welcome to maintain the level of privacy that feels comfortable. Individuals who consider themselves temporarily disabled are also welcome.
We are working toward making our websites compliant with W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.1 AA standards or better. We include accessibility best practices as part of new designs and incorporate feedback from colleagues to improve and test accessibility.
As a leading book publisher, we believe in the importance of creating positive economic impact in the communities we serve. HBG is committed to supporting and working with diverse businesses and suppliers across gender, race, ethnicity, socioeconomic background, sexual orientation, veteran, and disability status.
If you are a vendor or supplier and would like to work with us, please fill out the contact form below.
HBG takes our commitment to accessibility seriously. We wish to offer the best possible experience for our customers, so consumer feedback is a critical part of our product development process.
If you have any thoughts, suggestions, or recommendations to improve accessibility, we would love to hear from you. Please complete the form below, so that we can consider your feedback on our design improvements. Thank you!
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