New Yorker Mary Conner has filed a lawsuit against Beyoncé’s Parkwood Entertainment as she claims that the singer’s website violates the Americans with Disabilities Act by being unusable to those with visual impairments.
Mary, who is described as having “no vision whatsoever” in the lawsuit, found herself unable to use Beyoncé’s website while trying to get tickets for a concert, resulting in her missing out on the event, as the website posed “numerous barriers which limited her accessibility to the goods and services offered on the website,” writes attorney Dan Shaked.
He continues: “There are many important pictures on beyonce.com that lack a text equivalent … As a result, Plaintiff and blind beyonce.com customers are unable to determine what is on the website, browse the website or investigate and/or make purchases.”
The lawsuit explains that the website does not offer alt-text for images, lacks an accessible drop-down menu or navigational links, and does not allow the user to navigate using a keyboard instead of a mouse, and its “exclusively visual interface” does not allow those with a visual impairment to use it without the aid of a sighted assistant.
It seeks compensation for those who have been “subjected to unlawful discrimination” and have Parkwood Entertainment, Beyoncé’s management and entertainment company, alter the website to allow blind and visually impaired users to navigate it.
Beyoncé is one more in a line of celebrities who are being taken to task over websites that are inaccessible to their visually impaired fans. Last year, singer Pharrell Williams found himself the subject of a lawsuit by Victor Lopez, who has sued more than 20 companies for having an inaccessible website, including the jeweller Daum and cosmetics company Lalique.
Parkwood Entertainment has not responded to UNITE’s request for comment at this time.Get your copy of UNITE Magazine