The Internet Monitor project at the Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society at Harvard University in the United States has announced the launch of AccessCheck, a tool that allows people to test the accessibility of websites in real time in over 50 countries around the world.
AccessCheck is the first such tool to be made available with a broad range of consistent data with disclosed methodologies. It is powered by Internet Monitor project’s data as well as the open data generated by its partners, the Open Observatory of Network Interference’s (OONI) and Information Controls Lab (ICLab). Limited release of the tool for registered users has begun.
AccessCheck lets users enter a web address and choose from one of over 50 countries in which to run a test. Clicking the “check accessibility” button returns a test results page with a thumb up/down notification indicating whether the site is available or unavailable in that country, as well as a real-time screenshot and more detailed data on status codes, connection timings, and any errors encountered.
Requesting a test for a website/country pair will return the results of tests that have been run by users in the past. If recent data does not exist, the test will be added to the test queue, which executes tests in the order they are received. Tests, regardless of age, can be retested to obtain new accessibility data
AccessCheck combines data from virtual private network endpoints, virtual private servers, and from measurements collected by the ICLab and the OONI.
The tool is intended to inform and support the efforts of those engaged in related public interest work, including journalists, academic researchers, and civil society organizations.
Near-real time test results are available to all users of the tool. Unregistered users of AccessCheck will only be able to see the results of previous tests run by authenticated users, and verified users who are signed into their accounts can run new tests.
The tool can be access at https://accesscheck.thenetmonitor.org/ and Internet Monitor project is also soliciting feedback from users to improve its functionality. Persons who have used the site and have feedback to make have been encouraged to email their feedback to email@example.com.