Making Accessible Websites for the United Nations

Textual Content

Simple and Clear Language

WAI Definition (Checkpoint 14.1)

Use the clearest and simplest language appropriate for a site's content.


The information should be organized in a logical format, offering to the user clear, comprehensible content in simple language.


With a simple writing style that avoids jargon you can reach a larger audience. Web users are quick readers. They skim contents easily when it's clearly structured and organized. Furthermore, simple language is also beneficial to the numerous visitors of the UN homepage who are not native speakers of one of the six official languages.


The Internet encourages the use of less formal styles of presentation and language than are normally used in United Nations materials. Author departments and offices should use concise, direct language in their unofficial materials on the Internet, especially on homepages, aimed at meeting outside user needs for clarity and directness, including those whose primary language is not one of the UN official languages. Slang and idiomatic phrases should be avoided, and abbreviations, acronyms and technical terminology should be explained, used with discretion, and only where widely recognizable.



There is no recommended tool to check this point, so check the page manually. However, a useful strategy would be to collect feedback among users representative of the site intended audience.

Success Criteria