Using Image Descriptions and Alt Text on Facebook and Twitter

Using Image Descriptions and Alt Text on Facebook and Twitter

Did you know you can edit the alt text on your Facebook and image descriptions for Twitter photos? It turns out, increasing the accessibility of the images you post may be easier than you think. This can be useful to consider if you aren’t explicitly describing what’s in the photo when you post. By making a few simple tweaks, you can really increase the access of your content.

Editing Alt Text on Facebook

To edit a photo you’ve already uploaded…Screen Shot 2018-02-06 at 12.46.21 PM

  1. go to the photo and select options on the bottom right.
  2. Then select “Change Alt Text”.
  3. Click override automatically generated alt text.
  4. This will bring you to a section where you can change the automatically generated text (which is often a bit broad).

Screen Shot 2018-02-06 at 12.46.13 PM

If you’re uploading a photo for the first time, click “Edit Photo” on the image and add the alt text as you’re creating the post.



Still have questions? This Facebook tutorial may help. 


Image Descriptions on Twitter

  • First step, make sure “Accessibility” image descriptions and video tweets is turned on under your settings.
  • Edit past images uploaded through your studio library on twitter.
  • When uploading an image add the description by clicking on the line under the image that explicitly says “add description”.

Accessibility settings in Twitter

image showing where to add a description

Remember, Keep your description/text brief: 
A question to ask yourself is– what is the main idea being expressed by the image? Your best bet is to describe it in simple language, keeping it brief and precise.  A few words or a short sentence should do the trick. If the image is simply decorative, you also have the option to leave out the alt text.  This is similar for when you’re posting a decorative image on the website but you don’t have to use <img src=”decorative.jpg” alt=“ ”>,  you can just leave blank.

Helpful resources:


What other ways to you help make social media accessible? Please let us know!

Listening in Nature and Online

A rabbit listens for predators
Photo by Joshua Davis

While animals are fun to listen to, they also tend to be fantastic listeners. Especially when they depend on their keen hearing to trap a meal or escape a predator.  When you look at creatures like bats, rabbits, foxes and so many others, you can’t help but marvel at how well they listen, and how their life depends on it.

I feel very similarly about listening with social media. I truly believe you can’t survive the social media landscape for long without listening!

Beth Kanter has written several fantastic posts about listening as an nonprofit organization any many of her articles point you to the right questions. For example, her post titled “Are you a listening organization?” not only shares great information about how to promote a listening culture internally, but it also discusses the 3 basic concepts for creating a structured listening strategy in your organization and making it a priority.

Tools to Check Out For Listening:


Search Comments and Forums:

Blog and Social Media Search

Searching Twitter

Other Great Listening Tools

  • – and PostRank analytics – Tracks your blog posts with engagement measurement
  • Any RSS feed for your search terms!

It’s important  to listen to your audience and the people you care about. The social web makes “listening” or politely stalking, as I like to call it– much easier! So check out these sites and make your own Google Dashboard or RSS feed and let me know how it goes 🙂 Then you’ll be listening like an animal!

Wildlife Watching with a Twitter #Hashtag

There are a number of effective ways to monitor response with social media. Today I’m feeling inclined to talk about tracking Twitter hashtags.

With NWF’s Wildlife Watch program we encourage people to #NWF every time they see wildlife, this in turn goes on our website.  It’s been a long-term campaign with random spikes in interest and observations.

I’ve decided to talk about two of the tools that I’ve found most useful. While I used to rely primarily on that site seems to have fallen to the wayside by other sites that track more reliably and with interesting data.  Here are my two choices!

What the Hashtag?!
– this serves as a user’s editable encyclopedia for hashtags – so if you have a hashtag you want to track– this is one of my favorite options. Not only can you RSS the results– but it gives you helpful information such as how often the tag is used each day and it details who the top ten users are. This data is very helpful if you are tracking either an event or a long-term campaign!

Twazzup: This tool is more visual and helps me see the wildlife sightings in greater detail (it allows me to see twitpics and photos). It also links off to recent articles where NWF is mentioned. Overall– it’s a great visual representation of what #NWF is doing and even shows the large number of contributors over time (it tracks for more than a week– unlike WThashtag).

While these are just two of the tools I use– they are by far my favorite. I’m interested to know what tools you couldn’t monitor without–

4 Online Communities A Wildlife Enthusiast Would Love

As a wildlife enthusiast, I get excited at the thought of communicating with others who are passionate about observing and learning about wildlife. Since I’m lucky enough to interact online with people of all walks of life, I do take note of where I interact with some extraordinary people. The following are great communities to check out if you want to find me and others chatting about wildlife! (In no particular order…)

1) Twitter – I am continually impressed by the people I meet on Twitter. If you are a person who is passionate about something, Twitter is an excellent place to find like-minded individuals. If you are interested in finding wildlife watchers on twitter there are several ways I recommend–just by searching #wildlife, #nwf or #birding you will find new people to follow. Check out or and search those who include wildlife or a specific species in their profile.

2) Wild ObsIf you’re looking to log your wildlife sightings then there are several great places for that, but if you are savvy with a phone or want to communicate their exact location–WildObs is an excellent place to go.

While many of the users are also active on Twitter the community and the photos shared on WildObs are freaking fun to check out and I feel like I can spend hours surfing through all the sightings. Definitely worth a try if you find yourself wishing to share the watching experience with others! Follow @WildObs

3) Wiser Earth – Aside from being a great look into the world’s conservation efforts, Wiser Earth is a community that helps bridge divides and provide meaningful resources for making the world a sustainable place. The community is full of passion and there are great wildlife resources posted throughout the site. Take a look and add a link to your favorite resource while you are at it! Follow @WiserEarth


4) Birdpost While this site does cater very specifically toward birds I couldn’t leave it out. I am really impressed with the depth this site offers while giving bird watchers flexibility and a pleasing design to organize their life-lists and track their sightings. If you consider yourself a birder and you like technology you should definitely check out this site. It’s so fun to play with!  Follow @birdpost.


Would love to hear what other sites are out there…