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A small set of icons with guidance on how and when to use them.
Services that use icons:
If you've used icons on your service and seen them tested with users, please add your experiences in the comments below
created this issue from a note
in GOV.UK Design System Community Backlog
Jan 12, 2018
We use icons (or symbols) in data tables on our service to indicate the reason for missing or suppressed data. A key is provided beneath the table. Here's an example:
The rationale for these is that there isn't space to write in words within the table why the data is missing, and that even if there was, the repeated text would be distracting.
We tested these, and they worked well, with most users spotting the explanation quickly.
We use three different symbols, although it's rare that more than one is used in the same table (and I don't think we have any tables that use all three yet):
A short visually-hidden textual explanation is added next to each of the symbols for screen readers. We've not (yet) tested this.
Some templates on GOV.UK (new stories, press releases, consultations...) include social media icons for use as share links:
These are placed before the name of the social media platform (eg "Twitter"), with visually-hidden "Share on" text in-between.
See https://insidegovuk.blog.gov.uk/2013/12/02/a-time-for-sharing-government-content-on-facebook-and-twitter/ and https://insidegovuk.blog.gov.uk/2013/12/02/a-time-for-sharing-government-content-on-facebook-and-twitter/
There's some new WCAG 2.1 (Level AA) guidelines around contrast for graphical elements:
"Parts of graphics required to understand the content, except when a particular presentation of graphics is essential to the information being conveyed."