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Are there concrete guidelines about accessibility in skeleton loaders? How might we design them to be more accessible?

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The guideline that comes to mind for me is WCAG 2.1 Success Criterion 2.2.2, which states:

Moving, blinking, scrolling

For any moving, blinking or scrolling information that (1) starts automatically, (2) lasts more than five seconds, and (3) is presented in parallel with other content, there is a mechanism for the user to pause, stop, or hide it unless the movement, blinking, or scrolling is part of an activity where it is essential;

When an entire screen is loading, the content is not "presented in parallel with other content", but some more asynchronous sites (like social media) do use skeletons at a content area level.

Additionally, screen readers might become tripped up by skeleton loading components and should use ARIA labels. Ray Roman suggests:

Season them with some combination of aria-disabled={true} and aria-label="loading"...

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