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Applies to


Use for

Mobile & Web

Section 508:

  • §1194.31(a)
  • §1194.31(b)

WCAG 2.0:

  • 1.4.2

Audio must not play automatically unless a method is provided to pause or stop the audio

When audio plays automatically within multimedia, the sound may interfere with a user's ability to navigate with assistive technologies that utilize speech. It is difficult for a user to navigate to the playback control and disable the audio features while listening to the speech output from the assistive technology.


Do not play audio automatically unless a setting where the user can opt in before content is autpplayed and the user is forewarned.

HTML Example

<object width="200" height="16">
<param name="autoplay" value="false">
<embed src="/" width="200"
height="16" autoplay="false">Rock and Roll

HTML Failure

<object width="200" height="16">
<param name="autoplay" value="true">
<embed src="/" width="200"
height="16" autoplay="true"></embed> 

/* Flash example */
A flash movie loads and an avatar begins talking about features of a site.


Audio output within multimedia must not play automatically when the page loads. If audio content must load automatically, ensure the audio output plays for a maximum of 3 seconds or there is a mechanism near the top of the page to stop or pause the audio.


Recommended tool/method: Manual / Screen Reader

Ensure audio does not play automatically on load
  1. Verify that audio does not begin automatically when the module loads
  2. If audio does play, verify the audio stops after 3 seconds or a method is provided to pause or stop the audio
More in this category: Text to Speech »