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Re: ISSUE-31 Change Proposal

From: Laura Carlson <laura.lee.carlson@gmail.com>
Date: Thu, 28 Jan 2010 19:45:09 -0600
Message-ID: <1c8dbcaa1001281745t71295aa7m8021b4833941322d@mail.gmail.com>
To: Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch>, Janina Sajka <janina@rednote.net>, "Michael(tm) Smith" <mike@w3.org>
Cc: HTML Accessibility Task Force <public-html-a11y@w3.org>
Hi Ian,

> Is there a bug that this corresponds to?

Yes, HTML WG Issue 31 [1] has quite a few related Bugs. 8716
delineates 8171. Most of the text alternatives bugs are directly


HTML Issue 31 is open with three change proposals:

WAI CG Consensus Resolution document on Text alternatives in HTML 5
addressed the issue:

The two and a half year history of the issue is at:

I'm not sure how the task force wants to proceed. There has been some
talk of grouping topics and text alternatives was one of the
groupings. Janina? Mike? What is your recommendation?


Best Regards,

[1] http://www.w3.org/html/wg/tracker/issues/31
Laura L. Carlson

On 1/28/10, Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch> wrote:
> On Thu, 28 Jan 2010, Laura Carlson wrote:
>> I have drafted a Change Proposal for HTML ISSUE-31.
>> Summary:
>> The current guidance for conformance checkers for Section the
>> img element is unclear and does not implement WAI CG's advice on the
>> validation of short text alternatives. This change proposal replaces
>> the current guidance with clear guidance that lists all required short
>> text alternative options that exist to be considered valid. It enables
>> automatic validators to programmatically detect the presence or
>> absence of text alternatives.
>> Full proposal is at:
>> http://esw.w3.org/topic/HTML/ChangeProposals/ImgElement20090126
>> Ideas for improvement are most welcome.
> Is there a bug that this corresponds to? Off-hand I couldn't see any
> reason I would reject the editorial aspects of this proposal, and it would
> be quickest for everyone if we could just deal with the uncontroversial
> aspects in a bug rather than through the big process.
> Regarding the proposed normative changes, I disagree with several things:
>   * Making the presence of ARIA attributes make otherwise invalid HTML
>     valid. ARIA is only exposed to AT tools, but we need to make sure it
>     is possible to have an accessible experience even without use of an
>     AT, which means pages have to be conforming without using ARIA. ARIA
>     adds to the experience, but shouldn't be required to understand the
>     page.
>   * Adding an attribute whose exclusive purpose is shutting up a
>     validator. I do not believe this will result in an improvement in
>     accessibility. The one attribute from HTML4 that was like this (nohref
>     on the <area> element) was dropped in HTML5 because it turns out to
>     have not worked. I think it would be bad to make that mistake again.
>     (Even worse would be to add _two_ such attributes on the same element,
>     as is proposed here.)
>   * I do not think it is a good idea to make sighted people e-mailing
>     other sighted people privately have to either include alt="" text, or
>     have to write a spec that overrides this one. There's really no reason
>     to include alt text in that case.
>   * There are images whose contents are not known; just not catering for
>     that use case is not acceptable, IMHO.
> We should probably split these issues out into four (or more) separate
> change proposals though, rather than try to discuss them all at once,
> since they are somewhat orthogonal to each other.
> --
> Ian Hickson               U+1047E                )\._.,--....,'``.    fL
> http://ln.hixie.ch/       U+263A                /,   _.. \   _\  ;`._ ,.
> Things that are impossible just take longer.   `._.-(,_..'--(,_..'`-.;.'

Laura L. Carlson
Received on Friday, 29 January 2010 01:45:43 UTC

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