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Re: 48-Hour Consensus Call: ARIA-DescribedAT & Longdesc

From: David Singer <singer@apple.com>
Date: Mon, 02 Apr 2012 09:25:06 -0700
Message-id: <9D52C29C-3E58-40A9-ADEA-CC561BF38382@apple.com>
To: HTML Accessibility Task Force <public-html-a11y@w3.org>

On Apr 1, 2012, at 18:33 , Matthew Turvey wrote:

> On 1 April 2012 14:53, Geoff Freed <geoff_freed@wgbh.org> wrote:
>>> - Support for longdesc in browsers and AT is poor and has been so for
>>> many years.
>> 
>> GF:
>> True, but there *is* support, and it isn't new-- it has been available for
>> years.  Ask anyone who uses JAWS (anecdotally speaking, the most popular
>> screen reader in use today) in combination with IE or Firefox (anecdotally
>> speaking, the two most popular browsers in use today).  Better yet, try it
>> yourself.  It works, and it works every time.
> 
> I don't think that's entirely accurate. There's at least some evidence
> that even JAWS users sometimes have difficulty accessing longdesc
> links. See:
> http://www.w3.org/html/wg/wiki/ChangeProposals/LongdescZeroEdit#Problems_with_Longdesc
> 

I think that the next point on that link is even more pertinent.  Correct longdesc is so rarely provided that you have to be incredibly optimistic even to think it's worth asking to see it. According to that link, the chance that an image will have a useful longdesc is around 9% - and of the rest, it's not that it's missing, but that it's not providing what it purports to provide.

That's hardly 'working every time'.

David Singer
Multimedia and Software Standards, Apple Inc.
Received on Monday, 2 April 2012 16:26:17 GMT

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