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Re: @longdesc scope (was: HTML Media Transcript, Issue-194: Are we done?)

From: Silvia Pfeiffer <silviapfeiffer1@gmail.com>
Date: Tue, 10 Jul 2012 09:39:49 +0200
Message-ID: <CAHp8n2mRn9ja=85Ry_oR704Ds5T4xROpLyLbOt8N80vo+wm7Sg@mail.gmail.com>
To: Leif Halvard Silli <xn--mlform-iua@xn--mlform-iua.no>
Cc: John Foliot <john@foliot.ca>, David Singer <singer@apple.com>, Chaals McCathieNevile <w3b@chaals.com>, HTML Accessibility Task Force <public-html-a11y@w3.org>

I've tried to argue this line of thought before, too.

I've come to the conclusion that a transcript is indeed one type of
long description and likely sufficient as a text replacement for
video. However, there are other types of long descriptions that people
may also want to publish and the @longdesc (@aria-describedat)
attribute is more appropriate for those. I personally don't think
those other types of long descriptions are necessary, since if you
have a full-text transcript (or better even a collated transcript [1])
you get all the information that you need - and summaries are usually
published somewhere else on the page, such as in a description
section, so @aria-describedby is more appropriate there. But I've come
to accept that there may not always be a transcript and such other
type of long description may be easier to author and publish then.



[1] http://www.w3.org/TR/WCAG10-CORE-TECHS/#collated-transcripts

On Tue, Jul 10, 2012 at 8:07 AM, Leif Halvard Silli
<xn--mlform-iua@xn--mlform-iua.no> wrote:
> John Foliot, Mon, 9 Jul 2012 13:26:23 -0700:
>>>> this is not a transcript.
>>> However: That was not the kind of long alternative text that I had
>>> mind.
>> I think that your attempt to conceptually merge the ideas of transcript and
>> longer textual description (in what feels almost like a re-telling of the
>> abbr/acronym story),
> @abbr to @acronym can be said to be like @longdesc to @transcript. But
> if, at the time of the decision, IE supported it and the IE enabler -
> the so called HTML5 shiv - had been known, then I think the outcome of
> the @acronym debate might have been differently ...
>> while at a higher level may make sense, will ultimately
>> lead to confusion at the authoring level.
> David's view of what a "long description" is, have *me* confused: Can I
> use @longdesc to tell a scenic story - a cartoon/comic? Is it not a
> "long description" if I deliver a long alternative text that takes a
> "show, don't tell" approach, as opposed to a "tell, don't show"
> approach?
> The following is part of the spec text proposed by the instate longdesc
> proposal:
>    "Web authors are encouraged to use this attribute for long text
>     alternatives that are either too long  [ snip ]"
> URL: <http://www.d.umn.edu/~lcarlson/research/ld-spec-text3.html>
> This, to me, is a quite liberating small piece of text, as it - with
> the phrase "long text alternatives", alludes to HTML5's many references
> to @alt as "alternative" text for the graphic. In contrast, the phrase
> "long description" keeps limiting the understanding of what a long text
> alternative can be.
> If it were to me I would thus have tried to underplay these confusing
> associations connected with "longdesc" from the instate longdesc
> proposal, by simply replacing the propose spec text's 4 occurrences of
> the phrase "long description" with the phrase "long text alternative".
> For example, I think the proposal's wording "a long description of the
> image" leads authors to a limiting interpretation of what it can
> represent. To instead say "a long text _alternative for_ the image"
> would have lead thoughts in more fruitful directions. I would perhaps
> even have added a *note* which said that @longdesc is not only meant to
> point to a 'description', in the pure sense of that word, but that the
> @longdesc resource may contain long alternative texts of the same sorts
> as the @alt attribute.
>> "Transcript" (as opposed to
>> transcription, which is what *you* seem to be ultimately talking about) in
>> the world of multimedia/video has a distinct and well-understood meaning,
>> and trying to leverage the higher idea of your proposal onto the web will be
>> hurtful rather than helpful: after all, a transcript could also be "a copy
>> of a student's permanent academic record" [1], or "a written record of
>> spoken language in court proceedings" [2], so attempting to use a pure
>> dictionary definition of any attribute can often lead to confusion.
> When it comes to the dictionary, then it is the dictionary meaning of
> "long  description" I am concerned about.
>> Leave "@Transcript" to be what it is already known to be (as defined for
>> media/video), and reinstate @longdesc, [...]
> A few messages back, I said that I am parking the idea to use
> @transcript for the IMG element. But what I have not parked is the idea
> that @longdesc could point to content that others than me have
> described as comic transcripts.
> --
> Leif H Silli
Received on Tuesday, 10 July 2012 07:40:39 UTC

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