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Re: My case for the obsoletion of longdesc (Was: 48-Hour Consensus Call: InstateLongdesc CP Update)

From: Laura Carlson <laura.lee.carlson@gmail.com>
Date: Sat, 15 Sep 2012 10:22:09 -0500
Message-ID: <CAOavpvd+kpM1z-837yfMwm+hL0SmqvpRrm3cPGD_yqBgoQb2cw@mail.gmail.com>
To: James Craig <jcraig@apple.com>
Cc: HTML Accessibility Task Force <public-html-a11y@w3.org>, w3c-wai-pf@w3.org
Hi James,

Welcome to the HTML working group and accessibility task force. I
appreciate your perspective. Thank you for posting.

The concept "deprecate" does not exist in HTML5.

According to the HTML5 specification obsolete features must not be
used by authors [1]. Obsolete features trigger errors. An error for a
proper longdesc is simply wrong. People should not be reprimanded for
doing the right thing. On the contrary, they should be applauded.

> 1. *There are existing, valid alternatives to longdesc in HTML 5, some
> of which work

Not from all perspectives.
http://www.d.umn.edu/~lcarlson/research/ld-solutions.html

> To the best of my knowledge, one of these approaches (the iframe
> example listed at http://cookiecrook.com/longdesc/iframe/)

iframe to the best of my knowledge:
http://www.d.umn.edu/~lcarlson/research/constriants/iframe.html

> Software and hardware life-cycles are ever-changing.

Yes! that is why we have drafted  new spec text for the rendering
section, which will help browser vendors improve support.

> My belief is that this drawn-out, years-long debate over longdesc
> tarnished the reputation of web accessibility opinion within the web
> standards and technology communities, because longdesc itself was not
> worth the effort that many of you expended to save it.

The HTML Chairs control the timetable. I have brought the
repercussions of delay to their attention repeatedly in the past to no
avail. They choose not to expedite the ISSUE 30 contrary to their May
2011 commitment to do exactly that.

I realize that browser vendors such as Apple have a vested interest in
ISSUE-30. If  it was not worth the effort I find it difficult to
believe that we would still be having this debate.

Best Regards,
Laura

[1] http://www.w3.org/TR/2011/WD-html5-20110525/obsolete.html#non-conforming-features
Received on Saturday, 15 September 2012 15:22:36 GMT

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