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Re: 48-Hour Consensus Call: InstateLongdesc CP Update

From: Leif Halvard Silli <xn--mlform-iua@xn--mlform-iua.no>
Date: Wed, 19 Sep 2012 12:00:20 +0200
To: Silvia Pfeiffer <silviapfeiffer1@gmail.com>
Cc: Steve Faulkner <faulkner.steve@gmail.com>, Maciej Stachowiak <mjs@apple.com>, John Foliot <john@foliot.ca>, Sam Ruby <rubys@intertwingly.net>, public-html-a11y@w3.org
Message-ID: <20120919120020331587.39379cf8@xn--mlform-iua.no>
I did not have time too look through it, but those I looked at either 
contained only a "#" or they contained (another) image file. With 
regard to the first (#) then I agree "misinformed" about the potential 
negative effect. With regard to image URLs inside @longdesc, then there 
are image light box solutions - libraries - that  more or less 
consciously makes incorrect use of longdesc. (Today they would perhaps 
picked at @data-foo attribute instead - but that was not 'valid' then.) 
Of the few I scanned, no one contained text. However, there was an open 
source photo album CMS that, in an legacy version, inserted text into 
longdesc. That is to say: Some of the documented misuse seems to stem 
from CMSes and libraries that got it wrong. And I imaging that 
developers of CMSes and lightbox libraries would not have done such 
things if the negative effect could have been perceived by a browser 
that they themselves could use. = It is very important with 

Leif H S

Silvia Pfeiffer, Wed, 19 Sep 2012 19:33:23 +1000:
> Having had a look at this data makes me wonder ... since none of the
> sites that you've crawled had used longdesc correctly, either your set
> of sites is dubious or we are really staring at a totally mis-informed
> Web developer community.
> Silvia.
> On Wed, Sep 19, 2012 at 7:53 AM, Steve Faulkner
> <faulkner.steve@gmail.com> wrote:
>> Hi all,
>> As part of a survey of the top 10,000 web sites home pages carried out
>> back in April [1] I grepped the instances of longdesc [2]
>> this is what I found:
>> 1938 matches in 86 files.
>> You can review the data and draw your own conclusions.
>> [1] 
>> [2] http://www.html5accessibility.com/HTML5data/dump/longdesc.html
>> regards
>> SteveF
>> On 18 September 2012 22:34, Maciej Stachowiak <mjs@apple.com> wrote:
>>> On Sep 18, 2012, at 2:16 PM, John Foliot <john@foliot.ca> wrote:
>>>> Maciej Stachowiak wrote:
>>>>> In addition to issues with these specific suggestions, keep in mind
>>>>> that a previously raised concern with longdesc is that the corpus of
>>>>> available longdesc content in the wild appears to have very high level
>>>>> of bad content.
>>>> I encourage you or others to provide specific proof of that assertion.
>>>> On one hand, we have professional content producers that are creating
>>>> @longdesc content today (Pearson Publishing and the  Government of 
>>>> Canada to
>>>> name 2), who, if nothing else, are probably quite good at document
>>>> management practices.
>>>> (http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-html-a11y/2012Sep/0210.html)
>>>> On the other hand, we have a 5-year old blog post from Mark Pilgrim
>>>> (http://blog.whatwg.org/the-longdesc-lottery) that alludes to statistics
>>>> that Ian Hickson accrued, but was unwilling to publicly share.
>>>> Do you have any other "proof" of this assertion? Have you or anyone else
>>>> "surveyed" the corpus recently to see if there have been any 
>>>> changes to this
>>>> assertion over the past 5 years? (Note: I have not, but given that 
>>>> serious
>>>> content publishers are now using this attribute routinely in their 
>>>> work, I
>>>> can only surmise it has improved significantly - but feel free to dispute
>>>> that claim with proof to the contrary.)
>>> I'm just mentioning the point of concern that was raised. I am not 
>>> interested in debating its validity.
>>> I will note that, if you want to persuade browser vendors to 
>>> implement something, claiming that the evidence provided is not 
>>> "proof" is unlikely to be a very compelling argument. Providing 
>>> actual evidence to the contrary may be more compelling.
>>> The rest of your message seems to be more about whether longdesc 
>>> should be "retained" in the spec in the sense of a conformance 
>>> requirement that has no engineering impact. I don't have any 
>>> substantive comments on that question. But I do note that it seems 
>>> to be back in the mode of "mandate something that browsers won't 
>>> implement".
>>> Regards,
>>> Maciej
Received on Wednesday, 19 September 2012 10:00:57 UTC

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