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RE: @title's relation to accessibility

From: John Foliot <foliot@wats.ca>
Date: Tue, 4 Sep 2007 00:32:33 -0700
To: <public-html@w3.org>, <wai-xtech@w3.org>
Message-ID: <007701c7eec5$c219b0a0$0601a8c0@Piglet>

Sander Tekelenburg wrote:
>> Remember that "accessibility" doesn't just mean "readable to blind
>> people".
> 
> Within the W3C space, it does. I dislike it, but I think we need to
> be realistic about it.

I must take exception with this.  Nowhere within the W3C space(and
specifically WAI) does it say that accessibility is *just* about being
readable to blind people.  It does state that "accessibility" is about
accommodating people with disabilities, but it transcends simply the blind.
Users with mobility impairments (who for example cannot use a mouse) are
disadvantaged when actions/interactions are mouse-centric.  The deaf and
hard of hearing are short-changed when videos are posted without captioning,
and providing usable content for the myriad of users with cognitive
disabilities remains a challenge for all - in fact the accessibility
community itself continues to grapple with this issue, as there are really
no easy answers here.  At best, these users might have in common the need to
use *MORE* than simply a web browser - they might also be using an Adaptive
Technology.

Universal Access (which is not addressed within WAI specifically) espouses
exactly what it's name might suggest - solutions that benefit all, but in
different ways.  The ideal poster child here is cut curbs: originally
mandated to assist users in wheelchairs (less than 5% of the US population
according to stats) today they are used and appreciated by mothers with
strollers, deliverymen with dollies, and "kids" on rollerblades and
skateboards (to name but 3 non-disabled groups). 
 
> 
>  [3] the HTML5 draft now says that @alt is
> no longer required, making authors wonder again/more about @title...

This ship has not sailed yet, and "no longer requiring @alt" is far from
conceded.  At best it is a suggestion, and one that is not universally
agreed-to or supported. To suggest or consider otherwise is plain wrong.
 
JF 
Received on Tuesday, 4 September 2007 07:32:45 GMT

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