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Re: common image use example missing from current draft

From: James Graham <jg307@cam.ac.uk>
Date: Wed, 26 Sep 2007 10:01:27 +0100
Message-ID: <46FA1FE7.4070301@cam.ac.uk>
To: Steve Faulkner <sfaulkner@paciellogroup.com>
Cc: HTMLWG <public-html@w3.org>

Steve Faulkner wrote:
> Hi all.
> proposed addition to image alt examples on spec
> A common use of an image that is not currently covered in the examples 
> provided:
> when an image is the sole content of a link:
> <a href="homepage.html"><img src="logo.jpg" alt ="home"></a>
> In cases where an image is the sole content of a link then the alt 
> content should be a brief description of the link target.

Disclaimer: I haven't read enough of the out-of-band communication on 
this topic that I can be sure I have understood all the relevant 
arguments and that this hasn't already been discussed somewhere.

It seems like the case of an image as the sole content of a link might 
be special enough to warrant special consideration. In particular it 
seems that this is a case where, in the majority of cases, even 
auto-generated server side alt-text is likely to be better than 
auto-generated client-side alt-text since, at least in the case of 
internal links such as a photo album in which a image is a link to a 
larger version of itself, the server would have knowledge about the link 
destination. Possible suggestions:

Significant (in the sense of both present and non-empty) @alt be 
required on images that are the sole contents of links. Presumably this 
should also be extended to cover other types of embedded content which 
have the possibility of textual fallback.

In the case where such fallback content is missing but the link has a 
title attribute, the contents of that title attribute be used as the 
fallback content for the link.

"Mixed up signals
Bullet train
People snuffed out in the brutal rain"
--Conner Oberst
Received on Wednesday, 26 September 2007 09:03:12 UTC

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