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Re: Flickr and alt

From: Boris Zbarsky <bzbarsky@MIT.EDU>
Date: Mon, 18 Aug 2008 16:58:48 -0400
Message-ID: <48A9E288.3080900@mit.edu>
To: David Poehlman <david.poehlman@handsontechnologeyes.com>
CC: W3C WAI-XTECH <wai-xtech@w3.org>, public-html@w3.org

David Poehlman wrote:
> so I don't have the right to access the web?

Please do me a favor and read what I said.  I said that your right to 
access the web does not trump Bob's right to publish his website, even 
if it's written in red text on a green background.

> does accessibility do actual harm?

Requiring it from people who aren't willing (or perhaps even able) to 
put the time and money in to provide it can in fact do actual harm, yes, 
by restricting their speech.

You will note, for example, that the ADA requirements for workplaces 
have exceptions for small businesses.

> aren't we doing harm when we force people to speak/write a language 
> just because of where they happen to be?

I'm not sure what you're asking here.  There is no legislation where I 
live, last I checked, that requires a resident of the area to either 
speak or write any language.  This doesn't hold true worldwide, of course.

> Yes, there are fringe and extreme cases

I'll note that you didn't address the actual questions I asked.  Do you 
view those as "fringe and extreme cases".

> but there are also fundamental building blocks reaching for a higher 
> society and the further we evolve, the more building blocks we find and the 
> more resistance to those building blocks we find.

Honestly, I can't make sense of this statement....

> There have been times 
> when exclusion was done on the basis of what your gender or ethnicity were. 
> do we still uphold this?

This is what's called a strawman.  There is a difference between the 
concepts of "going out of one's way to be exclusive" and "not going out 
of one's way to be inclusive".  A huge difference, especially when one 
talks of rights, since forcing someone to spend effort being inclusive 
is no difference from forcing someone to spend effort building roads 
from a rights perspective: you're using superior force to make someone 
spend their labor in a way they don't want to spend it.

Note that historically governments have done both, so it's not that 
neither should be done.  But it should be recognized as the 
rights-infringement it is.

> i fear we veer though.

Perhaps.  But perhaps this just highlights the fundamentally different 
points of view people seem to have on this whole set of issues (most 
emphatically including "rights").

-Boris
Received on Monday, 18 August 2008 21:09:48 UTC

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