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Re: alt attribute - a very simple proposal

From: Smylers <Smylers@stripey.com>
Date: Wed, 20 Aug 2008 07:38:41 +0100
To: HTML WG <public-html@w3.org>
Message-ID: <20080820063841.GC17689@stripey.com>

Patrick H. Lauke writes:

> Smylers wrote:
> > I believe that early in the life of this working group it was decreed
> > that "accessibility" is to be interpreted narrowly, as "accessibility
> > for those with disabilities".  For "accessibility for all" the term
> > "universality" was coined; this includes catering for those without
> > disabilities but who use Lynx or have low bandwidth or whatever.
> >
> > Clearly there are situations in which the alt attribute is useful other
> > than helping those with disabilities.  So it would be odd to delegate
> > custodian of this attribute to a working group which is only focused on
> > one set of users.
> Isn't the use of lynx, or turning off images for low bandwidth,  
> functionally equivalent to the situation of VI users?

I'm not sure.

Given that this working group felt the need to make the above
distinction, so that whatever the thread was at the time could discuss
just accessibility without universality, perhaps not.

> Also, from the introduction to the current WCAG 2 CR
> "Although these guidelines cover a wide range of issues, they are not  
> able to address the needs of people with all types, degrees and  
> combinations of disabilities. These guidelines also make Web content  
> more usable by older individuals with changing abilities due to aging  
> and often improve usability for users in general."

That the current guidelines happen to do that isn't the same thing as
the spec being written by a group which explicitly has universality as
an aim.

And "often improve usability for users in general" isn't necessarily the
same as providing the best balance of universality for all users.

Received on Wednesday, 20 August 2008 06:39:28 UTC

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