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Re: HTML Action Item 54 - ...draft text for HTML 5 spec to require producers/authors to include @alt on img elements.

From: Andrew Sidwell <w3c@andrewsidwell.co.uk>
Date: Sat, 24 May 2008 01:14:23 +0100
Message-ID: <48375DDF.6070107@andrewsidwell.co.uk>
To: Matt Morgan-May <mattmay@adobe.com>
CC: public-html@w3.org, 'W3C WAI-XTECH' <wai-xtech@w3.org>, wai-liaison@w3.org, 'HTML4All' <list@html4all.org>

Matt Morgan-May wrote:
> On 5/22/08 10:33 AM, "Andrew Sidwell" <w3c@andrewsidwell.co.uk> wrote:
>> Flickr is hardly an edge case.
> 
> On the contrary: Flickr is the _ultimate_ edge case.
> 
> I'll be the first to admit that there is a ceiling to what value Flickr can
> provide to non-sighted users (though the addition of video, and the audio
> that accompanies it, does alter the landscape). But even though user-sourced
> material can't be expected for all uploaded images, @alt can be provided for
> each of the 60-70 other images in that same document, even if in many cases
> it should be @alt="".
> 
> If even the poster child for optional @alt can apply meaningful alt text to
> 98%+ of the images it serves, then I fail to see how that's reason enough to
> make @alt optional for the rest of the web. Less than 2% of the image
> content on the most popular photo site on the web being inexpressible?

Depends how you define content.  If you think that the same image 
indicating "no new mail in inbox", served repeatedly, constitutes a new 
piece of content each time you serve it, maybe-- but I contend most 
people would quantify the amount of image content in terms of number of 
unique images; and the number of unique images on Flickr far outweigh 
the number of images used as chrome, such that the chrome images make up 
less than 0.000 015% of the image content available. [1]  This seems 
very different to your estimate of 98% and I think that mine pictures 
the real world better.

[1] Based on data from 
http://www.techcrunch.com/2007/11/13/2-billion-photos-on-flickr/ and 
your estimate of "60-70 other images" on each Flickr page.

Andrew Sidwell
Received on Saturday, 24 May 2008 00:15:27 GMT

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