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Re: Need differentiator between "no alt text provided" and "no alt text necessary"

From: Maciej Stachowiak <mjs@apple.com>
Date: Mon, 02 Feb 2009 15:36:19 -0800
Cc: James Craig <jcraig@apple.com>, public-html@w3.org
Message-id: <2D4621CA-2E19-410C-95A3-5EDBC2B3DDD5@apple.com>
To: Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch>

On Feb 2, 2009, at 3:32 PM, Ian Hickson wrote:

> On Mon, 2 Feb 2009, James Craig wrote:
>>>> If the src attribute is set and the alt attribute is not
>>>> The image is assumed to be a key part of the content, and there is
>>>> no textual equivalent of the image available.
>>> "is assumed" is descriptive phraseology. Whom is it assumed by? Why?
>> Assumed by:
>> 1. User agents, in order to give an appropriate experience to users.
>> 2. Search engines, in order to index appropriate content.
> But what is it in the spec that makes them assume this? It can't be  
> the
> sentence that describes that assumption, since that's a descriptive
> sentence. Hence my wording -- it's the sentence that defines that the
> assumption is ok.
> (Another way of phrasing it could have been "should be assumed", but
> that defines implementation behavior and in this case it was the  
> semantic
> that I was trying to define.)

Perhaps one way to make this clear would be to leave the sentence as  
is, and separately say that user agents either MAY or SHOULD assume  
that such images are a key part of the content lacking a textual  
equivalent. That would leave the definition of the meaning intact and  
clarify what is expected of user agents, while avoiding the ambiguous  
passive voice construction.

Received on Monday, 2 February 2009 23:37:00 UTC

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