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Re: Why I don't attend the weekly teleconference (Was: Input on the agenda)

From: David Singer <singer@apple.com>
Date: Mon, 29 Jun 2009 16:10:05 +0100
Message-Id: <p0624083ec66e87ee8ead@[]>
To: Shelley Powers <shelley.just@gmail.com>
Cc: public-html@w3.org
At 9:42  -0500 29/06/09, Shelley Powers wrote:
>  >
>>  There is a clear concern on this list, supported by some data, that
>>  'summary' is so polluted in practice that no-one who needs accessibility
>>  would ever bother looking at its value, which means in turn that no-one
>>  interested in supporting accessibility would bother putting data there
>>  because their constituency won't notice it.  If this is true, summary may be
>  > irrecoverably polluted.  We need to know if there is evidence to the
>>  contrary.
>Concern, yes. But not scientific study, which is what is claimed to
>support a specific set of actions taken for that concern.
>Wouldn't another set of actions be a stronger clarification in the
>HTML 5 specification about how the attribute is to be used? Isn't that
>just as viable an action to take based on the concern?

If the hypothesis is that summary is "irrecoverably polluted", which 
is what I wrote, then clarification of how we'd hoped it would have 
been used instead, is rather backwards-looking, isn't it?

>  > I think this lies behind some suggestions that we make accessibility 'work'
>>  from design aspects that everyone can perceive and verify, so that web
>>  authors are more likely to 'get it right'.  So, far from trying to make
>>  accessibility invisible, it's an attempt to make it not a ghetto, but a
>>  normal aspect of everyday design.  But it does lead to a situation where you
>>  can no longer point and say "see, this attribute is purely for
>>  accessibility, ergo, we support accessibility".
>>  --
>Again, that is one solution, but it completely abrogates the purpose
>behind summary,

No, I am hypothesizing a solution which is equally or more effective 
for the user, and more likely to be authored and verified as the 
non-accessibility-needing also use and verify the data.  Whether such 
a solution exists, i do not know, but it only "completely abrogates 
the purpose" if the purpose was to provide a unique talisman rather 
than a solution.

>Regardless, I would appreciate that my arguments are seen as genuine

It would be better if we all attacked the arguments and provided 
supporting data, yes.

>More so, I do believe that I have asked questions and
>expressed concerns that have not been addressed,

I have heard the concern that something you clearly cherish is being 
considered for replacement; more than that is difficult to perceive. 
It may be that your tone is obscuring your message, perhaps.

David Singer
Multimedia Standards, Apple Inc.
Received on Monday, 29 June 2009 15:12:14 UTC

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