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Re: Taking another round at @summary

From: Jeremy Keith <jeremy@adactio.com>
Date: Fri, 8 Jan 2010 00:07:40 +0000
Message-Id: <8A0D39AA-3552-488D-A1A1-FF8EA86AE4AA@adactio.com>
To: HTML WG Public List <public-html@w3.org>
Denis asked:
> What garantee do we have that authors would provide a better, more  
> suitable description for content associated with aria- 
> describedby="table-description" referenced somewhere else in the  
> page with <div id="table-description">This-table-presents-blah-blah- 
> blah...</div> than they already do for a simple description with
> <table summary="this-table-presents-blah-blah-blah..."></table>?

Because invisible data rots (see: <meta> keywords).


That's a crucial difference between @summary and aria-describedby. The  
contents of aria-describedby can be made invisible, if the author  
wishes. The contents of @summary cannot be made visible.

Personally, I think that this distinction that @summary draws between  
users of AT and other users isn't a helpful one. If history has taught  
us anything, it's that accessibility features turn out to be useful  
for everyone (e.g. the invention of the typewriter or closed  
captioning on television).

Jeremy Keith

a d a c t i o

Received on Friday, 8 January 2010 00:08:16 UTC

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