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[Bug 13814] New: Permit @alt on <area> even when there is no @href attribute

From: <bugzilla@jessica.w3.org>
Date: Thu, 18 Aug 2011 02:40:11 +0000
To: public-html@w3.org
Message-ID: <bug-13814-2495@http.www.w3.org/Bugs/Public/>
http://www.w3.org/Bugs/Public/show_bug.cgi?id=13814

           Summary: Permit @alt on <area> even when there is no @href
                    attribute
           Product: HTML WG
           Version: unspecified
          Platform: Macintosh
               URL: http://dev.w3.org/html5/spec/the-map-element#the-area-
                    element
        OS/Version: Mac System 9.x
            Status: NEW
          Keywords: a11y
          Severity: normal
          Priority: P3
         Component: HTML5 spec (editor: Ian Hickson)
        AssignedTo: ian@hixie.ch
        ReportedBy: xn--mlform-iua@xn--mlform-iua.no
         QAContact: public-html-bugzilla@w3.org
                CC: mike@w3.org, public-html-wg-issue-tracking@w3.org,
                    public-html@w3.org


REQUEST: Make @alt permitted on <area> even when there is no @href attribute.

USECASE: An area of an image map might be in need of alternative text even if
it is not clickable. For example, a link might simply not be available when the
map is created. Or there might be a section of the image that needs alternative
text, without ever becoming a link (for instance because the iamge consists of
two or more images that visually looks like separate images but which, from the
computer's point of view, is a single image).

OTHER JUSTIFICATIONS:

* FIRSTLY: HTML4 had this feature. HTML4 justified it by saying (or rather
*showing*) that <a coords="1,2,3,4" >FOO</a> (that is: an anchor element
without @href) is conceptually equal to an <area nohref coords="1,2,3,4"
alt=FOO > without @href. ( See text to the last code example in HTML4, section
13.6.1.1 <http://www.w3.org/TR/html401/struct/objects.html#h-13.6.1.1>. )

* SECONDLY: HTML5 emphasizes thtat <area> is a link element, just like <a>.
Thus when HTML5 says that an <a> without @href ""represents a  placeholder for
where a link might otherwise have been placed, if it 
had been relevant", it makes sense to say the same thing about an <area>
without @href too. In that regard: HTML5 has not included @coords for the <a>
element - which is yet another reason to make sure that <area> and <a> really
remains conceptually equal also in their ability contain text that is a
*potential link*.

* THIRDLY: There seems to be demand for such a thing:
http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/www-validator/2011Aug/0024.html

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Received on Thursday, 18 August 2011 02:40:15 UTC

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