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Working Group Decision on ISSUE-109 aria-section-title

From: Sam Ruby <rubys@intertwingly.net>
Date: Mon, 07 Mar 2011 16:39:50 -0500
Message-ID: <4D7550A6.8070905@intertwingly.net>
To: HTML WG <public-html@w3.org>
The decision follows.  The chairs made an effort to explicitly address
all arguments presented in the Change Proposals on this topic in
addition to arguments posted as objections in the poll.

*** Question before the Working Group ***

There is a basic disagreement in the group as to the accuracy of the 
section title and subsequent text describing ARIA.  The result was an
issue, two change proposals, and a straw poll for objections:

http://www.w3.org/html/wg/tracker/issues/109
http://www.w3.org/html/wg/wiki/ChangeProposals/ariasection
http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-html/2010Jul/0051.html
http://www.w3.org/2002/09/wbs/40318/issue-109-objection-poll/results

== Objections found

In one case there were a range of objections including inconsistency,
implication of the requirements being non-normative, browsers not
distinguishing whether assistive technology is present or not, a desire
to encourage innovation, obscurity, lack of detail, unfounded assertion
that ARIA has very little name recognition, and more.

In the other case, we can only find a single objection: "is not the
place of the HTML spec to assert things about what the ARIA spec may or
may not require".  This is an assertion rather than an objection, but
could be considered a valid objection if it were true.  But as another
response points out, "The current ARIA in HTML5 section already does
this 6 instances of [such assertions] ... What is different about this
particular instance?".

Indeed, a quick scan of the spec identifies quite a number of other
assertions about what other specs say.  A few samples:

  * When parsing a CSS value, user agents are required by the CSS
    specifications to apply some error handling rules

  * The HTTP specification requires that 301, 302, and 307 redirects,
    when applied to methods other than the safe methods, not be followed
    without user confirmation. That would be an appropriate prompt for
    the purposes of the requirement in the paragraph above

  * The XML specification also allows the use of the xml:space attribute
    in the XML namespace on any element in an XML document.

As such statements have not been proven to be a significant source for
bug reports in the past, we find that the assertion on which this
objection is predicated upon represents a belief that is not widely
shared by working group.  As such this objection is not considered to
have any weight.

*** Decision of the Working Group ***

Therefore, the HTML Working Group hereby adopts the "Change the title of
the WAI-ARIA section of the HTML5 spec and provide advice about ARIA
scope" Change Proposal.  Of the Change Proposals before us, this one has
drawn the weaker objections.

== Next Steps ==

Since the prevailing Change Proposal does call for a spec change, the
editor is hereby directed to make the changes in accordance to the
change proposal.  Once these changes are made and verified, ISSUE-109 is
to be marked as CLOSED.

== Appealing this Decision ==

If anyone strongly disagrees with the content of the decision and would
like to raise a Formal Objection, they may do so at this time. Formal
Objections are reviewed by the Director in consultation with the Team.
Ordinarily, Formal Objections are only reviewed as part of a transition
request.

== Revisiting this Issue ==

This issue can be reopened if new information come up. Examples of
possible relevant new information include:

* systematic removal of all assertions about what other specifications
   require from the HTML5 draft.
Received on Monday, 7 March 2011 21:40:21 UTC

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