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Re: PaperSmart paperless UN meetings use of W3C endorsed formats only drawing fire

From: ProjectParadigm-ICT-Program <metadataportals@yahoo.com>
Date: Thu, 14 Jun 2012 14:49:10 -0700 (PDT)
Message-ID: <1339710550.45183.YahooMailNeo@web113820.mail.gq1.yahoo.com>
To: Heiko Hornung <heix.msg@gmx.com>, "semantic-web@w3.org" <semantic-web@w3.org>
Cc: "public-lod@w3.org" <public-lod@w3.org>
Heiko,

The PaperSmart environment is actually a closer user group as delegates attending such meetings are given accounts to be able to access the group documents.

If I want to have access to these documents in e.g.a format that I can read on my ebook reader, and that for many around the world would not be a fancy Samsung/Apple/other brand tablet, but a simple ebook reader, we are left in the cold because PDF and .epub and such were not specified emphatically as endorsed formats.

It seems that the very definition of what constitutes open access is at the center of this issue.

 
Milton Ponson
GSM: +297 747 8280
PO Box 1154, Oranjestad
Aruba, Dutch Caribbean
Project Paradigm: A structured approach to bringing the tools for sustainable development to all stakeholders worldwide by creating ICT tools for NGOs worldwide and: providing online access to web sites and repositories of data and information for sustainable development

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________________________________
 From: Heiko Hornung <heix.msg@gmx.com>
To: semantic-web@w3.org; ProjectParadigm-ICT-Program <metadataportals@yahoo.com> 
Cc: "public-lod@w3.org" <public-lod@w3.org> 
Sent: Thursday, June 14, 2012 5:40 PM
Subject: Re: PaperSmart paperless UN meetings use of W3C endorsed formats only drawing fire
 
Milton,

I think the focus here is on accessibility. While it is possible to create 
accessible PDF files, the procedure is far from trivial. Regarding MS-Office 
files, the situation seems even more complicated, considering that not everyone 
hast access to MS products and viewing these files in libreoffice, etc. might not 
render everything in a way a screen reader or other assistive technology can 
handle.
Maybe producing accessible HTML (if that's the format they'll be using) is 
simpler/cheaper/faster to produce (for the people involved in 
editing/publishing the documents).

Best regards,
Heiko

On Thursday, June 14, 2012 14:05:09 ProjectParadigm-ICT-Program wrote:
> Dear All
> 
> The upcoming Rio +20 Conference (www.uncsd2012.org) will be utilising
> PaperSmart, see papersmart.un.org to eliminate the use of paper.
> 
> However the conference is not using generally accepted industry standards
> such as DOC or PDF for paperless documents.
> 
> On the webpage http://papersmart.un.org/commitments we find the following
> text
> 
> 
> The ISPS Mission on Accessibility
> We, at the
> Integrated Sustainable PaperSmart Services (ISPS) Secretariat, are
> committed to making our portal as well as information available on it
> accessible. We strongly believe in making information usable for
> ‘everyone,’ especially when digital information becomes the only crucial
> means of accessing information by persons with disabilities. Every effort
> has been made to comply with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG
> 2.0) developed by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) standards under the
> Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI).
> ISPS will
> make reasonable efforts to provide or recommend alternatives wherever
> non-compliant, non-W3C formats (Flash, PDF etc.) or multimedia will be
> used.
> 
> When we contacted the Secretariat we were informed very bluntly this is a
> PaperSmart meeting and we do not use ANY Word Office or Adobe PDF formats.
> They did not specify which formats were supported.
> 
> This issue is drawing fire from many civil society areas as restricting open
> access to documents available during this and other UN meetings and not
> endorsing industry standards.
> 
> The real cause for concern is the way the mention of W3C in this context can
> be construed in an unfavorable form.
> 
> The World Wide Web and Semantic Web Technologies specify specific standards
> but in practice internet browsers support a myriad of industry standards.
> 
> It seems that the PaperSmart program of the UN is putting a new spin on how
> we should have access to documents through the internet and it is not being
> well received by many.
> 
> 
> I wonder if the W3C is really aware of this issue and how it may affect the
> image of the W3C .
> 
>  
> Milton Ponson
> GSM: +297 747 8280
> PO Box 1154, Oranjestad
> Aruba, Dutch Caribbean
> Project Paradigm: A structured approach to bringing the tools for
> sustainable development to all stakeholders worldwide by creating ICT tools
> for NGOs worldwide and: providing online access to web sites and
> repositories of data and information for sustainable development
> 
> This email and any files transmitted with it are confidential and intended
> solely for the use of the individual or entity to whom they are addressed.
> If you have received this email in error please notify the system manager.
> This message contains confidential information and is intended only for the
> individual named. If you are not the named addressee you should not
> disseminate, distribute or copy this e-mail.
Received on Thursday, 14 June 2012 21:49:41 UTC

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