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Re: use of <acronym> in our documents

From: Christophe Strobbe <christophe.strobbe@esat.kuleuven.be>
Date: Wed, 17 Jun 2009 11:56:16 +0200
Message-Id: <>
To: ERT WG <public-wai-ert@w3.org>
Hi Johannes,

At 11:35 17/06/2009, Johannes Koch wrote:
>Shadi Abou-Zahra schrieb:
>>Dear group,
>>During the previous teleconference call we agreed on an approach 
>>for using <acronym> elements in our documents.
>BTW, which definition of acronym do we share? Some people insist on 
>acronyms to be pronouncable words, like RADAR. With this definition, 
>XML and RDF would not be acronyms, while EARL would be one. AIRC, 
>the fuzzy "definition" of acronym in the HTML specs lead to dropping 
>it for XHTML2 and HTML5.

Based on the dictionaries and other reference works I consulted a few 
years ago 
I don't think there is a shared understanding of the term "acronym". 
Some say they that acronyms can be pronounced as a word, some don't 
say anything about pronunciation. If you say that acronyms need to be 
pronounced as a word, you need to add another term, e.g. initialism, 
for the ones that can't be pronounced as a word.

Best regards,


>>#3. Do not markup acronyms where it is already expanded. For 
>>example: "Evaluation and Report Language (<acronym 
>>title="Evaluation and Report Language">EARL</acronym>)..." is 
>>redundant and unnecessary.
>Should we do not markup them, or should we not expand them? EARL is 
>still an acronym and _could_ still be marked like this: 
><acronym>EARL</acronym>. However there may be no use for AT, while 
>there may be other uses.
>Johannes Koch
>Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Information Technology FIT
>Web Compliance Center
>Schloss Birlinghoven, D-53757 Sankt Augustin, Germany
>Phone: +49-2241-142628    Fax: +49-2241-142065

Christophe Strobbe
K.U.Leuven - Dept. of Electrical Engineering - SCD
Research Group on Document Architectures
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Received on Wednesday, 17 June 2009 09:57:07 UTC

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