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Re: Requirements draft - objectivity

From: Detlev Fischer <fischer@dias.de>
Date: Wed, 21 Sep 2011 22:16:19 +0200
Message-ID: <20110921221619.96187bd49soezrwz@webmail.dias.de>
To: public-wai-evaltf@w3.org
Hi everyone,

By now I guess no one will be surprised that I agree with Vivienne  
here. As I have said before, I have yet to see the "100% compliant  
site" (a real CMS-based site out there, not three hand-knitted pages).  
Show me one and I'll be all over it like a truffle pig. Since, as I  
like to maintain, this thing does not exist, a conformance test that  
fails practically every site out there seems kind of pointless to me.

Denis, you use the term 'compliance'. Is there a (perhaps subtle)  
difference between compliance and conformance? (I guess we deal with  
conformance here). To my non-native ear, conformance sounds as if it  
would allow a wee bit more leeway in the sense of 'being not quite  
there, but nearly'. Compliance sounds more forbidding, somehow.


PS: Should you not have felt miffed by my impromptu alt text exercise  
(Carter image), I'd be glad to receive a few more replies to that (I  
have a few already). I forgot to say that will process incoming  
replies anonymously - as I said, the point is not to compete here,  
just to take a practical example of a SC that is kind of hard to do in  
a replicable manner, and get an idea of the variance of ratings based  
on a real world case.

Quoting Denis Boudreau <dboudreau@accessibiliteweb.com>:

> Hi Vivienne,
> On 2011-09-18, at 10:39 PM, Vivienne CONWAY wrote:
>> I think we need a way of demonstrating intent and recognizing  
>> progress.  I'm thinking that a website that is 80% of the way  
>> towards compliance is showing considerable more effort than the one  
>> that is only 10% of the way there.  How to measure this is the  
>> difficult part.  A static web site with limited number of pages and  
>> no multimedia content is going to find it much easier to reach WCAG  
>> 2.0 AAA than a big complex or media-rich site.
> DB: I guess it all depends whether you want to "celebrate  
> accessibility", or "validate compliance".
> When you want to celebrate accessibility. you will be interested in  
> recognizing progress. After all, every little fixes count towards  
> meeting the very general goal that is accessible content.
> When you're concerned about compliance, in my view, you should not  
> care about whether or not people are almost right. they either are,  
> or they're not. So in such a case, being 80% of the way there or  
> only 10% is the same thing. As long as you're not 100% there, it's  
> unacceptable.
> Please do not see this as being dogmatic. It's just that there is no  
> such thing as a percentage of compliance. You either comply or you  
> don't. The closer you are of course, the easier it will be to get  
> there, but until everything is perfect, it just cannot be considered  
> compliant.
> /Denis
>> _______________________________________
>> From: public-wai-evaltf-request@w3.org  
>> [public-wai-evaltf-request@w3.org] On Behalf Of Denis Boudreau  
>> [dboudreau@accessibiliteweb.com]
>> Sent: Monday, 19 September 2011 10:21 AM
>> To: Eval TF
>> Subject: Re: Requirements draft - objectivity
>> Hello all,
>> I think there shouldn't be a problem talking about "objectivity"  
>> when we deal with normalization.
>> After all, standards should be measurable and therefore, objective.  
>> If we feel better using "agreed interpretations" it's all fine by  
>> me because I can relate to that as well.
>> But one way or another, we'll have to come up with these "agreed  
>> interpretations" and that, my friends, based on 10 years or so of  
>> watching divergent accessibility experts expressing different  
>> opinions on the subject, leads me to think it will not be easy! ;p
>> It could probably mean going through all the sufficient techniques  
>> and common failures and, for each and every one of them, come up  
>> with a list of "agreed interpretations" that all actually work out  
>> when common tests are being performed to measure the compliance to  
>> a specific success criteria.
>> Looking forward to *very interesting discussions* here... =)
>> Best,
>> /Denis
>> On 2011-09-14, at 6:09 AM, Detlev Fischer wrote:
>>> DF: Just one point on objective, objectivity:
>>> This is not an easy concept - it relies on a proof protocol. For  
>>> example, you would *map* a page instance tested to a documented  
>>> inventory of model cases to establish how you should rate it  
>>> against a particular SC. Often this is easy, but there are many  
>>> "not ideal" cases to be dealt with.
>>> So "objective" sounds nice but it does not remove the problem that  
>>> there will be cases that do not fit the protocol, at which point a  
>>> human (or group, community) will have to make an informed mapping  
>>> decision or extend the protocol to include the new instance. I  
>>> think "agreed interpretation" hits it nicely because there is the  
>>> community element in it which is quite central to WCAG 2.0 (think  
>>> of defining accessibility support)
>>> Regards,
>>> Detlev
>>>> Comment (KP): I understand the Denis' arguments. The more I think about
>>>> this: neither "unique interpretation" nor "agreed interpretation"  
>>>> work very
>>>> well. I would like to suggest "Objective". Because of the  
>>>> following reason:
>>>> It would be one of Criteria for the quality of tests and includes  
>>>> Execution
>>>> objectivity, Analysis objectivity and Interpretation objectivity.  
>>>> If we will
>>>> have in some cases 100% percent fine, if not we can discuss the  
>>>> "tolerance".
>>>> I would suggest:
>>>> (VC)  I'm still contemplating this one.  I can see both arguments  
>>>> as plausible.
>>>> I'm okay with 'objectivity' but think it needs more explanation  
>>>> i.e. who defines
>>>> how objective it is?
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Detlev Fischer PhD
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Received on Wednesday, 21 September 2011 20:16:54 UTC

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