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Re: Step 1.e: Define the Techniques to be used

From: RichardWarren <richard.warren@userite.com>
Date: Fri, 1 Jun 2012 10:59:01 +0100
Message-ID: <0F3559CF6744435DAE6B6771576B010E@DaddyPC>
To: "Vivienne CONWAY" <v.conway@ecu.edu.au>, "Eval TF" <public-wai-evaltf@w3.org>
Hi Vivienne,

My starting point is the W3C Working Group notes - Understanding SC 2.4.1 

**Specific benefits include -
1) When this Success Criterion is not satisfied, it may be difficult for 
people with some disabilities to reach the main content of a Web page 
quickly and easily.
3) People who use only the keyboard or a keyboard interface can reach 
content with fewer keystrokes. Otherwise, they might have to make dozens of 
keystrokes before reaching a link in the main content area. This can take a 
long time and may cause severe physical pain for some users.

**The example given is
A news organization's home page contains a main story in the middle of the 
page, surrounded by many blocks and sidebars for advertising, searching, and 
other services. There is a link at the top of the page that jumps to the 
main story. Without using this link, a keyboard user needs to tab through 
approximately 40 links to reach the main story; the screen reader user has 
to listen to 200 words; and the screen magnifier user must search around for 
the location of the main body.

**The first sufficient technique is
G1: Adding a link at the top of each page that goes directly to the main 
content area

>From the above it is clear to me that if a website has more than a few 
navigation links it is ***essential***  to use the "skip to" technique. This 
is also backed up by personal experience. To met 2.4.1 we need to provide a 
properly coded link at the top of the page that is visible to keyboard 
users. (it can be hidden from sighted mouse users, but it must appear  when 
"active" or "focus" via the keyboard.) This is not an optional extra. At 
present there is no practical alternative that I know of.

The same applies to long lists, samples of code and ascii art. If a list 
(ol, ul, dl) is very long then I like to see a "skip list" option (various 
ways of doing this).

The above benefits keyboard users AND blind users.

Some AT, such as screen readers, are capable of listing the sematic 
structure (headings, links etc.). For these users an additional benefit is 
provided by correct semantic code. This DOES NOT replace the need for a 
"skip" link. I quote below from WCAG introduction.

"In addition to the sufficient techniques, there are a number of advisory 
techniques that can enhance accessibility, but did not qualify as sufficient 
techniques because they are not sufficient to meet the full requirements of 
the Success Criteria, they are not testable, and/or because they are good 
and effective techniques in some circumstances but not effective or helpful 
in others. These are listed as advisory techniques and are right below the 
sufficient techniques. Authors are encouraged to use these techniques 
wherever appropriate to increase accessibility of their Web pages."

Thus "skip" links is sufficient on it's own whilst semantic structure is 

One final point about 2.4.1 (and many other SC) is that there is provided a 
list of general techniques with an intro that says something like "using one 
of the following techniques". This does not mean that you can use just one 
of the techniques on a page and claim that the whole page is compliant. It 
will depend upon what is on the page. If the page is very simple (say a 
pop-up window with a single phrase message) then, because there are no 
blocks there is no need for any skips at all. On the other hand a long, 
complex page may require all the general techniques being used many many 
times !

That is my thinking - I hope it clarifies rather than confuses


-----Original Message----- 
From: Vivienne CONWAY
Sent: Friday, June 01, 2012 4:37 AM
To: RichardWarren ; detlev.fischer@testkreis.de ; 
alistair.j.garrison@gmail.com ; public-wai-evaltf@w3.org
Subject: RE: Step 1.e: Define the Techniques to be used

Hi Richard
I've actually been having a long debate (they get pretty excited) with the 
IG about this one.  According to WCAG 2, 2.4.1. is met if the ST of a 
correct heading structure is applied.  While I don't agree that having 
headings should be a sufficient technique on its own (due to the fact it 
doesn't help keyboard users), it appears to be set in WCAG 2 that way.  It 
fails 2.4.1 if there are no (working - implied I think) skip links and the 
heading structure is either non-existent or insufficient to bypass repeated 
navigation structures.

Your thoughts?


Vivienne L. Conway, B.IT(Hons), MACS CT, AALIA(cs)
PhD Candidate & Sessional Lecturer, Edith Cowan University, Perth, W.A.
Director, Web Key IT Pty Ltd.
Mob: 0415 383 673

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From: RichardWarren [richard.warren@userite.com]
Sent: Friday, 1 June 2012 1:45 AM
To: detlev.fischer@testkreis.de; alistair.j.garrison@gmail.com; 
Subject: Re: Step 1.e: Define the Techniques to be used

Hi Detlev,

As mentioned before, meeting one individual SC does not mean automatically
meeting the actual guideline subsection. In the case you mention - correct
semantics (headings) can provide a way for blind users to navigate more
easily (incl. skiping blocks). However a sighted keyboard user with a
standard browser does not usually have access to the semantic code in the
way that a screen reader does. So for these users we still need to provide a
"skip" link for long navigation lists at least.

So if "Commissioner says we have implemented skip links to meet 2.4.1 Bypass
Blocks"  then I say great, but you also need to have suitable heading codes
(and possibly something like "skip code samples" if the site is an on-line
course in HTML) so we will check that your site has mechanism/s for
bypassing repetitive blocks and non-informative blocks whilst we are at it
for compliance with guideline 2.4.1.


-----Original Message-----
From: detlev.fischer@testkreis.de
Sent: Thursday, May 31, 2012 4:22 PM
To: alistair.j.garrison@gmail.com ; public-wai-evaltf@w3.org
Subject: Re: Fwd: Step 1.e: Define the Techniques to be used

Hi Alistair, hi all,

Don't know if it is a good idea to answer here since this now goes into the
"Disposition of Comments" but I'll have a go nevertheless.

As I understand it, we need to look for each SC if any of the Sufficient
Techniques (or a set of combined techniques as expressed in the options of
the "How to meet" document) has been suvessfully used. For that, it is not
sufficient to test techniques being put forward by the comissioner.

* Commissioner says "we have implemented skip links to meet 2.4.1 Bypass
* You evaluate and find that for some reason skip links aren't properly
implemented (fail of that technique)
* There is a proper headings structure that meets SC 4.2.1 (or ARIA
landmarks in a context where that is accessibility supported)

Now as long as you don't hit a failure, I guess you woud need to say pass to
the SC even though the technique submitted did not work.
(Having said that, the faulty skip links may fail other SC, but not SC

Any thoughts?


----- Original Message -----
From: alistair.j.garrison@gmail.com
To: public-wai-evaltf@w3.org
Date: 31.05.2012 17:06:52
Subject: Fwd: Step 1.e: Define the Techniques to be used

> Dear All,
> Would it be possible to add my comments about Step 1.e to the comments
> document - http://www.w3.org/WAI/ER/conformance/comments
> Begin forwarded message:
>> From: Alistair Garrison <alistair.j.garrison@gmail.com>
>> Subject: Step 1.e: Define the Techniques to be used
>> Date: 10 May 2012 10:48:41 CEST
>> To: Eval TF <public-wai-evaltf@w3.org>
>> Dear All,
>> "Step 1.e: Define the Techniques to be used" - could we consider making
>> this step non-optional?
>> The first reason being that we really need to check their implementation
>> of the techniques (W3C, their own code of best practice or whatever) they
>> say they use.
>> For example:
>> - Case 1) If they have done something by using technique A, and we
>> evaluate using technique B there could be an issue (they might fail B);
>> - Case 2) If they have done something by using technique A, and we
>> evaluate using technique A and B there still could be an issue (they
>> might fail B);
>> - Case 3) If they have done something by using technique A, and we
>> evaluate using technique A - it seems to work.
>> The second reason being that testing seems only to be really replicable
>> if we know what the techniques were they said they implemented -
>> otherwise, two different teams could easily get two different results
>> based on the cases above.
>> I would be interested to hear your thoughts.
>> Very best regards
>> Alistair

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Received on Friday, 1 June 2012 10:04:00 UTC

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