W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-wai-evaltf@w3.org > September 2012

Think 3.1.4 needs to be reconsidered, at least for sites that have more than one web team.

From: David MacDonald <david100@sympatico.ca>
Date: Fri, 21 Sep 2012 00:22:23 -0400
Message-ID: <BLU0-SMTP25746BC4D889BE9AD2CD55FE990@phx.gbl>
To: <public-wai-evaltf@w3.org>
Regarding requiring an entire site to have identical accessibility support.
( 3.1.4 "Accessibility support must be uniform throughout a single
<http://www.w3.org/WAI/ER/conformance/ED-methodology-20120904#website>
website") 

 

I do not think this should be a *requirement* of this methodology (using the
words "needs to" or "must" etc.)... I'm thinking specifically of Governments
who are eagerly anticipating applying this methodology to large department
web sites. Here are the problems I see with this requirement.

 

1) I think requiring identical AT support across a large site is a very
liberal interpretation of the intent of WCAG. 

 

2) It's almost impossible to do on a large site: The logistics of making
1,000,000 pages, 1000 applications, 20 web teams, 5 accessibility
consultancy firms external, and 10 internal accessibility teams all have the
exact same results across all AT is very difficult, and not necessarily
desirable, although for smaller sites it certainly a worthy goal. 

 

3) It could also negatively affect between testing tools, and consultancies.
Policy may interpret this clause to dictate one corporate evaluation tool
the winner, and one consultancy to do all of the contracts within a
department ... this could create a monopoly situation and increased prices
of accessibility. It could be more difficult for different web groups within
the site to solicit quotes from 3 or 4 competitors... 

 

4) It could negatively affect the way we test... sometimes I'll have one
tester do one part of the site with a set of tools, and another tester have
slight variations on those i.e., a different screen reader, or different OS,
or version of browser etc... I wouldn't want their results to be invalid...
I actually want the variation 

 

So to me the whole issue of *mandating* uniform AT support across a site is
problematic ... even though on the surface it's a worthy ideal to recommend.
I think it is sufficient that they all pass WCAG, not that they all pass
WCAG with the same exact version of the same tools, OS, and browser
combinations...

 

 

 

Cheers

David MacDonald

 

CanAdapt Solutions Inc.

  "Enabling the Web"

www.Can-Adapt.com <http://www.can-adapt.com/> 

 
Received on Friday, 21 September 2012 04:22:58 GMT

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