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Re: for content review: Involving Users in Evaluating Web Accessibility

From: Sailesh Panchang <sailesh.panchang@deque.com>
Date: Fri, 16 Sep 2005 16:40:46 -0400
Message-ID: <008101c5bafe$eae9d660$a701a8c0@deque.local>
To: "EOWG \(E-mail\)" <w3c-wai-eo@w3.org>


"Include as broad a variety of users with different disabilities as you can,
and avoid the pitfall of only including people who are blind."
 As noted in the Change log, "involve" is better than include.
About including people who are blind:
There is research that indicates that vision impaired and blind users are
the most challenged of Web surfers because of the highly visual nature of
Web content.[1] Task completion rates are low and times  required is high
for these users. So the sample of PWD might include more of these users.
Blind users depend on both adaptations : keyboard for input and text output
through speech/Braille. Catering for accessibility needs of blind users
solves access problems of some other PWD groups as well. This is noted in
WCAG 1 too: "each accessible design choice generally benefits several
disability groups". Therefore testing with blind users might uncover larger
number of accessibility barriers than testing with any other group. So I
caution against saying"pitfall of only including people who are blind".  The
word "only" is the key here and I am afraid ifthe document user
interprets"blind user" as the key words in this statement, it will be to the
detriment of     blind testers / accessibility  enthusiasts.
[1] Disabled Users and The Web


Sailesh Panchang
Senior Accessibility Engineer
Deque Systems (www.deque.com)
11180 Sunrise Valley Drive, Suite #400
Reston VA 21091
E-mail: sailesh.panchang@deque.com
Tel: 703-225-0380 (ext 105)
Received on Friday, 16 September 2005 20:49:57 UTC

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