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Fw: Guidelines Implementation

From: Bill Shackleton <shackle@magi.com>
Date: Wed, 23 Jun 1999 18:42:16 -0400
Message-ID: <004201bebdc9$a9013f60$02c8c8c8@webbie>
To: "WAI ER" <w3c-wai-er-ig@w3.org>

>Suggested for discussion:
>ALT="" is NOT allowed.  (This rule is much simpler!)  ALT=" " is
>permissible as an alternative.


I agree with this for a couple of reasons:

1. It takes action to create a space between the quotes (" ") suggesting
intention & attention. In other words, the author probably had to at least
think about what should be included as ALT (assuming that wayward editors
aren't just including the space to simply 'get around' the guidelines). It
takes no (or less) intention to create alt="" which suggests to me that it
should at least be flagged as needing attention.

2. The guideline states: "1.1 Provide a text equivalent for every non-text
element...". A spacer such as a transparent image is a non-text element. A
space IS text. Although splitting hairs, it does literally meet the
requirement of the guideline which is consistent with what I have been
reading in previous notes. The irony is that if the spacer is used to create
space on the page for layout, then a space between the quotes in an ALT *is*
a 'text equivalent'. In other words the alt text 'space' is the text
equivalent for the non-text element - a spacer.


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Received on Wednesday, 23 June 1999 18:40:52 UTC

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