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Discussion of 11.4

From: Wendy A Chisholm <wendy@w3.org>
Date: Mon, 24 Jan 2000 14:06:35 -0500
Message-Id: <>
To: w3c-wai-er-ig@w3.org
I took an action during today's telecon to summarize our discussion 
of  WCAG 11.4 so that we could continue it on the list.

The minutes are available at [1].

WCAG checkpoint 11.4 reads:
11.4 If, after best efforts, you cannot create an accessible page, provide 
a link to an alternative page that uses W3C technologies, is accessible, 
has equivalent information (or functionality), and is updated as often as 
the inaccessible (original) page. [Priority 1]
Techniques for checkpoint 11.4
Note. Content developers should only resort to alternative pages when other 
solutions fail because alternative pages are generally updated less often 
than "primary" pages. An out-of-date page may be as frustrating as one that 
is inaccessible since, in both cases, the information presented on the 
original page is unavailable. Automatically generating alternative pages 
may lead to more frequent updates, but content developers must still be 
careful to ensure that generated pages always make sense, and that users 
are able to navigate a site by following links on primary pages, 
alternative pages, or both. Before resorting to an alternative page, 
reconsider the design of the original page; making it accessible is likely 
to improve it for all users.

"accessible page" is defined as:
Content is accessible when it may be used by someone with a disability.

There were a number of issues:
1.  When does a person receive a message about providing an alternative 
page?  Is it only after they have not satisfied all P1 checkpoints, or all 
P1 and P2?  OR, do people start out by saying, "I want to reach X level of 
conformance" and if they do not meet all of the checkpoints associated with 
that level then they are given the alternative page option as a suggestion?

2.  What are some automatic checks that we can perform to determine if a 
page as been identified as an alternative page is up to date?  if it is 
truly an equivalent alternative page?  One suggestion is to check that all 
of the links on the inaccessible page available on the alternative 
page.  Others?

3. What action do we take if we identify/verify that an alternative page 
exists?  Do we suggest that they eliminate it since we prefer they try to 
make a single accessible page?  Do we analyze it to make sure it is 
equivalent?    Some feel it is a red flag indicating a "cop-out" in some 
sense. Depending on the situation, an alternative page (or set of 
alternative pages) is reasonable.  The unfortunate example is when a 
designer has created a whole site with Flash.  The only alternative that we 
are aware of is a set of alternative pages.

4.  We also discussed using nested OBJECT elements (with text content as 
the inner-most nest) depending on what type of object was being included.


[1] http://www.w3.org/WAI/ER/IG/minutes/20000124.html
wendy a chisholm
world wide web consortium
web accessibility initiative
madison, wi usa
tel: +1 608 663 6346
Received on Monday, 24 January 2000 14:05:01 UTC

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