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Re: Fw: Checkpoint 3.3

From: Charles McCathieNevile <charles@w3.org>
Date: Fri, 16 Jul 1999 06:26:08 -0400 (EDT)
To: Robert Neff <robneff@home.com>
cc: IG <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>, w3c-wai-eo@w3.org, Web Content Accessibility Guidelines <w3c-wai-gl@w3.org>
Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.4.10.9907160620260.22614-100000@tux.w3.org>
Robert, I don't think you need to worry quite so much.

The guidelines state "use CSS to control layout and presentation". This means
it is possible to create a page which does not use any particular
presentation control (which is what I normally do) and to attach a stylesheet
which provides safe styling if you want. It is also possible to do this for
the "text-only" version - actually, a text-only version is not a very good
solution to accessibility, since the requirement is for an accessible
version, and in many cases the images, audio, and other interesting features
are actually part of the page's accessibility features, and need a mechanism
to transform gracefully.

As an example, a piece of music which is played is accessible to a blind
person using any common audio player (it is fairly easy to have one connected
to Lynx) and a text-only version is likely to remove access to that audio.

Charles McCN

On Fri, 16 Jul 1999, Robert Neff wrote:

  I do not doubt the CSS's usability.  I question why I am being forced to use
  CSS to obtain a Double A conformance level.  I can make a web page that is
  accessible using HTML 3.2 and 4.  Before the recommendation, I had done that
  at Department of Labor before CSS was widely used, see
  http://www.dol.gov/dol/esa/public/programs/dbra/index.html.  I had designed
  a layout without tables for formatting and in HTML 4 Transitional.  This was
  the closest thing to adopting over 90% of the checkpoints.  BUT I used HTML
  not  CSS.  If I were still there, I would be livid about Checkpoint 3.3.
  Now all of a sudden I have to switch because another language is wanted.
  CSS has design guidelines and so does HTML and both must be properly
  I cannot support a recommendation that disallows other methodologies that
  can be made accessible.
  By the way, how does Checkpoint 3.3 apply when I want to make a HTML page
  that is text only and use HTML 3.2 with no deprecated items and follow the
  rest of the guidelines except Checkpoint 3.3? For example, except for
  Checkpoint 3.3, I am Triple A.  This is like telling me I MUST purchase a
  new car when an used one will do!
  This is a note to Jamie (Are you monitoring?): Now that you are running the
  Davis-Bacon site, if it wasn't for checkpoint 3.3, how close are you to
  Triple A conformance?
  Basically, my position is the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG)
  should change Checkpoint 3.3 to say, "Use CSS where possible."  If you have
  not read the WCAG yet, then wake-up and realize that you will be required to
  use CSS to obtain a Double A conformance rating.  If you are associated with
  the United States Government then expect the Federal Government to adopt the
  WCAG next year.  Does anyone have any comments on this?  Your opinions do
  Are there any other government efforts or other efforts to adopt Double A?

--Charles McCathieNevile            mailto:charles@w3.org
phone: +1 617 258 0992   http://www.w3.org/People/Charles
W3C Web Accessibility Initiative    http://www.w3.org/WAI
MIT/LCS  -  545 Technology sq., Cambridge MA, 02139,  USA
Received on Friday, 16 July 1999 06:26:11 UTC

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