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Re: Action Item: 3.3 Proposal (Writing Style)

From: Anne Pemberton <apembert@erols.com>
Date: Tue, 13 Mar 2001 07:04:40 -0500
Message-Id: <>
To: Kynn Bartlett <kynn-edapta@idyllmtn.com>
Cc: w3c-wai-gl@w3.org

       A site that is poorly written may or may not be "inaccessible" ...
but when the writing is so inappropriate that its "inaccessible" to the
audience, it should come under the umbrella we are supposed to be
providing. Why? Because our mission is to serve people with disabilities,
and those with disabilities that affect reading are a large segment of the
disabled population. If we cannot craft checkpoints to enable their use of
web sites, we have failed our mission no matter how many sites use fancy
semantics that don't deliver the goods.


At 06:56 PM 3/12/01 -0800, Kynn Bartlett wrote:
>At 03:22 PM 3/12/2001 , Anne Pemberton wrote:
>>         I understand your point, but the other side of the coin burns. A
few weeks
>>ago I was in a heated discussion with a webmaster of a government services
>>site. He maintained that his web site is "accessible" even tho the audience
>>of the web site is unemployed disabled persons who have graduated high
>>school or have a strong chance to do so. The site is written at a 12th
>>grade reading level, which is way too high for the audience. The site of
>>course is devoid of any illustrations, mark-up, or any reading aids. Yet,
>>the site is, by guidelines 1.0 P1, "accessible" ... 
>Then it's a poorly written web site.  It's one that doesn't know
>how to write for its audience.  And it violates a lot of OTHER
>checkpoints other than just "write well" in the draft WCAG 2.0.
>Is it an accessibility error if I am writing a page for Americans
>and I write it in German?  No, it's really a case of content written
>poorly, no matter what the medium, without any regard for the
>>         Don't throw out the checkpoint.
>Why not?
>You described a specific page written for a specific audience,
>which does not take into account that audience's needs.  That does
>not extrapolate to a general rule, and when we are writing
>checkpoints, we are writing general rules.
>Kynn Bartlett <kynn@reef.com>
>Technical Developer Liaison
>Reef North America
>Tel +1 949-567-7006
Anne Pemberton

Received on Tuesday, 13 March 2001 07:00:18 UTC

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