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Re: FW: Revision to Web Accessibility Policy

From: Kynn Bartlett <kynn-edapta@idyllmtn.com>
Date: Thu, 25 Oct 2001 23:17:30 -0700
Message-Id: <a0510030cb7feaef39265@[]>
To: Anne Pemberton <apembert45@yahoo.com>, w3c-wai-gl@w3.org
At 8:53 PM -0400 2001/10/23, Anne Pemberton wrote:
>The issue is whether you can ever get compliance from
>folks whose motivation and intelligence you negate.

This does fit with my experience, including that of this week when
I gave a two day accessibility training session.  A rules-based approach,
where accessibility is defined by "normative checkpoints", may sit well
with those people who get to make up the rules, but to the people out
there who read this stuff, it really looks like web accessibility is
a matter of tag trivia and slavish devotion to near-incomprehensible
sets of rules.

I always tell people "web accessibility is a state of mind -- it's
a methodology, it's the way you approach how you create your site."

Then they think I was lying to them, when they see the true essense of
accessible web design is whether or not you can check off certain
checkboxes (and technicalities count) -- or at least that's how they
react to WCAG 1.0.

WCAG 1.0 is a "negating" approach, one which says "we've figured it all
out and here's what you do, <check> <check> <check>" which turns web
authors into people who fill out complex surveys they don't understand.
It can be very demotivating, and the general lack of respect we show
to web designers is reflected back by the fact that very few of them
actually _like_ or _value_ WCAG.  It's just something imposed on them,
that makes their job harder.

And that's discouraging, and I hope it's what we're all agreeing to
change as we work on 2.0.  If not then maybe it's time for a new
accessibility standard to replace that of the W3C.


Kynn Bartlett <kynn@reef.com>
Technical Developer Liaison
Reef North America
Accessibility - W3C - Integrator Network
Received on Friday, 26 October 2001 02:58:34 UTC

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