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session 2 notes Re: phone notes from Melbourne face to face

From: Charles McCathieNevile <charles@w3.org>
Date: Mon, 12 Nov 2001 21:45:17 -0500 (EST)
To: Jo Miller <jo@bendingline.com>
cc: <w3c-wai-gl@w3.org>
Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.4.30.0111122143140.24390-100000@tux.w3.org>
These are the notes that I took from session 2 this morning.

They are probably not more accurate than Jo's, but complementary.

In theory support not having prorities, but people want them. So they will
start creating them. maybe the idea of retrofitting / from teh start is a
good approach. I am finding a lot of interst in bulding it in, as companies
become aware of the issue - there is still a lot of ignorance. I support the
metadata for people providing details, but we need to have a more visible
elephnat stamp approach of some kind.

Would be keen for an assumptions discussion. Re laundry list, and people
looking for guidance, it is important to make sure that it is difficult to
get it wrong with the tools and languages. That should be long term. In
middle term we should look at getting there as a process, and now we need to
look at getting there from broken things. We shoulld be looking at several
years down teh track rather than right now

need to work out dependencies. There will always be different starting points
and priorities, and we should be clear about who is losing for each one -
maybe we should not write the policies, but identify a few different ones. EO
is working on implementation policies already

Curb cuts, when they were introduced, helped people in wheelchairs, but for
blind folks thhere was no longer a distinction between walking on the
footpath and walking on the road. I strongly favour using a cross-disability
approach. I see temptations arising from client approaches to try and
classify a target market. If we bow to that we will not be doing favours.
People with disabilities have come together to solve the collective problems,
and I don't think we shoulld be trying to factionalise or re-divide them. In
an intranet the users are defined, so some things will be left out - this is
a classic example of a situation where if we serve that need we put barriers
up in the general case.

So in that case a person with a disability (or getting one) faces a higher
barrier in joining. It is also difficult for people who don't want to
identify their disability.

Metadata doesn't do stuff for you. It is only data that can be used. Whether
it is a badge, or a detailed bit of code it is available. The metadat
community talk about metadata as never being finished. There isn't a fixed
quality of "having metadata" - it can be extended and added to and
adjusted... The goals here are how to make the guidelines most effective. I
think it would be usefu to put everything our there and say what is there.

Chaals says there are different starting points - if you start with a
different disability the start would be different. Designers look at their
site and say "where is it most broken?" and start with that.

Most people looking at their websites are doing it because it is good, or
generally helpful to users, but most people I know are doing it becausee
there are a set of rules. If we start talking about disabilities there are tw
problems. 1. People will match consumer groups or perceived targets. 2. If
you only think of one disability you can reduce accessibilty for others.
Lets look for the underlying principles - if you follow those you make things
more accessible. The first guidelines were a patch. Don't do this, do that,
... We have tried to draw out patterns and principles and today we have
guidelines along those lines. I think we are close to where we can give
ourselves some tools. Someone talked about making guidelines that people can
use to do what they need to do. We could say "there are 5 basic principles -
these are the guidelines for achieving XYZ". Then groups can look at those
and see what they can achieve. This group needs to lay out an order for
people to tackle things in - otherwise how does a manager give some

Intranet - it is about convincng the business manager that someone with a
disability will need to do something in the future. One site is an intranet
for scientists who work on communicable diseases - they claim that it is a
prerequisite not to have a disability, in a small group of people. We still
need to convince the people who think they are in a closed world. To convince
them, it is important to highlight how this is relevant for the general
If corporations are going to focus on accessibility a lot of the work goes
into PR and not accessibility itself.
With retrofitting, it might be difficult to write a list of guidelines,
because it depends on the situation.
I keep getting people wanting to minimise the amount of work - any amount is
too hard - give me 3 major things. People will stop at a minimum, so the
minimum needs to be a maximum.

Breaking conformance by disability - is that an open issue?

There is a current consensus that we won't do it, and nobody has sugested we
open it, so it isn't at the moment.

agree that the process of how to fix things is good, but that relies on
knowing what things to fix first, and second on priorities. We are not in a
position to set policies. THEY are. This is not a case of doing it by
disability, just taht there are too many starting points.

/* Loretta leaves

I would like to establish where it seems there is agreement:
We want a good benefits section.
There are dependencies among checkpoints where benefits are only achieved if
some other requirements are also satisfied. We should capture that
Difficulty of implentation is dependent on many "outside" factors. That
doesn't seem to be a useful axis for us to make statements.
The issue of what will become obsolete or possible - we can probably make
reasonably informed statements about that.

So for a checkpoint by chekpoint basis, we can introduce some categories -
perhaps that would be a useful exercise in any event - who benefits, what
checkpoints it depends on, what checkpoints overlap/obsolete, will the
technology change?

Can we categorise what willl change at the checkpoint level?

Well, you did a good job of it recently..

Propose that we start capturing this information this afternoon.

Agree with charles that we need to provide the information, but I don't
necessarily agree with dumping priorities in terms of A, double-A, triple-A.
I think  we might get something like that that will work. If you look at
different groups and provide info about how to make things good for one
group, that raises the possiblity of segregating. Maybe one approach is to
highlight benefits that can be applied to help an identifiable group beyond
(for example) single-A. Provide information about the level of impact for
different groups - e.g. one checkpoint helping several groups, or only one,
at different levels.
Have a "strong compliance" by conforming to single A plus the things that
leverage those single A requirements.

We can't figure out a scheme for situations that works - we aren't the best
people to set policy. We can give them data they don't have - there are
things that we know which the government or manager of a company or site
manage doesn't know. We can allow them to improve the cost-benefit analysis
they are already making

What Cynthia said. There is a tendency to assume resistance and
predisposition to do the bare minimum. By the time WCAG 2 is out there will
be a different situation. Selling the benefits isn't our mission - it is for
EO and for other outside people. Our strength is information and data that
people don't have. Focussing on that will help us get our work done. Get back
to guidelines and success criteria before assigning priorities to

on what Mat said I think the problem with the priority levels is there is no
fair way to take much out of priority one. Having a three level priority
scheme is pretty much impossible because there is so much that belongs in P1.
I think there is a need for an approval stamp somewhere - maybe through

To be a recommendation there does need to be at least one level of

The problem isn't whether there will be one - there must. The question is how
to distinguish if we want more than that.

thinking about the idea that we're not qualified to prioritise guidelines.
First we need to have some humility about what we do and don't know. Second,
let's have lots of people with disabilities involved. Third, there are people
in the bricks and mortar world who have been coming up with ways to
prioritise this kind of stuff and we need to learn from them.
Jakob Nielsen's "beyond alt text" is essential reading on this.

Some groups are making policy anyway, but in other places they aren't.

People in Australia don't want policy rewritten, they maybe want it
interpreted. Maybe we have something based on where you start based on an
audience, cross-referenced with whether it is public, private, disability
service, etc.

I disagree about people not rewriting policies - people don't take on stuff
without rewriting it in their terms. So how do we make it easy for people to
do that and get the results that we are aiming for. There are things that can
be done easily, and it makes people feel good - getting the low-hanging fruit
is good.

How about "you have to do 5 things - choose them". Then say what you did.

This afternoon:
One group will work on providing some of this information by checkpoints. I
don't know that we will make much more progress in this discussion. Tomorrow
morning we will work out what we are doing tomorrow.

Received on Monday, 12 November 2001 21:45:18 UTC

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