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RE: multimedia definition

From: Andrew Kirkpatrick <akirkpat@adobe.com>
Date: Fri, 16 Dec 2005 07:42:43 -0800
Message-ID: <53744A0A1D995C459E975F971E17F5643ABF13@namail4.corp.adobe.com>
To: "John M Slatin" <john_slatin@austin.utexas.edu>, "Gregg Vanderheiden" <gv@trace.wisc.edu>, <w3c-wai-gl@w3.org>

If I read you correctly, you're arguing:
(1) that "multimedia" should include any content that uses more than one
media type in a single presentation (e.g., a conventional Web page with
background audio); and

I'm saying that there is a slippery slope in this definition.  I'm also saying that if the reason we're trying to set a definition for multimedia is the be clear about when CC/AD are needed, we should make sure that the definition covers the known cases, and a web page with a audio track _may_ need equivalents. Of course, the only thing that really needs the captions in this example is the audio, but that is the case for all media.  The issue is not really whether audio is in "multimedia" or not, but whether the content requires captions.  The secondary issue for these guidelines is whether the audio can stand alone (thus a transcript is OK) or if a user's overall understanding comes from accessing the audio and the associated non-audio content contemporaneously.

(2) that the proposed definition (without your "and/or") doesn't capture
cases where the media are not "synchronized."

I thnk that 

Here's what I think would be better:
Guideline 1.2 Provide synchronized alternatives for multimedia.
change to 
Guideline 1.2 Provide synchronized alternatives for time-based media (I know I complained about this term recently - retracted!)

1.2.1 Captions are provided for prerecorded audio. (the SC would indicate that this means stand alone audio as well as audio in a combined presentation with other media)
1.2.2 Audio descriptions are provided for prerecorded video.

Level 2 Success Criteria for Guideline 1.2
1.2.3 Real-time captions are provided for live audio. [How to meet 1.2.3]

Level 3 Success Criteria for Guideline 1.2
1.2.4 Sign language interpretation is provided for audio [How to meet 1.2.4]
1.2.5 Extended audio descriptions are provided for prerecorded video. [How to meet 1.2.5]  

I'd love to see the term 'multimedia' extracted completely from this document.  It means too much and too little, and given that the real issue is equivalents for specific, well-defined media types, we should sharpen the focus on those media types instead of trying to encompass everything under an umbrella term.

Received on Friday, 16 December 2005 15:42:10 UTC

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