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RE: Adobe And TRACE Launch Enhanced PDF Access Via Email

From: Waddell, Cynthia <cynthia.waddell@ci.sj.ca.us>
Date: Wed, 16 Sep 1998 10:18:41 -0700
To: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org, "'po@trace.wisc.edu'" <po@trace.wisc.edu>
Message-id: <3EC0FC2EAE6AD1118D5100AA00DCD883013D15E7@SJ_EXCHANGE>
The list may be interested to know that the PDF accessibility problem was
one of the driving forces that led to the establishment of the City of San
Jose Web Design Standard in 1996 which is found at

For example, an ADA complaint was filed in my office against the City of San
Jose by a blind City Commissioner (appointed to advise City Council on
disability issues) who needed access to City Council documents.  Our City
Clerk had posted the documents in PDF which prevented assistive computer
technology such as screen readers from accessing the City web site.

Currently, our web accessibility standard requires that if a City department
posts a document in PDF, then the document will also be posted in an
accessible format utilizing ASCII or text HTML.  Exceptions to this
accessibility requirement are those documents depicting information which by
their very nature are graphical, such as street maps, building plan
drawings, and pictorial diagrams.  In addition, all hyperlinks to PDF
documents must include the word "PDF" within the hyperlink description.

As City departments update their pages, they are now implementing the City
Web Design Standard.  As solutions arise to resolve barriers to effective
communication created by new technology, the City Web Design Standards will
be revised.  We welcome all efforts of Adobe and TRACE to improve the PDF
product and understand the benefits of PDF.   However, as long as complex
documents fail to convert to accessible HTML, the management of this issue
for local government will require the standard to remain in place to ensure
non-discriminatory public access to City documents.

As this list can understand, a number of United States State and Federal
laws embody civil right protections for people with disabilities.  For
further information about how the United States Americans with Disabilities
Act of 1990 applies to the internet, please see a short article I wrote at
the request of the American Bar Association based on a law lecture I gave at
Santa Clara University School of Law:
http://www.rit.edu/~easi/law/weblaw1.htm  "Applying the ADA to the Internet:
A Web Accessibility Standard."

Cynthia D. Waddell

Cynthia D. Waddell   Cynthia.Waddell@ci.sj.ca.us
ADA Coordinator       City of San Jose, CA

801 North First Street, Room 460
San Jose, California 95110-1704
(408)971-0134 TTY
(408)277-3885 FAX

> ----------
> From: 	Gregg Vanderheiden
> Reply To: 	po@trace.wisc.edu
> Sent: 	Tuesday, September 15, 1998 5:28 PM
> To: 	w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
> Subject: 	RE: Adobe And TRACE Launch Enhanced PDF Access Via Email
> Hi
> A couple of comments on PDF
> 1) it is NOT as accessible as HTML and probably will never be.  That is
> why
> in the guidelines (latest draft) it states that any material that is
> posted
> in a format other than a W3C format must also be posted in HTML.
> Gregg
> -- ------------------------------
> Gregg C Vanderheiden Ph.D.
> Professor - Human Factors
> Dept of Ind. Engr. - U of Wis.
> Director - Trace R & D Center
> Gv@trace.wisc.edu, http://trace.wisc.edu/
> FAX 608/262-8848
> For a list of our listserves send "lists" to listproc@trace.wisc.edu
> -----Original Message-----
> From:	w3c-wai-ig-request@w3.org [mailto:w3c-wai-ig-request@w3.org] On
> Behalf
> Of David Poehlman
> Sent:	Thursday, September 03, 1998 11:17 AM
> To:	Bruce Bailey
> Cc:	w3c-wai-ig@w3.org; Paul Stauffer 301-827-5694 FAX 301-443-6385;
> Robert
> Neff; T. V. Raman
> Subject:	Re: Adobe And TRACE Launch Enhanced PDF Access Via Email
> three points:
> 1> adobe is committed to the highest level of access possible.
> 2> perhaps there is a middle ground between stomping on people and
> accepting the status quo.
> 3> it is possible to work within the system and effect change and not
> loose heart.
> we may get discouraged from time to time, but I've not lost heart lo these
> many years.  till the time comes...
> let's make the best use of the tools we have both for access and content
> production and let's talk about html xml, web navigation and the host of
> other things that make the web the web and work with people off list on
> the pdf issues.
> Thanks!
> --
> Hands-On-Technolog(eye)s
> touching the internet
> voice: 1-(301) 949-7599
> poehlman@clark.net
> ftp://ftp.clark.net/pub/poehlman
> http://www.clark.net/pub/poehlman
> Dynamic solutions Inc.
> Best of service for your Small Business network Needs
> Http://www.dnsolutions.com
Received on Wednesday, 16 September 1998 13:20:59 UTC

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