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Re: QUESTION: image map alt tags

From: Charles McCathieNevile <charles@w3.org>
Date: Sat, 14 Aug 1999 16:50:16 -0400 (EDT)
To: Marti <marti47@MEDIAONE.NET>
cc: Advanced HTML Discussion List <ADV-HTML@BAMA.UA.EDU>, WAI Interest Group <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.4.10.9908141646200.17310-100000@tux.w3.org>
Where there is no purpose to the image, having to read the fact that they are
there is a real nusciance - particularly for people who are unable to use
images (people who are blind, etc). If an author has provided correct alt
text then it is not so difficult to assume that when they have nothing as
their explicit text it is because they explicitly meant to say nothing.

If you use alt="" to cover up the fact that you haven't bothered to make
something work without images then you deserve to get flamed.

Putting a long description onto images might also be a good practise to help
people believe that you know what you are doing.

Charles McCathieNevile

On Sat, 14 Aug 1999, Marti wrote:

  Just one small point .. using alt="" is something I consider an annoyance!
  It gets the page past automated checks like Bobby but leaves the user
  wondering what they are missing. If you use an alt= please put something in
  between the "", even if it only says alt="space".
  Marti
  
  ----- Original Message -----
  From: Charles McCathieNevile <charles@w3.org>
  To: Advanced HTML Discussion List <ADV-HTML@BAMA.UA.EDU>
  Cc: WAI Interest Group <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
  Sent: Saturday, August 14, 1999 3:34 PM
  Subject: Re: QUESTION: image map alt tags
  
  
  > Sallow,
  >
  > you're not using what is usually called an imagemap, you are using a table
  of
  > individual images which may be links. In many cases there is no alt text,
  > which is a pain.
  >
  > A number of browsers which should have known better have patchy support
  for
  > alt on real imagemaps. Your problem (apart from having lots of images with
  no
  > alt at all) is probably related to the way alt is rendered by some of
  those
  > browsers - typically it is only somtimes put into the space where an image
  > would be, depending on the amount of space it has allocated. Other
  browsers
  > don't have any trouble. I'm afraid there is not a lot you can do in your
  code
  > except to leave sizes unspecified for your images - they should appear
  > unspaced, and you can use basic CSS features such as line-height, together
  > with presentational hacking such as VSPACE="0" HSPACE="0" to achieve the
  same
  > effect without a table, and to have more browsers render the alt text.
  >
  > (I suggest alt="" for the cases where you don't want "imagemap_r3_c1" to
  be
  > rendered everywhere...)
  >
  > Charles McCN
  >
  > On Sat, 14 Aug 1999, David Poehlman wrote:
  >
  >
  >   Date:    Fri, 13 Aug 1999 13:00:26 -0500
  >   From:    Sallow <sallow@twcny.rr.com>
  >   Subject: QUESTION: image map ALT tagsthis again comes from advhtml but
  >   since it concerns us here I thought I'd post it for the gentleman.
  >
  >
  >   hey there-
  >
  >            I am having problems getting the ALT text to appear on my
  >   image
  >   maps.  The image map works as it is suppossed to (all links are good
  >   and
  >   functional) but the alt text will not appear.  I have always had this
  >   problem and have simply assumed it is not possible.
  >
  >            I am an intermediate user, meaning i can write almost
  >   anything
  >   you could want in HTML but my scripting skills are only now being
  >   learned.  The server I am running the page on is Apache (unix).  I
  >   work
  >   from a windows 95 OS or linux redhat (pico editor) depending on where
  >   I
  >   happen to be when I sit dow to write.
  >
  >            the URL to my home page is:
  >
  >   http://www.io.com/~god
  >            the URL to the specific imagemap in question is:
  >
  >
  >   http://www.io.com/~god/warhammer/warhammer.htm
  >
  >   any advise anyone could render would be greatly appreciated, thanks
  >
  >   Sallow
  >   (Dave Brooks)
  >
  >
  > --Charles McCathieNevile            mailto:charles@w3.org
  > phone: +1 617 258 0992   http://www.w3.org/People/Charles
  > W3C Web Accessibility Initiative    http://www.w3.org/WAI
  > MIT/LCS  -  545 Technology sq., Cambridge MA, 02139,  USA
  >
  >
  

--Charles McCathieNevile            mailto:charles@w3.org
phone: +1 617 258 0992   http://www.w3.org/People/Charles
W3C Web Accessibility Initiative    http://www.w3.org/WAI
MIT/LCS  -  545 Technology sq., Cambridge MA, 02139,  USA
Received on Saturday, 14 August 1999 16:50:18 UTC

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