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Re: single browser intranets

From: David Poehlman <poehlman@clark.net>
Date: Tue, 26 Oct 1999 16:53:34 -0500
Message-ID: <381622DE.499C4B9D@clark.net>
To: Claude Sweet <sweetent@home.com>
CC: Al Gilman <asgilman@iamdigex.net>, W3c-wai-ig@w3.org
if they can make it at all, they can make it accessible.  we'll accept
no more excuses.
Claude Sweet wrote:
> 
> Al,
> 
> Do your comments apply if the following conditions exist:
> 
> 1. A small, moderately capitalized company what to establish an Intranet
> 2. None of the existing employee's have any disabilities
> 
> Is it realistic to expect small companies to expend a large percentage
> of
> its resources on a solution for which there isn't an existing problem?
> 
> I believe most companies will allocate their resources to expand their
> business
> opportunities, maximizing market potential for existing products, and
> funding new
> product research.
> 
> These companies do not have "deep pockets" to do the planning that
> ideally
> takes place in Fortune 500 companies.
> 
> In the business world decisions are frequently based on short term
> goals.
> Remaining in business takes immediate precedent over lofty goals of 5
> and
> 10 year plans.
> 
> Claude Sweet
> Educational Technologist
> 
> Al Gilman wrote:
> > One magnitude that I don't see anyone addressing in business-credible terms
> > is the curb cut effect for universal design of internal web communications.
> >  Doing the up-front homework to design the intranet practices for any
> > browser, or for WAI compliance, will result in intranet content which is
> > _more_ effective communication with _all_ employees, totalled across the
> > employee population without regard for disability.  It is not just that you
> > won't lose effectiveness, you will gain.  Making the words tell the story
> > independent of the pictures, and the pictures tell the story independent of
> > the words, will reduce employee time spent and error rate in extracting
> > information from the intranet.  But I don't know how much.  I would really
> > love to see Pugh or Arthur Andersen Consulting or somebody with credibility
> > among the readers of the Wall Street Journal attempt to measure the
> > cost-benefit curve for this effect.
> >
> > This gain in communication effectiveness is the major economic incentive
> > for the employer, not the threat of lawsuits.  Employers can play the law
> > game very effectively against employees because of the increasing returns
> > to scale in lawyer-buying.
> >
> > Businesses implementing intranets need to realize that the Web is an infant
> > industry, and Best Commercial Practice (a.k.a. what the market will bear)
> > is not really very good yet.  If they want to play smart and get ahead of
> > the curve they will use the WCAG in an internal communications quality
> > program and have a happier, better informed and better bonded workforce.
> > And business (to read the WSJ) generally understands that that is an
> > enterprise asset worth investing in.
> >
> > Al

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Received on Tuesday, 26 October 1999 16:54:05 GMT

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