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Re: alt tags - a moot point?

From: Philip Ramsey <jamaican@colis.com>
Date: Thu, 13 Jul 2000 06:43:18 -0400
Message-ID: <396D9D46.8702761F@colis.com>
To: "Benjamin J. Simpson" <bsimpson@arc.nasa.gov>
CC: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Hi Benjamin,

Re Alt tag: "Home", when I learnt HTML at ZDU in the early days
(circa. 1995) I was taught that "Home" referred to the
main/index/start page of a web site. So I will have to agree with
your choice of A1. In the case of linking to Yahoo! we could make
a number of choices of A1 alt="Yahoo!", A2 alt="Yahoo! Search" A3
alt="search" and so on.


> "Benjamin J. Simpson" wrote:
> While updating the accessibility features of a company web
> page, I had a discussion with a coworker on an accessibility
> point.  I'd be interested in hearing the opinions of this
> mailing list on them.  It has to do with creating alt tags.
> Q: What alt tag should a graphic link that represents text
> have?  (ie, home.gif - a gif that is the word 'home')
> A1: The alt tag text is the same as the graphical text.
> (alt="Home")
> A2: The alt tag provides alternative content. The text provides
> a more detail about what the link points at.  (alt="Yahoo's
> home page")
> I support A1, because if I were using Lynx to view the page, I
> would want to see "Home".  Also, I imagine that a person using
> a screenreader would not want to hear the longer alt tag, and
> would also prefer "Home".
> Its a given that "Home" could be taken out of context on Lynx
> or a screenreader. By that I mean that the user would not know
> what home page the "Home" link pointed to.  However, if that
> was the case, it is likely that the graphic would also be
> misunderstood.  As such, if one version is in danger of being
> misinterpreted, then both are.  In that situation, the graphic
> should be changed to read "Yahoo's Home Page", in addition to
> the text.
> I do admit that exceptions should be made, but as a general and
> attempted practice, programmers should keep the alt tag of a
> graphic the same as the graphic's words.
> What do you think?
> Thank you for your time,
> Benjamin J. Simpson
> Education Associate, Web Development Group
> NASA Ames Research Center
> email: bsimpson@mail.arc.nasa.gov
> (650) 604-3292

Philip Ramsey | Subscribe to my newsletters @
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Received on Thursday, 13 July 2000 09:34:00 UTC

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