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Guideline 11 Interpretation

From: Larry G. Hull <Larry.G.Hull@gsfc.nasa.gov>
Date: Fri, 15 Dec 2000 10:54:20 -0500
Message-Id: <a05010402b65fe2a205fb@[]>
To: "Bailey, Bruce" <Bruce_Bailey@ed.gov>
Cc: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org

While I fully agree with your point, PDF documents can indeed be a 
problem and an HTML equivalent is highly desirable, I don't 
personally interpret Guideline 11 as requiring HTML equivalents of 
online PDF documents for two reasons.

(1) The Guidelines address page accessibility.

(2) Guideline 11 specifically addresses converting documents (from 
PDF, PostScript, RTF, etc.) to W3C markup languages (HTML, XML), 
i.e., to one or more pages.

I think the wording in the Note is a bit misleading and that the 
first sentence of the Note might be reworded (one word actually) to 
agree with the rest of the paragraph. I'd prefer: "Converting 
documents (from PDF, PostScript, RTF, etc.) to W3C markup languages 
(HTML, XML) does not always create an accessible page."

Perhaps I'm overlooking something here but I can't see requiring an 
online PDF document, that may in fact owned by someone else and 
located on his server, to be converted anymore than requiring all 
relevant external Web pages owned by others to be accessible before 
providing links to those pages.

Sure I want those pages to be accessible but if those pages are not 
under my control....

Copyright also needs to be considered. What if an online PDF document 
isn't my document or in the public domain? I don't think it is legal 
to convert someone else's  PDF document to W3C markup languages 
(HTML, XML) and make it publicly available.

I'm not a lawyer and these are only my personal opinions. Perhaps I'm 
reading too much into this comment?

Regardless, I'd like to see some additional discussion and clarification.

Larry G. Hull
Greenbelt, Maryland

At 9:13 AM -0500 12/15/00, Bailey, Bruce wrote in RE: Slashdot:  How 
should Govt sites be designed?:
>How does a site claiming Single-A compliance justify a high level link to
>Adobe Acrobat Reader?  I did not come across any PDF documents, but lack of
>HTML equivalents would be a violation of Guideline 11.
Received on Friday, 15 December 2000 10:54:23 UTC

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