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Re: empty alt tags

From: Al Gilman <asgilman@iamdigex.net>
Date: Wed, 15 Aug 2001 15:39:27 -0400
Message-Id: <200108151921.PAA5498964@smtp2.mail.iamworld.net>
To: <mpodd@iqnetcom.com>, <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
At 03:52 PM 2001-08-15 , Michelle Podd wrote:
>Can anyone tell me the purpose for using empty alt tags for unessential
>images like spacer gifs?
>In researching accessible web design, I came across this recommendation but
>could not find an explaination for it.

The basic reason is that if you don't use alt="" where appropriate, you are
putting gratuitous speed bumps in the way of the speech user.  You are taking
the listener's attention to say an ALT that provides no information of any
actual value.  Not that these are outright barricades, but they dilute the
value and degrade the experience of the web thereby.

In your research, did you go to Google and search on "ALT text"?

I believe that Alan Flavell's note in this regard

 ALT texts in IMG

can be considered the standard reference on this question.  It comes up first
in Google, it makes sense, etc.

In other words, yes, this is a FAQ -- it's been answered many times.  The best
FAQ answer service on accessibility questions that I know at the moment is a
Google search.  It's just too good.  Human editors can't keep up.


>Thanks in advance.
>Michelle Podd
Received on Wednesday, 15 August 2001 15:21:39 UTC

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