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Re: visibility of 'skip links'

From: David Poehlman <poehlman1@comcast.net>
Date: Tue, 21 May 2002 07:48:43 -0400
To: Tina Marie Holmboe <tina@elfi.org>, Jim Thatcher <jim@jimthatcher.com>
Cc: "Scarlett Julian (ED)" <Julian.Scarlett@sheffield.gov.uk>, w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Message-id: <000701c200bd$75c7ea10$91e03244@DAVIDPOEHLMAN>
I'm not sure what the normal rules for quoting are, and I have no
quarrel with a link that provides a way to march to a particular part of
a page.  I do however take issue with its miss use as the only way to
full fill a requirement when there are many ways of achieving this even
with small devices.  When I learned html, one of the things I learned
was how to mark up a long page so that points of interest could be
gotten to rapidly.  This was before wcag and before 508.  It was done in
the natural markup and in such a way as to not impeed anyone from seeing
or getting to any point of interest on the page.  I know that we are
"way beyond" html at this point but I fail to see why it is necessary to
continue to build pages without good structure and then to cludge them
and to take this as a requirement to do so.  The requirement does not
say "use a skip nav link", It says to "provide a mechanism for allowing
a user to navigate the page without the necessity of wading through it".
This of course is a paraphrase in both instances but the intent is clear
and the intent is not to say, Oh well, Oh, My,  I've got this beautiful
page or I have this great design so I'll just put this invisible link
here so as not to confuse most of my users so that those using screen
readers and other devices can "use" my pages.  The skip nav link often
throws me somewhere in the midst of a page from which I then have to
orient myself.

----- Original Message -----
From: "Tina Marie Holmboe" <tina@elfi.org>
To: "Jim Thatcher" <jim@jimthatcher.com>
Cc: "Scarlett Julian (ED)" <Julian.Scarlett@sheffield.gov.uk>;
Sent: Tuesday, May 21, 2002 6:43 AM
Subject: Re: visibility of 'skip links'

On Mon, May 20, 2002 at 06:08:19PM -0500, Jim Thatcher wrote:

> removes guesswork. The skip link has nothing to do with keyboard
access - it
> is for blind access. If you can see the screen you can tab (very

  I would like to add that a 'skip to main content' link is not
  in the realm of access for visually impaired people. If the screen of
  device used for 'surfing' is very small and the list of links very
  then a skip-link suddenly becomes a lifesaver.

  This may not fall fully in the realm of "accessibility for the
  but also in the "accessibility for devices upon where 15 links
  constitute 3-4 full screens"

  In addition .. may I, in the name of accessibility, request that we
  adopt the normal rules of quoting for this list ?

 -    Tina Holmboe                    Greytower Technologies
   tina@greytower.net                http://www.greytower.net/
   [+46] 0708 557 905
Received on Tuesday, 21 May 2002 07:49:20 UTC

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