W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > w3c-wai-ig@w3.org > April to June 2002

RE: place-holding characters in form elements

From: Scarlett Julian (ED) <Julian.Scarlett@sheffield.gov.uk>
Date: Thu, 23 May 2002 11:23:43 +0100
Message-ID: <F9BE3B1AB649D311A573009027852E4D01E349F9@EDUC_MXS>
To: "'w3c-wai-ig@w3.org'" <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
> (You mean Guideline 10.4. (It is at priority level 3.))

Oops, yes I did mean that. Sorry.

I think I may have misunderstood something here. I was (am) under the
impression that whatever I, as an author, decide to put in a text area to
designate it's intended use  is the actual place-holding characters. Jukka's
statement about them conflicting with *genuine* values provided by the
authors seems to suggest that my understanding is wrong. What then, is a
place-holding character and how does it differ from , for example, my
decision as an author to put "enter your name here" in a text input that is
for a user to type in their name. I must admit to being a tad confused now. 

If there is a difference between the two and I do not use place-holding
characters how can I achieve AAA accessibility?

thanks
Julian.

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Jukka Korpela [mailto:jukka.korpela@tieke.fi]
> Sent: Thursday, May 23, 2002 10:54 AM
> To: 'w3c-wai-ig@w3.org'
> Subject: RE: place-holding characters in form elements
> 
> 
> Scarlett Julian wrote:
> 
> > Priority 10.4 states that form text areas should have default 
> > place-holding characters.
> 
> (You mean Guideline 10.4. (It is at priority level 3.))
> 
> > This is causing us some grief
> 
> Many people share your opinions and views. The "place-holding 
> characters"
> might help people using some old software, but they probably 
> cause more
> problems than benefits. Besides, they are illogical, and using them
> conflicts with genuine default values provided by authors.
> 
> > If the user tabs to the text area it seems that the default text is
> > highlighted and then overtyped but how can I make this happen 
> > with someone who uses a mouse (without resorting to client side
> > javascript). 
> 
> You can't.
> 
> My advice is: Don't use place-holding characters. (They are sometimes
> claimed to give information about the kind of data that is 
> expected, but any
> need for such hints is caused by lack of adequate 
> explanations and labels
> before the fields.)
> 
> -- 
> Jukka Korpela
> TIEKE Tietoyhteiskunnan kehittämiskeskus ry
> Finnish Information Society Development Centre 
> Salomonkatu 17 A, 10th floor, FIN - 00100 HELSINKI, FINLAND
> Phone: +358 9 4763 0397 Fax: +358 9 4763 0399 
> http://www.tieke.fi  jukka.korpela@tieke.fi
> 
The information in this email is confidential. The contents may not be disclosed or used by anyone other than the addressee.  If you are not the addressee, please tell us by using the reply facility in your email software as soon as possible. Sheffield City Council cannot accept any responsibility for the accuracy or completeness of this message as it has been transmitted over a public network.  If you suspect that the message may have been intercepted or amended please tell us as soon as possible.
Received on Thursday, 23 May 2002 06:20:51 GMT

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.2.0+W3C-0.50 : Tuesday, 19 July 2011 18:14:04 GMT