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RE: Legal requirements RE: statistics

From: Kynn Bartlett <kynn-edapta@idyllmtn.com>
Date: Sun, 13 Jan 2002 20:46:53 -0800
Message-Id: <a05101006b86811b97bea@[10.0.1.2]>
To: "Harry Woodrow" <harrry@email.com>, "Denise Wood" <Denise_Wood@operamail.com>, <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Cc: <charles@w3.org>
At 11:37 AM +0800 1/14/02, Harry Woodrow wrote:
>  >From this opinion it would appear that the fact that you were only hired to
>do something would not be a defence to a clame for damages, with consequent
>financial loss and damage to reputation.

It's dangerous for non-lawyers (I'm not one, I can't speak for you)
to speak in generalities about legal matters in an international
forum, but I really think that if you've got a decent contract, the
contractor would be reasonably insulated from lawsuits arising
from following out the explicit contractual requests of the client.

I'd say that unless negligence was shown, the contractor should not
be held responsible for a client decision to not be concerned with
accessibility.

Quoting from
>http://elj.warwick.ac.uk/jilt/01-2/sloan.html
>in section 5.2
>It is submitted that there is a definite correlation between the services of
>a builder and that of a Web site designer - especially in the light of the
>potential legal requirements of the DDA.  Therefore it is argued there is an
>implied contractual duty upon Web designers to carry out their work in a
>competent manner using 'the skill and care of a competent workman.' Further,
>the obligation to follow recognised standards and practices' would surely
>include a requirement to design the Web site with WAI Guidelines
>compliance.....

It's pure fantasy (although an appealing one, but false nevertheless)
to consider that in any way the WCAG document represents a 'recognized
standard' for professional web design and any deviation is some sort
of violation of professional ethics or gross negligence.  While it
might be appealing for some activists or lawyers to claim this, it's
just not supportable to put WCAG on the same level as standards for
physical buildings.  In fact, it's a downright preposterous claim.

--Kynn

-- 
Kynn Bartlett <kynn@idyllmtn.com>                 http://kynn.com
Chief Technologist, Idyll Mountain            http://idyllmtn.com
Web Accessibility Expert-for-hire          http://kynn.com/resume
January Web Accessibility eCourse           http://kynn.com/+d201
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Received on Sunday, 13 January 2002 23:53:27 GMT

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