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Part 2 Labels

From: Hy Cohen <hy@miplet.com>
Date: Wed, 2 Oct 2002 13:18:02 -0700
To: "'Charles McCathieNevile'" <charles@w3.org>
Cc: <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Message-ID: <000101c26a50$d01a7d00$b5a7f5d1@hh2tg01>

Oh, I should also add, Microsoft could really improve MSAA and the
browser in general.  A majority of those who use screen readers use
Internet Explorer, because it works overall better than say Netscape.

Internet Explorer will not allow for access keys, nor does MSAA send
information to the screen reader about field sets (according to GW
Micro), for example.

 From a users standpoint, I find it extremely disappointing the browser
developers, screen reader developers, and the website designing people
cannot seem to agree to, and actually follow, guidelines.  W3C has done
a pretty good job at writing the guidelines, its just everyone else who
pick and choose what they want to implement.

From a designers standpoint, I also find it frustrating when I follow
WAI guidelines, but they don't work because the screen readers and
browsers don't go a long with their end of the "bargain"  It's a bit
strange to have to violate the WAI guidelines to make the website
accessible.  That just doesn't make sense.  <puzzled look>

I really would like to be able to design a website which is screen
reader friendly and look good visually too.  Why can't these two things
work together?  I would think it could be quite possible.  Why should a
designer have to sacrifice "looks" for accessibility and usability?

As someone who is blind, I use the Internet everyday.  The Internet is
probably one of the neatest inventions.  As an example, in a lot of
cases, I no longer have to depend on a reader to help me with research
papers for school.  I can go onto the Internet, type in a few keywords
on my favorite search engine, and like magic, there it is!  When at
least the minimum accessibility techniques are implemented by website
designers, I can at least get what I'm looking for, all be it stressful
to have to listen to a bazillion links on a navigation bar, for example.

I know I am preaching to the choir, so I'll get off my soapbox.  I truly
appreciate everything you are all doing to improve access for people
like me.


-----Original Message-----
From: w3c-wai-ig-request@w3.org [mailto:w3c-wai-ig-request@w3.org] On
Behalf Of Charles McCathieNevile
Sent: Wednesday, October 02, 2002 12:28 PM
To: Hy Cohen
Cc: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Subject: RE: LABEL Tag Question

Hy wrote to me:

I think you are misunderstanding something.  Window-Eyes users will not
get the title if there is a label.  The label takes priority.  Only if
there is not a label will Window-Eyes read the title.

And he was right - I had misunderstood. So I think you need to go with
including the extra information in the label. sigh. (If there is a title
on the label element does it get any better?)

Also, is it really Window-Eyes' fault, or is it something in MSAA, or is
it just an interaction between the two that is underspecified?



On Wed, 2 Oct 2002, Charles McCathieNevile wrote:

>well, it sounds like you have a few possibilities:
>1 You can remove the content of the label element (which is what that
>  people will get) and put it in the title element (which screen-reader
>  will get.
>This strikes me as an extremely bad idea. People with low vision whose
>browser settings distort the layout will not be able to associate a
>label with a control any more, except by guessing. It is also
>instructing people to avoid doing things according to the agreed
>standard - generally a bad idea if you rely on systems being designed
>to use content developed to a standard.
>2 You make the labels have more in them than you might otherwise, and
>  have a title, so Window-Eyes users get what everyone else does.
>This seems workable in general, but not the most aesthetically pleasing

>3 You can use labels, with titles to carry more substantial information

>  is to some extent redundant - Window-Eyes users will get that by
>This seems like the best compromise to me.
>4 You can use labels, with titles only carrying supplemental
>  which means Window-eyes users only get the supplemental information
>  they are able to read the content of labels in a new version.
>This would be fine if people were more fussy about not using software
>that has bugs in it, but in the real world that still seems an
>impossible demand. The software is getting better, but there is a way
>to go. (Not talking about any product, just about all the software I
>have ever used).
>On Wed, 2 Oct 2002, Hy Cohen wrote:
>>True, however, I know Window-Eyes, which is  a fairly common screen
>>reader, will not tell you the TITLE if there is a LABEL.  It would be
>>odd to put the instructions for the field in every LABEL.  The TITLE
>>is much more appropriate place, but to force Window-Eyes to read the
>>TITLE I cannot use a LABEL.  As long as the TITLE will work at meeting

>>the WAI guidelines as a sub for LABEL, then that is fine.  I'm just
>>trying to meet WAI guidelines but still make the Window-Eyes read all
>>the important info without having to switch MSAA mode on and off.  As
>>a screen reader user myself, I know how annoying that is.  <smile>
>>-----Original Message-----
>>From: w3c-wai-ig-request@w3.org [mailto:w3c-wai-ig-request@w3.org] On
>>Behalf Of Charles McCathieNevile
>>Sent: Wednesday, October 02, 2002 9:22 AM
>>To: Phill Jenkins
>>Cc: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
>>Subject: Re: LABEL Tag Question
>>It is true that the title is something that might be a tooltip. The
>>point is that title is extra information users might not get (or might

>>not ask for). The label will be presented to everyone. So repeating
>>information from the label in the title seems an odd thing to do -
>>that should be additional, supplementary information.
>>On Wed, 2 Oct 2002, Phill Jenkins wrote:
>>>>> title="Please enter the minimum required age for
>>>>> this activity, or leave blank for no minimum age."> <label
>>>>This is an abuse of title.  title is *not* a tool-tip.  It is
>>>>grammatically a noun, not an imperative.
>>>Actually, the title attribute is rendered as a tool tip in most
>>>graphical browsers, and more importantly, is described as such in the

>>>HTML spec.
>>>See http://www.w3.org/TR/html401/struct/global.html#adef-title
>>>... offers advisory information about the element ... may annotate
>>>... Values of the title attribute may be rendered by user agents in a

>>>variety of ways. For instance, visual browsers frequently display the

>>>title as a "tool tip" (a short message that appears when the pointing

>>>device pauses over an object). Audio user agents may speak the title
>>>information in a similar context. For example, setting the attribute
>>>a link allows user agents (visual and non-visual) to tell users about

>>>the nature of the linked
>>><end quote>
>>>Phill Jenkins,  IBM Research Division - Accessibility Center
>>Charles McCathieNevile  http://www.w3.org/People/Charles  tel: +61 409

>>134 136 SWAD-E http://www.w3.org/2001/sw/Europe ------------ WAI
>>http://www.w3.org/WAI  21 Mitchell street, FOOTSCRAY Vic 3011,
>>fax(fr): +33 4 92 38 78 22  W3C, 2004 Route des Lucioles, 06902 Sophia
>>Antipolis Cedex, France

Charles McCathieNevile  http://www.w3.org/People/Charles  tel: +61 409
134 136 SWAD-E http://www.w3.org/2001/sw/Europe ------------ WAI
http://www.w3.org/WAI  21 Mitchell street, FOOTSCRAY Vic 3011, Australia
fax(fr): +33 4 92 38 78 22  W3C, 2004 Route des Lucioles, 06902 Sophia
Antipolis Cedex, France
Received on Wednesday, 2 October 2002 16:18:11 UTC

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