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Making the Suits "get it" (Was RE: Media - Suit Over Airlines' Web Sites Tests Bounds of ADA)

From: John Foliot - bytown internet <foliot@bytowninternet.com>
Date: Tue, 8 Oct 2002 08:53:25 -0400
To: "RUST Randal" <RRust@COVANSYS.com>, "'Nissen, Dan E'" <Dan.Nissen@UNISYS.com>, <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Message-ID: <GKEFJJEKDDIMBHJOGLENMEGNCMAA.foliot@bytowninternet.com>

> Oftentimes when trying to promote accessibility, I think that it
> is best to
> eliminate the disabled user from the equation, and to focus on
> the user with
> the alternate browser.  When you're talking about marketing and profit
> generation, management tends to see those using a cell phone to access the
> Web in a more positive light.  While this is highly discriminatory, it is
> simply the facts of life.

Randal hit a key point here... accessibility is more than just the disabled
community, and the sooner we can sell THAT message the sooner the suits will
"get it".

I do regular information/training sessions on accessible web design, and as
part of those sessions I review the client's site in Lynx (get the real deal
at http://lynx.isc.org/release/).  Often I am asked "yes, but who uses Lynx
anyway and why?".  While I explain that there is in fact a definite user
group (visually impaired, Linux weenies, users under extreme conditions ,
and others...), I explain that it also allows me to ensure that it is
available to alternative browsers such as Cellular phones and PDAs.  At that
point I "unveil" a small WAP emulator I have previously opened and loaded
with the client's site.  The interface resembles a cell phone, and the
content is pretty good, although some functionality is disabled (for
example, forms and other "post" type calls don't seem to  work).  The point
is, they understand the visual and the "lightbulb" comes on.

There are a number of WAP emulators available on the web, I am currently
using the Deck-It emulator available at http://www.pyweb.com/tools/.
(available as Windows or Linux apps)


Received on Tuesday, 8 October 2002 08:54:30 UTC

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