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RE: Rockville, MD- Seeking low vision users for testing federal w ebsite

From: Access Systems <accessys@smart.net>
Date: Wed, 18 Dec 2002 08:24:46 -0500 (EST)
To: "Nissen, Dan E" <Dan.Nissen@UNISYS.com>
cc: WAI-IG <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.4.21.0212180820250.24163-100000@smarty.smart.net>

On Wed, 18 Dec 2002, Nissen, Dan E wrote:

> I see a whole lot of criticism of what is a pretty minimal description of a
> part of an activity that is definitely going to be better than not doing it.
> The stick seems to be all some of you know how to do.  How about the carrot
> and see if we can encourage people to start down this road without setting a
> standard none of us can meet?  No way all the discussed environments need to
> be tested if the AT follows the standards and the web site is also designed
> to the standards.  

if the site followed the standards (WAI/508) there should be no major
problems because the standards are well tested.   but this test does not
appear to be to a "standard" but to check out their own website to see if
it works with a limited set of assistive software and equipment rather
than to the established standard.

> The expectations are way up there and the criticism is pretty quick on the
> draw.  

of course the expectations are way up there, as someone who has been on
what passes for the internet for over 20 years I am seriously dismayed by
the degradation of accessibility over the years, the equipment and
software is getting better but total access is getting worse...would you
not be dismayed?


> Best regards,
> Dan
> -----Original Message-----
> From: David Poehlman [mailto:poehlman1@comcast.net]
> Sent: Wednesday, December 18, 2002 6:18 AM
> To: Joe Clark; WAI-IG
> Subject: Re: Rockville, MD- Seeking low vision users for testing federal
> website
> any testing which reaches the rong conconclusions and passes them off as
> correct is bad.
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Joe Clark" <joeclark@joeclark.org>
> To: "WAI-IG" <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
> Sent: Tuesday, December 17, 2002 10:42 PM
> Subject: Re: Rockville, MD- Seeking low vision users for testing federal
> website
> > As others have mentioned, this is not the right approach to testing
> > website accessibility.  At best it tests one narrowly-defined aspect
> > of accessibility
> ...which nonetheless needs testing.
> > at worst it risks reinforcing any bad practices
> > you may have - such as authoring to browser behaviour at the expense
> > of presenting the website contents clearly
> ...which you have no evidence they are doing.
> > Both JAWS and Window-Eyes deal with one particular disability
> ...which nonetheless requires accommodation, and these are the two
> most popular ways to do it.
> > Both are themselves inaccessible to many users, by virtue of cost
> > and the prerequisites required to install them
> ...which is irrelevant and a tiresome albatross hung around the
> necks of the accessibility "movement." By this reasoning, no
> adaptive technology should be developed if it cannot be handed out
> for free to everyone who could possibly use it.
> If you disagree with the planned testing of actual disabled users,
> don't participate in it. But we need more such testing, and, as I
> argue in my book, even sub-optimal testing of disabled users beats
> the heck out of none at all.
> --
>   Joe Clark  |  joeclark@joeclark.org
>   Author, _Building Accessible Websites_
>   <http://joeclark.org/access/> | <http://joeclark.org/book/>

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Received on Wednesday, 18 December 2002 08:25:35 UTC

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