W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > w3c-wai-ig@w3.org > October to December 2003

Re: default place holder for radio buttons- checkpoint 10.4

From: David Poehlman <poehlman1@comcast.net>
Date: Fri, 21 Nov 2003 10:01:43 -0500
Message-ID: <000d01c3b041$e6a60a70$6501a8c0@handsontech>
To: "Scarlett Julian (ED)" <Julian.Scarlett@sheffield.gov.uk>, <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>

I am for neutrality on this.  In other words, check nothing and leave it up
to the user to decide what they want checked.  Not only does this prevent
entering accidental data, it also prevents entering optional data if the
user wishes to do that.  When you check something, you are apparently making
assumptions about your users.  I'm not sure what the reasoning is for having
something checked by default but I also support the use of combo boxes where
ever possible with the item at the box being a null item.  If something
needs to be chosen and nothing has been chosen, submission should inform the
user that this needs to be done before acceptance will be granted and this
also should be done within the form to help cut down on non submission of
critical data.

So, while I think the null approach is best, I could be persuaded by cogent
arguments against my position being aware that I have been using assistive
technology for around 30 years.

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Scarlett Julian (ED)" <Julian.Scarlett@sheffield.gov.uk>
To: <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Sent: Friday, November 21, 2003 9:58 AM
Subject: default place holder for radio buttons- checkpoint 10.4


last year I asked:

"Is it necessary to make a radio button in a fieldset checked? I know that
is a requirement for WCAG 10.4 but how useful is it? I'm a bit worried by
setting one as checked for say, indicating a user's gender in a form, and
then that user hitting return accidentally and sending information that they
haven't actually entered. I guess the same applies to checkboxes. For text
inputs the problem is less because the form will just submit something like
"enter your name" instead of a name but with buttons the data sent could be
valid but incorrect"

I never actually received a response from anyone (not that I'm bitter ;-))
but the problem has just reared it's head again.

I know that some people think that it's not actually necessary now to
include default place-holders for text areas but does the same still hold
for grouped controls such as radio buttons and checkboxes?



Julian Scarlett
Education Web Officer
Floor 6, Derwent House
150, Arundel Gate
Sheffield S1 2JY

tel: 0114 2735612

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Received on Friday, 21 November 2003 10:12:44 UTC

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