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RE: Clarification: RE: Accessible web content services.

From: John Foliot - WATS.ca <foliot@wats.ca>
Date: Thu, 29 Jul 2004 12:04:34 -0400
To: "'Jon Dodd'" <jon@bunnyfoot.com>, <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Message-ID: <011401c47585$e07daf90$6601a8c0@bosshog>

Jon Dodd wrote:
> I have not been following this thread - life is too short - 
> but I scanned this message and read the above. I think that 
> the author of the quoted text is probably referring to the 
> fact that under some OS/Browser combinations the fact that 
> explicit labeling of form controls has been used is revealed 
> by a flashing cursor. There are of course other ways to check 
> this but I imagine the author was just being helpful - if my 
> interpretation is correct (and I haven't read the article) 
> then perhaps he did not explain this fully.


Yes, perhaps the author was trying to be helpful.  Unfortunately, the
piece is written as a "guru tip", as if it were definitive or normative,
which sadly it isn't.  In fact, it is full of numerous errors,
confusions, etc., and pre-supposes that the "tester" is using Internet
Explorer (without it actually being mentioned).  It is, as Tina points
out, a hindrance rather than a help, as it does more to spread
mis-information and half truths then it does to aid "our cause".  

I think that this is the greater point... our industry is full of
opinion (right down to the WCAG, which is not written in the language of
standards but rather as guidelines open to interpretation).  There is no
definitive benchmark with which we can all conform; heck this whole
thread started with the question, how does one find a credible
web-accessibility author/developer/auditor/teacher/"person"?  At best,
we self-police, attempt to preach/teach, try to lead by example, and
hope for a better day.  But as Tina states:

> I don't have a good solution at this time. I know, however, that we
> need to acknowledge that there exist a problem.
> So: how do we create an organization, of volunteers, that can be an
> umbrella for all accessibility 'workers' *without* such problems that
> will ruin the credibility ?

John Foliot  foliot@wats.ca
Web Accessibility Specialist / Co-founder of WATS.ca
Web Accessibility Testing and Services
http://www.wats.ca   1.866.932.4878 (North America) 
Received on Thursday, 29 July 2004 12:05:43 UTC

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