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RE: The Problem with WCAG (was RE: CSS Techniques for WCAG 2.0)

From: John M Slatin <john_slatin@austin.utexas.edu>
Date: Thu, 19 Aug 2004 08:43:02 -0500
Message-ID: <C46A1118E0262B47BD5C202DA2490D1A0331804E@MAIL02.austin.utexas.edu>
To: "RUST Randal" <RRust@COVANSYS.com>, <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>

Randal RUST  wrote:
Accessibility guidelines are a wonderful idea, I just happen to think
they need to be less subjective in order to gain wider acceptance.

In my opinion, the point that WCAG 2.0  needs to be more testable is
well taken.  Members of the WCAG Working Group have been working
steadily to develop comprehensive test suites, and plans also call for
publication of technology-specific checklists (for W3C technologies
only; we'll have to call on developers of proprietary technologies to
write checklists for their own technologies). The hope is that these
will help developers of evaluation tools and Web developers test for
conformance to WCAG 2.0.

The actual WCAG 2.0 recommendation (when it reaches that exalted status
<grin>) can't include anything as specific as requiring use of the alt
attribute because one of the key requirements for WCAG 2.0 is that it
apply across a wide range of technologies used to create Web content,
from (X)HTML to SMIL to SVG to RDF. This is why the guidelines and
success criteria seem so abstract. 

This isn't intended as an excuse for vagueness! In my opinion, it
entails an even greater obligation to be as precise as we possibly can.

Thanks for the good feedback.

John Slatin
Received on Thursday, 19 August 2004 13:43:03 UTC

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