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RE: New York Attorney General holds ADA applies to Web Businesses.

From: Phill Jenkins <pjenkins@us.ibm.com>
Date: Mon, 23 Aug 2004 10:12:58 -0500
To: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Cc: <webaim-forum-d@list.webaim.org>
Message-ID: <OF1CAF8A8A.A436EBE7-ON86256EF9.004F2A12-86256EF9.00539627@us.ibm.com>
I'm not a lawyer either, but I found it interesting that Priceline.com is 
not headquartered in NY, but was incorporated in Delaware and is 
headquartered in Connecticut (See note 1 SEC filings).  Also, Ramada.com 
has a  "Term of Use" agreement (see note 2) that includes a section 11 on 
the governing laws and jurisdiction.  [Yes, this is only the second time I 
actually read the terms of use of a web site/application.]  It basically 
says that you agree to be governed by the laws of the State of New Jersey. 

Thatcher said:
"If you look in detail, you will find that the agreement is pretty close 
to WCAG AA ..." 

Does the State of New York or New Jersey actually specify WCAG 1.0, or was 
that just used by AGO?

So if I incorporate in a state that uses the 508 web standards, am I held 
to those guidelines, or if I incorporate in a state that uses the WCAG 1.0 
standards, am I held to those standards?  Can I pick which state (or 
country) I choose to operate under?  Can I pick which standard (or level a 
double A, or triple AAA) I choose to follow? 

There is also a priceline.co.uk, a London based travel services, and they 
invest in an Asian travel service, also called Priceline.com, that 
operates in Hong Kong and Singapore.  Which accessibility standard is 
applicable to these two sites?  Does the U.K.'s DDA specify a particular 
standard - such as WCAG 1.0 A (priority 1)?

Forgive me for wandering into the policy discussion, but it is the policy 
(laws, policies, purchasing regulations, etc) that typically points to 
technical standard, or includes the technical specs as does 508 and ADA 
[although ADA does NOT reference Web accessibility standards], or leaves 
it totally open with statements like "must be accessible to people with 
disabilities".  In this New York case, it seems that the policy under 
which the complaint was filed was the ADA, but I'm confused why the 508 
Web standard wasn't chosen or cited as the standard since it is also a 
Federal policy like the ADA.

Phill Jenkins
IBM Research - Accessibility Center

Note 1 SEC filings 

Note 2 Terms of Use http://www.ramada.com/Ramada/control/terms_of_use

We operate this Web Site (excluding Linked Sites) from Our offices within 
the States of New Jersey and New York. It can be accessed from all 50 
states, as well as from other countries around the world. As each of these 
places has laws that may differ from those of New Jersey and New York, by 
accessing this Web Site, You agree that these Terms and Your use of the 
Web Site shall be governed in all respect by the internal substantive laws 
of the State of New Jersey, without regard to conflict of laws provisions 
and shall not be governed by the United Nations Convention on the 
International Sale of Goods. You further submit to exclusive jurisdiction 
and venue in the state and federal courts located in the State of New 
Jersey for all disputes, cases and controversies regarding this Web Site, 
Your use of this Web Site, and Your relationship with Us. We make no 
representation that materials on this Web Site are appropriate or 
available for use in other locations, and accessing them from territories 
where the Content is illegal is prohibited. Those who choose to access 
this Web Site from other locations do so at their own risk and are 
responsible for compliance with local laws, including laws regarding the 
transmission of technical data exported from the United States or the 
country in which You reside.
Received on Monday, 23 August 2004 15:13:39 UTC

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