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Re: posted without comment...

From: Debi Orton <oradnio@wsg.net>
Date: Thu, 26 Jul 2007 17:37:30 -0400
Message-Id: <>
To: joshue.oconnor@ncbi.ie,chaals@opera.com
Cc: John Foliot <foliot@wats.ca>, "'Patrick H. Lauke'" <redux@splintered.co.uk>, 'wai-ig list' <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>, 'Lachlan Hunt' <lachlan.hunt@lachy.id.au>

Butting in here...

I'm afraid to say it, but I agree with Josh regarding the HTML 5 
workgroup. Although I haven't been terribly vocal, I've read at least 
75% of the posts to the listserv, and the lack of tolerance or 
civility, the disregard and disrespect of the need for accessibility, 
and the insistence on "paving the cowpaths" no matter how wrong those 
cowpaths are sometimes seems to overshadow all of the gains web 
development advocates have made for semantic markup, 
awareness-raising about accessibility and why it's important, and 
about basic usability over the past few years.  I have considered 
dropping out of the workgroup on several occasions, but some of the 
people on the workgroup have written to me privately to urge me to 
keep working on it.

Some might say we're being babies and that's how the business world 
is.  My reply to that is that if it's business you're concerned with, 
you risk alienating 10% of your potential audience by ignoring 
accessibility.  Further, you're basically saying that you have no 
wish to do business with the US Government or any of the many US 
States that have adopted accessibility requirements.  The EU will 
require accessibility soon (can't recall the specifics of that) and I 
believe the UK already does.  So how much of your potential worldwide 
customer base have you just kissed off?  Not many businesses can 
ignore that much potential revenue.

But the business case aside, what I find most disconcerting is the 
tone of the workgroup.  I signed up thinking that this would be fun, 
an exciting way to learn how the specifications I've used for so long 
were created.  I haven't found any part of this fun, and I really 
have to force myself to read the listserv most days.  The IRC log was 
just the icing on the cake.  I sincerely hope none of those folks 
ever finds themselves disabled, because the world they would make 
would probably dictate they'd have to be taken out and shot.

Debi Orton

At 05:09 PM 7/26/2007, Joshue O Connor wrote:

>Charles McCathieNevile wrote:
> > Maybe we can lift the level of dialogue, respect, trust, and 
> genuine cooperation to the point where this work becomes useful, 
> instead of just sucking time and resources. Because it is important.
>I am all for that Chaals  - but it looks like there is a reassessment of
>some ground rules that needs to take place - as the comments on the IRC
>are pretty disgraceful - and to be frank I am starting to think this
>whole thing is a waste of time. I care a lot about what I do and thought
>the WG was a place where I could share ideas with like minded people who
>have a common organizational goal. That does not seem to be the case.
>There seems to be a genuine dearth of tolerance and respect that is
>frankly shocking. The IRC comments reveal more in their tone than those
>who are involved in the dialogue probably realise.
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Debi Orton/oradnio@wsg.net
Received on Thursday, 26 July 2007 21:34:12 UTC

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