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RE: Web video accessibility

From: Sam Joehl <sam.joehl@ssbbartgroup.com>
Date: Tue, 16 Aug 2011 09:18:35 -0400
Message-ID: <8c41722b54c42e1bc186f3e3d821e549@mail.gmail.com>
To: ext@embedplus.com, Cliff Tyllick <cliff.tyllick@yahoo.com>
Cc: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Tay -

The issue with using keystrokes to perform actions is that many screen
reading applications will trap the OnKeyDown event to allow the user to
navigate to various elements on the web page. None of the keystrokes you
identified worked for me because the screen reader was not passing them
through to the browser. Take a look at this accessible YouTube player:


They use the standard player but provide redundant controls which are
labeled and keyboard-accessible. Notice that they place access keys on the
most commonly used controls to allow activation of them using a single
command. This provides the best of both worlds: controls which appear in the
tab order and can also be activated via an access key.


Sam Joehl

Senior Accessibility Specialist


(703) 637-8956




"There are no disabled people; only disabled technology." - Hugh Herr, board
member, No Barriers Foundation

*From:* w3c-wai-ig-request@w3.org [mailto:w3c-wai-ig-request@w3.org] *On
Behalf Of *EmbedPlus
*Sent:* Tuesday, August 16, 2011 12:09 AM
*To:* Cliff Tyllick
*Cc:* w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
*Subject:* Re: Web video accessibility

[Oops, I forgot to add links to what I was referring to in the in the
previous email.  Please use this version]


Thanks for the detailed response and analysis!  I'll address some of your

>Does it support captioning?

While the annotations could be used to manually input captions, EmbedPlus
serves as an extension of the YouTube player, which inherently supports
captioning. I suspect you already know this though.  The main goal of the
annotations feature was to provide a means for third-parties to embed a
video on their websites or blogs, and explicitly add their own timed text
without having to be the YouTube user owning the video.

>Does it support video description?

You mentioned the idea of opening a script document for those users that
cannot see.  I suppose you propose that idea so that a screen reader could
be applied on said document.  What do you think about the idea of overlaying
audio clips instead?  That is, just like there is timed text (annotations),
one could have audio clips that are played at given times when needed to
describe what's going on?  The video playback could be paused during these
audio clips in order to prevent mixing with the video sound.


You make a very good point about tabs and we will explore this.  Along these
lines, we have instead played with the idea of hot keys for a version of the
player that we built for a free application found to be quite ripe for the
player.  It's a video-based pronunciation dictionary and word usage API we
are developing that leverages the features offered by the player; check out:
"How do you pronounce and
You can read details on the page if you want, but in short, a few
had asked if they could just push the left and right arrow keys for PREV and
NEXT respectively.  We implemented this general idea for the left side
navigation buttons on the version of the player used by the application.
You can try it out on a couple common examples and see what I mean.

-          How do you pronounce and use gyro (in

-          How do you pronounce and use salmon (in

Beyond PREV and NEXT, hitting the 'P' key plays the video, 'S' starts slow
motion and 'R' invokes replay.  It would be nice to hear your thoughts on
hot keys versus tabs.  I figure they achieve similar things, but hot keys
provide the added benefit of direct access - i.e., no need to go in order of

Thanks again,



*From*: "Cliff Tyllick" <cliff.tyllick@yahoo.com>
*Sent*: Monday, August 15, 2011 10:52 AM
*To*: "EmbedPlus" <ext@embedplus.com>
*Subject*: Re: Web video accessibility

Tay, the link works for me in Mac OS X (10.5.8) and Firefox 5.0.1. I turned
off my ad and pop-up blockers before starting this test.

Off the top of my head, I can think of these main issues for accessibility
of a video player:

   - Does it support captioning? (If I cannot hear, is it possible to
   display the text of the script or transcript as it is being said? It appears
   that EmbedPlus does support captioning, although the information in the
   captions includes very little of what is in the sound track, and the sound
   track does not include everything that is in the captions.)
   - Does it support video description? (If I cannot see, can I open a
   document that, interwoven into the script or transcript, gives me a rich
   description of what is going on?)
   - If I have no mouse, or if I cannot operate the mouse - and especially
   if I am blind - can I still get to and operate the controls? (Will the tab
   key take me from one control to the next, and can I operate each of them
   with the space bar?)
   - Assuming I can get to and operate the controls from the keyboard, can I
   tell which control I am on at any one time and what I can expect it to do?
   (Are form controls labeled in a way that allows my my screen reader to
   announce the labels to me and allows me to recognize their function?)
   - Assuming I can get to, recognize, and operate the form controls, is the
   tab order correct? (Does the sequence of controls I encounter when I hit the
   tab key match the order in which these controls appear? As shown below, it
   does not.)

When I get to this page, nothing seems to happen when I hit the tab key. To
jumpstart my review of your viewer itself, I used the mouse to start the
video on the right (the *plus* view, not the standard). When I did, the
captioning window opened by default. From there, here is what happened with
each successive pressing of the tab key. When I indicate a function - for
example, Next - that means that the function's control was highlighted by a
yellow box. In this list, I've also indicated whether the control was
operable with the space bar when highlighted:

1.  nothing

2.  nothing

3.  Next (not operable)

4.  nothing

5.  Previous (operable)

6.  nothing

7.  Slow (operable)

8.  nothing

9.  Replay (operable, but does same thing as "Previous")

10.              nothing

11.              nothing

12.              nothing

13.              Get (operable - opens in a new window, but nothing in the
new window is highlighted and the first time I press tab clears the contents
from both "Code" fields)

14.              nothing

15.              Full Screen (operable, but then Tab no longer works)

16.              More (operable, but there is no focus indicator on the new
screen. And would I understand where you have taken me - what am I expected
to be able to do here?)

17.              nothing

18.              Zoom (operable, but I have no control over the area zoomed
in on. I can't select the area to zoom in on, and I can't pan the shot once
I have zoomed in)

19.              nothing

20.              Read (operable, but where am I?)

21.              nothing

22.              nothing

23.              Close Caption window (not operable)

24.              nothing (but cycle is restarting; note that the next three
actions are same as first three)

25.              nothing

26.              nothing

27.              Next

I could not get out of this particular set of controls except by one
irreproducible event that led to a highlighted progress slider. When I got
to the slider, I couldn't operate it. And if I ever got to the other
controls in that top row - Start/Stop, Sound, CC (which, apparently, will
produce a transcript?), 360p, and Watch Later - I couldn't tell that I had.

So your viewer looks promising, but it also seems to me that you have more
work to do to make it accessible.



*From:* "accessys@smart.net" <accessys@smart.net>
*To:* EmbedPlus <ext@embedplus.com>
*Cc:* w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
*Sent:* Monday, August 15, 2011 9:20 AM
*Subject:* Re: Web video accessibility

the test view was
linux Ubuntu 8.4 and the browser was lynx

and the propaganda was all the stuff saying how great Embed was.

actually I didn't expect it to work, how do you get a basically video
format to work in an audio/text system of viewing.


On Mon, 15 Aug 2011, EmbedPlus wrote:

> Date: Mon, 15 Aug 2011 00:58:55 -0400
> From: EmbedPlus <ext@embedplus.com>
> To: accessys@smart.net
> Cc: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
> Subject: Re: Web video accessibility
> Bob,
> We have zero have any ads on the page, so I'm not sure if you are looking
> at the right page.  Not sure about the "propaganda" thing as well -- given
> my understanding of the word.
> What could really help is if you could you give me some info on your
> browser on linux.  Information about the linux distribution would also
> help.
> -Tay
> ----------------------------------------
> From: accessys@smart.net
> Sent: Sunday, August 14, 2011 11:01 PM
> To: "EmbedPlus" <ext@embedplus.com>
> Subject: Re: Web video accessibility
> "does not recognize your browser"
> get lots of advertising and propaganda
> but no action
> Bob
> On Sun, 14 Aug 2011, EmbedPlus wrote:
>> Date: Sun, 14 Aug 2011 22:52:13 -0400
>> From: EmbedPlus
>> To: accessys@smart.net, Karen Lewellen
>> Cc: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
>> Subject: Re: Web video accessibility
>> Resent-Date: Mon, 15 Aug 2011 02:52:57 +0000
>> Resent-From: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
>> Which link?
>> Here http://www.embedplus.com/ ?    I haven't seen any problems on my
>> side.
>> ----------------------------------------
>> From: accessys@smart.net
>> Sent: Sunday, August 14, 2011 9:34 PM
>> To: "Karen Lewellen"
>> Subject: Re: Web video accessibility
>> got pretty much the same error and I'm running linux
>> Bob
>> On Sun, 14 Aug 2011, Karen Lewellen wrote:
>>> Date: Sun, 14 Aug 2011 21:21:26 -0400 (EDT)
>>> From: Karen Lewellen
>>> To: EmbedPlus
>>> Cc: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
>>> Subject: Re: Web video accessibility
>>> Resent-Date: Mon, 15 Aug 2011 01:21:53 +0000
>>> Resent-From: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
>>> I just checked on this, do you realize the link here produces an unable
>> to
>>> connect to remote host error?
>>> Karen
>>> On Thu, 11 Aug 2011, EmbedPlus wrote:
>>>>  Normal
>>>>  0
>>>>  false
>>>>  false
>>>>  false
>>>>  MicrosoftInternetExplorer4
>>>> Hi all,
>>>> I'm the co-developer a YouTube third-party tool called
>>>> EmbedPlus.  It enhances the standard
>>>> YouTube player with many features that aren't inherently supported.
>> We've
>>>> been getting lots of feedback regarding
>>>> the accessibility benefits of some of these features like movable
> zoom,
>>>> slow
>>>> motion, and even third-party annotations.
>>>> As the tool continues to grow in popularity, the importance of its
>>>> accessibility rises. I decided to do some research and found the WAI
>>>> Interest
>>>> group to be a major proponent of accessibility on the web.  If anyone
>> has
>>>> time to take a look at
>>>> EmbedPlus and share feedback that could help improve the tool, please
>> do.
>>>> Here's the link: http://www.embedplus.com/
>>>> .  If needed, I can provide further details.
>>>> Thank you in advance,
>>>> Tay
Received on Tuesday, 16 August 2011 13:18:24 UTC

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