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RE: H65: Using the title attribute to identify form controls when the label element cannot be used

From: Roger Hudson <rhudson@usability.com.au>
Date: Thu, 10 May 2012 20:52:41 +1000
To: "'Phil Spencer'" <spencer_phil@hotmail.com>, "'ax interest list'" <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Message-ID: <00c201cd2e9b$07048e00$150daa00$@com.au>
Hi Phil,

 

If I might make a couple of comments regarding your question. But, first I
would like to make it clear that I support the use of the title attribute in
appropriate circumstances.

 

First, H65 doesn't suggests the title attribute can be used for whatever
reason. Rather, it states it can be used "when the visual design cannot
accommodate the label" and provides two examples, which in my opinion are
the most likely cases where this could apply; search inputs and inputs for
the different components of phone numbers. Also, H65 suggests the title
attribute should be used with the form control, which does not appear to be
the case with your example.

 

Second, I would be cautious about considering a technique to be acceptable
based on testing with just a few browsers and assistive devices. In this
regard, I would suggest following the WCAG 2 Sufficient Techniques which I
understand have been rigorously before being accepted. At this stage, the
technique you propose does not appear to be considered a Sufficient
Technique within WCAG 2. I would be interested to know how this technique
works with older versions of JAWS as well as a range of other screen
reader-browser combinations before considering it accessible.

 

Regards,

 

Roger 

 

 

From: Phil Spencer [mailto:spencer_phil@hotmail.com] 
Sent: Thursday, 10 May 2012 7:26 PM
To: ax interest list
Subject: H65: Using the title attribute to identify form controls when the
label element cannot be used

 

Hi All,

I have a question that I'm hoping someone may be able to help with regarding
technique H65: Using the title attribute to identify form controls when the
label element cannot be used.

This technique is about using a title attribute to describe a form element
where a label element can't be used for whatever reason, and relates to
several success criteria as listed in the link below:

http://www.w3.org/TR/2012/NOTE-WCAG20-TECHS-20120103/H65

I'm evaluating a web page where this technique has been used in a slightly
different way. The descriptive title attribute has been applied to a span
element that wraps the form element, rather than directly to the element
itself, simplified code snippet follows:

<span title="description of form element"><input type="radio" /></span>

My question is, is this sufficient to meet the various success criteria? I
kind of assumed that it wouldn't be, but when I tested with IE9 and JAWS12
it seemed to work just the same as if the title attribute was directly on
the form element.

Does anyone have any experience with this? Is the JAWS / IE behaviour likely
to be repeated with other browser / AT combinations?

Many thanks in advance,

Phil Spencer.
Received on Thursday, 10 May 2012 10:54:10 GMT

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