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Re: Administrative interfaces

From: Ramón Corominas <listas@ramoncorominas.com>
Date: Wed, 12 Sep 2012 00:02:37 +0200
Message-ID: <504FB4FD.2070900@ramoncorominas.com>
To: Christian Biggins <cbiggins@gmail.com>
CC: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Hi all,

Although I agree with all the ethical/moral debate and other 
technical/practical reasons, I think that, from a "compliance" point of 
view the requirement would probably be less strong than that for the 
public website.

According to WCAG 2.0 (and assuming we are talking about the "Web 
Content" part of the administrative interface), the requirement can be 
significantly lower in a closed environment. We might be able to ensure 
accessibility with less effort, since we could probably know in advance 
which combination of OS/browser/AT will be used within the organisation.

For example, imagine a -horrible- administrative interface that is 
entirely based on Flash. Since Flash can only be made accessible on 
Windows, it will (IMO) never be compliant on a public, World-Wide-Web 
environment, where users could be using MacOS or Linux. But, if the 
company has a policy where users MUST use Windows with IE9 and JAWS (for 
example), then we know that the interface can comply.

In any case, all the above assumes that there is at least ONE 
environment where this private administrative interface will be 
accessible...

But, the real question is: Who defines the accessibility requirements? 
WCAG is only a set of guidelines that can be used to test accessibility 
according to a specified target. This target is defined by the 
organisation or, in some cases, by laws. So, does the law in your 
country require that these administrative interfaces are accessible?

And, in any case, imagine that you are the only employee of your online 
sales company (and you don't have a disability). You could be required 
to provide an accessible public website, but it would not be reasonable 
to require you to develop a new accessible interface that nobody needs.

Regards,
Ramón.


Christian wrote:

> I was wondering whether or not an administrative interface for a website 
> should also be compliant? 
> 
> Personally I would think it should, but clearly there is a fairly 
> weighty argument against the additional work, especially if you are 
> controlling who can and cannot access the interface. Granted if you hire 
> somebody who relies on the use of assistive technologies, you would need 
> to revisit, but would it be a requirement?
Received on Tuesday, 11 September 2012 22:03:13 UTC

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