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RE: What's the true value of accessibility accreditation badges?

From: John Foliot <john@foliot.ca>
Date: Tue, 15 Jan 2013 08:13:01 -0800
To: "'Dr Jonathan Hassell'" <jonathanhassell@yahoo.co.uk>, <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Message-ID: <002901cdf33b$331a8b10$994fa130$@ca>
Hi Jonathan,


Sadly, I believe that the true value is something close to nothing - a
lesson I thought we learned many years ago. 


I say this because these types of badges provide a false sense of
"compliance" while at the same time (once again) distilling accessibility
down to nothing but a checklist of does and don'ts, with little to no
thought applied in the process.


Most modern web content today is dynamic, rather than static, which also
means that most modern content is changing at various rates of speed, and a
'badge' at best confirms a snapshot of compliance at the time of the
evaluation, which could have been yesterday, a week ago, or 7 years ago: the
end user has no idea, and the value of the badge is meaningless to most
users anyway.


About the only redeeming feature of a badge is in raising awareness amongst
developers, which has some limited value; however those developers who are
going to care are not going to seek out a badge (what a dated concept
anyway), but rather do the heavy lifting and work towards results.  I mean,
if all you really want is a badge, insert this into your source-code:


<img src=http://www.un.org/esa/socdev/enable/disbobby.gif alt="Bobby






From: Dr Jonathan Hassell [mailto:jonathanhassell@yahoo.co.uk] 
Sent: Tuesday, January 15, 2013 4:31 AM
To: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Subject: What's the true value of accessibility accreditation badges?


>From WCAG 2.0 AA and Section 508 VPATs to RNIB/AbilityNet Surf Right, DAC
and Shaw Trust accreditation, there are a lot of accessibility conformance
badges out there. 


And a free scheme to accelerate accessibility of websites has just been
introduced by the Hong Kong government, using yet another new set of


So I thought it was about time to have a better think about what the true
value of accessibility badges is, both to the organisations that buy them,
and to the disabled people who use their sites.


I've written a blog about it:  5 things you should know before buying
accessibility audit and accreditation services


I'd love for you guys to read it, and let me know what you think.


Best regards





Prof Jonathan Hassell
Director, Hassell Inclusion

Blog: http://hassellinclusion.com <http://hassellinclusion.com/> 
Twitter: http://twitter.com/jonhassell


Received on Tuesday, 15 January 2013 16:13:49 UTC

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