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RE: Hiding heading level ones

From: Gunderson, Jon R <jongund@illinois.edu>
Date: Tue, 25 Nov 2014 14:43:05 +0000
To: Laura Carlson <lcarlson@d.umn.edu>, w3c-wai-ig <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Message-ID: <46739F12637CC94E82F75FF874E4A147365E76DF@CITESMBX6.ad.uillinois.edu>

One comment on naming.

I would use the CSS class name of "offscreen" instead of "hidden".

"Hidden" can be confused for the hidden attribute in HTML5 and the visibility: hidden property/value in CSS.

The off screen technique to me is a second class technique to making the H1 heading visible to all users.   
It helps everyone orient to the page if the page has a clear title that actually describes the content of the page.
It also helps make sure that the H1 element content is actually accurate title for the page, since everyone, including the developer/content editor can see it.


-----Original Message-----
From: Laura Carlson [mailto:lcarlson@d.umn.edu] 
Sent: Tuesday, November 25, 2014 7:32 AM
To: w3c-wai-ig
Subject: Hiding heading level ones

Hi all,

A Web developer in our marketing department has asked if the following markup, which is meant for use in Drupal themes and Dreamweaver templates throughout the organization, would meet WCAG AA with the notion that screen readers will be able to receive a good heading for the page and some snappy marketing text could go in the <h2>.

.hidden {
position: absolute;
top: -9999px;
left: -9999px;

<h1 class="hidden">Page Title</h1>
 <!-- No other content -->

Thoughts on that markup and WCAG AA?

I stated that if he hides the <h1> he would be locking out people with cognitive and learning disabilities who would benefit from the ability to identify content by a visible <h1>. My advice to him was to keep the <h1> visible and intuitively easy to understand.

I have cited Info and Relationships Success Criteria 1.3.1, "When such relationships are perceivable to one set of users, those relationships can be made to be perceivable to all."

In addition I have pointed him to:

Other thoughts?

Thank you.

Best Regards,

Laura L. Carlson
Information Technology Systems and Services University of Minnesota Duluth Duluth, MN U.S.A. 55812-3009 http://www.d.umn.edu/itss/training/online/webdesign/
Received on Tuesday, 25 November 2014 14:44:03 UTC

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