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Re: PDF's Exposed via Web Pages and Accessibility

From: Duff Johnson <duff@duff-johnson.com>
Date: Tue, 5 Jan 2016 17:00:30 -0500
Message-Id: <F03F174E-EBD0-492F-9CA9-5E9CF4976C48@duff-johnson.com>
To: WAI Interest Group <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Hi Paul,

> I have been reviewing the proposed refresh of the United States of America Section 508 regulation, which specifically calls out using PDF/UA when embedding PDF files into web pages: http://www.access-board.gov/guidelines-and-standards/communications-and-it/about-the-ict-refresh
> In looking at this issue from an architectural perspective, it seems like placing some form of validator in the delivery channels from PDF creator to web page delivery would likely be necessary to insure all PDF’s made available for web page deployment were PDF/UA compliant.

Not necessarily. There are other ways to skin this cat.

Unlike WCAG 2.0, PDF/UA conformance *requires* a PDF/UA “flag" be present in the file’s metadata. 

The flag represents the author’s assurance that the file complies with all provisions of the specification; i.e., that the author has performed the necessary human checks.

There are several ways to use this fact in policy terms. If you see the PDF/UA flag, for example, assume the file is “good” (WCAG 2.0 considerations notwithstanding… that’s a separate question). If the file then proves (spot-checking, whatever) to be “bad” then you have what you need to… .ah…. create accountability.

All the best,

Duff Johnson

PDF Association Executive Director
ISO 32000 (PDF) Intl. Project Co-Leader, US Chair
ISO 14289 (PDF/UA) Intl. Project Co-Leader, US Chair
Independent Consultant

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Received on Tuesday, 5 January 2016 22:01:02 UTC

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