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RE: practical info for creating accessible web pages

From: Mike Paciello <paciello@webable.com>
Date: Fri, 5 May 2000 10:42:18 -0400
To: "Denis Anson" <danson@miseri.edu>, "WAI UA Group" <w3c-wai-ua@w3.org>
Message-ID: <LPBBLAFOCBGBPOEHHLNGKEFMCFAA.paciello@webable.com>
This is not an unusual response and one I hear quite frequently from
clients. There appear to be several reasons for the viewpoint -- some which
are valid, some are invalid, and some philosophical.

The WAI is an invaluable organization/resource and the central repository
for web accessibility. All those who work for the program office or within
the various working groups have worked diligently for the past 3 years to
deliver the right "goods" as it were.

No one has made the claim that the WAI guidelines and tools are THE absolute
answer. No one has made the claim that these guidelines/tools are perfect.
On the other hand, the WAI program office has continually put out requests
to its member organizations for support at every level, including the
quality and legitimacy of their current recommendations.

I doubt there's a single person within the WAI framework who doesn't believe
that things can be inproved -- it's a natural part of the standards
evolutionary process. Given time, I believe most of the kinks will be worked
out. Until then, it's up to the rest of us to support and mediate.

- Mike

> -----Original Message-----
> From: w3c-wai-ua-request@w3.org [mailto:w3c-wai-ua-request@w3.org]On
> Behalf Of Denis Anson
> Sent: Friday, May 05, 2000 9:05 AM
> To: WAI UA Group
> Subject: FW: practical info for creating accessible web pages
> Thought you might find this critique interesting...
> Denis
> -----Original Message-----
> From: * WEB http://www.rit.edu/~easi
> [mailto:EASI@MAELSTROM.STJOHNS.EDU]On Behalf Of Paul Chapin
> Sent: Friday, May 05, 2000 8:47 AM
> Subject: Re: practical info for creating accessible web pages
> > We often refer folks to the following site:
> > Chisholm, W., Vanderheiden, G., & Jacobs, I. (1999). Web content
> > accessibility guidelines 1.0 - W3C recommendation 5-May-1999.
> > http://www.w3.org/TR/WAI-WEBCONTENT/wai-pageauth.html
> I'm sorry, but I find the stuff from www.w3.org to be pretty
> useless.  It's
> long winded, confusingly organized (it's hypertext taken to an
> extreme), and
> full of recommendations that are either not essential (use cascading
> spreedsheet instead of blockquote to indent) or pointless (use
> longdesc tag
> dispite the fact that none of the current common browsers support
> longdesc).
> If I pointed my users to those pages, they would take one look at them,
> decide either I was out of my mind or that making pages
> accessible would be
> a massive undertaking, and abandon any attempt at accessibility.
> The guidelines were clearly written by programmers and html geeks who were
> much more interested in conceptual purity than getting the job done.
> Paul Chapin
> Curricular Computing Specialist
> Amherst College
> http://www.amherst.edu/~pdchapin
> Check the URL below to enter your institutions
> Web page in EASI's Barrier-free Web Contest
> http://www.rit.edu/~easi
Received on Friday, 5 May 2000 10:39:16 UTC

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