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Binding requirements to priorities [Was: [last call, S2] equivalent (to other content)]

From: Ian Jacobs <ij@w3.org>
Date: Tue, 14 Nov 2000 12:27:33 -0500
Message-ID: <3A117605.489A463F@w3.org>
To: Al Gilman <asgilman@iamdigex.net>
CC: w3c-wai-ua@w3.org
Al Gilman wrote:
> 
> The glossary entry "equivalent (for content)" employs a concept of an
> "equivalency target" which is set apart from "the equivalents" for said
> "equivalency target."

[snip]
 
> In no way did the WCAG mean to indicate that equivalence, as it relates to
> accessibility in content, only applies when one user is a person with a
> disability, or one of the alternative equivalents is incorporated for the
> express purpose of making the ensemble accessible.  These are included in the
> range of "equivalent alternatives" [or equivalently, "alternative equivalents]
> but do not restrict these terms to those cases.

Al,

Our mandate is to create for user agent developers
a set of requirements known to improve accessibility. 
Each requirement must have a known impact on accessibility,
otherwise we have exceeded our charter. 

One of the ways in which the last call UAAG 1.0 ensures that
requirements are relevant to accessibility is to "bind"
the accessibility impact within definitions. This, I believe,
is the essence of the debate we are having on the terms
equivalent, text element, etc. These terms have build-in
accessibility implications, which seems to be the heart
of your objection. So "text equivalent" means more than 
"B is made of text and equals A", it means "B is understandable
to users with disabilities because of the following assumptions,
and B equals A". If WCAG talks about "text equivalents" and they
are not accessible to users with disabilities, what's the point
of talking about them? WCAG won't have done its job if its
requirements don't promote accessibility. UAAG is in the
same boat.

It is possible to remove the access portions from 
the definitions of equivalent, text element, text equivalent, 
etc. However, there are immediate implications to using the
same words without the accessibility binding. If document A is 
the French translation of document B, they can be functional
equivalents. But is it within the scope of UAWG charter
to require user agent developers to provide easy access
to translated materials? 

Questions:

 - Do you think that we need to ensure the binding of each
   requirement to one or more accessibility issuse?

 - If we change the definitions, where do you think we could
   best "recapture" the bindings to accessibility?

Thanks Al,

 _ Ian

-- 
Ian Jacobs (jacobs@w3.org)   http://www.w3.org/People/Jacobs
Tel:                         +1 831 457-2842
Cell:                        +1 917 450-8783
Received on Tuesday, 14 November 2000 12:27:39 GMT

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