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[RFC] Issue Tracker Accessibility

From: Gregory J. Rosmaita <unagi69@concentric.net>
Date: Mon, 17 Dec 2007 12:34:54 -0500 (EST)
To: <wai-xtech@w3.org>, <oedipus@hicom.net>
Message-Id: <20071217173454.A00D33C1C@theseus.cnc.net>

this is a draft emessage which will be cross-posted to the following:


The use of repetitive/identical link text which points to different 
resources in the Issue Tracker template violates the W3C's Web Content 
Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) upon which W3C collaborative tools have
a dependency -- in particular, Guideline 13, where it states:

13.1 Clearly identify the target of each link. [Priority 2] 

Link text should be meaningful enough to make sense when read out 
of context -- either on its own or as part of a sequence of links. 
Link text should also be terse. For example, in HTML, write 
"Information about version 4.3" instead of "click here". In 
addition to clear link text, content developers may further clarify
the target of a link with an informative link title (e.g., in HTML,
the "title" attribute).

Techniques for checkpoint 13.1

WCAG 1.0 defines quote Link text unquote as

The rendered text content of a link. 


A more advanced technique than that used in the citation from WCAG 1.0, 
which would cleanly and clearly address this volation of a WCAG 
checkpoint, can be found in the Techniques document for WCAG 2.0:

<q cite="http://www.w3.org/TR/WCAG20-TECHS/C7.html">

The objective of this technique is to supplement the link text by adding 
additional text that describes the unique function of the link but styling 
the additional text so that it is not rendered on the screen by user 
agents that support CSS. When information in the surrounding context is 
needed to interpret the displayed link text, this technique provides a 
complete description of the link unique function while permitting the less 
complete text to be displayed.

This technique works by creating a CSS selector to target text that is to 
be hidden. The rule set for the selector places the text to be hidden in 
a 1-pixel box with overflow hidden, and positions the text outside of the 
viewport. This ensures the text does not display on screen but remains 
accessible to assistive technologies such as screen readers and braille 
displays. Note that the technique does not use visibility:hidden or 
display:none properties, since these can have the unintentional effect of 
hiding the text from assistive technology in addition to preventing 
on-screen display.

Using, as an example, the HTML WG's Issue Tracker's "sidebar" DIV, 
applying this technique would result in the following code:

<!-- ... -->

<style type="text/css">
a span { height: 1px; width: 1px; position: absolute; overflow: hidden; top: -10px; }

<!-- ... -->

<div id="sidebar">
  <div id="navigation">
  <h3><a href='http://www.w3.org/html/wg/'>HTML Issue Tracking</a> Issue Tracking</h3>
    <li><a href="http://www.w3.org/html/wg/tracker/">Summary</a></li>
     <ul><li><a href="http://www.w3.org/html/wg/tracker/issues/open">Open<span> Issues</span></a></li>
         <li><a href="http://www.w3.org/html/wg/tracker/issues/closed">Closed<span> Issues</span></a></li>
         <li><a href="http://www.w3.org/html/wg/tracker/issues">All<span> Issues</span></a></li>
         <li><a href="http://www.w3.org/html/wg/tracker/issues/new">Create<span> An Issue</span></a></li>
  <ul><li><a href="http://www.w3.org/html/wg/tracker/actions/open">Open<span> Actions</span></a></li>
      <li><a href="http://www.w3.org/html/wg/tracker/actions/overdue">Overdue<span> Actions</span></a></li>
      <li><a href="http://www.w3.org/html/wg/tracker/actions/closed">Closed<span> Actions</span></a></li>
      <li><a href="http://www.w3.org/html/wg/tracker/actions/pendingreview"><span>Actions </span>Pending Review</a></li>
      <li><a href="http://www.w3.org/html/wg/tracker/actions">All<span> Actions</span></a></li>
  <li><a href="http://www.w3.org/html/wg/tracker/users">Users</a>
  <ul><li><a href='http://www.w3.org/html/wg/tracker/users/my'><em>My</em> Tracker</a></li></ul>
  <li><a href="http://www.w3.org/html/wg/tracker/products">Products</a></li>
  <li><a href="http://www.w3.org/html/wg/tracker/agenda">Agenda planning</a></li>
  <li><a href="http://www.w3.org/html/wg/tracker/resolutions">Resolutions</a></li> 

<div id="trackerinfo">
  Generated by <a href="http://www.w3.org/2005/06/tracker/">Tracker</a><br /> - Version 1.10

thank you for your attention to this important matter,

"He who lives on Hope, dies farting."
  -- Benjamin Franklin, Poor Richard's Almanack
Gregory J. Rosmaita, unagi69@concentric.net
Camera Obscura: http://www.hicom.net/~oedipus/
Received on Monday, 17 December 2007 17:35:13 UTC

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