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Re: [html4all] New issue: IMG section of HTML5 draft contradicts WCAG 1 & WCAG 2 (draft)

From: Charles McCathieNevile <chaals@opera.com>
Date: Fri, 11 Apr 2008 12:08:50 +0200
To: HTML4All <list@html4all.org>, "Steven Faulkner" <faulkner.steve@gmail.com>
Cc: wai-xtech@w3.org, "Al Gilman" <Alfred.S.Gilman@ieee.org>, "Michael(tm) Smith" <mike@w3.org>, "Dan Connolly" <connolly@w3.org>, "HTML WG" <public-html@w3.org>
Message-ID: <op.t9fyg0vxwxe0ny@widsith.local>

On Fri, 11 Apr 2008 11:29:20 +0200, Henri Sivonen <hsivonen@iki.fi> wrote:

> On Apr 11, 2008, at 11:23, Steven Faulkner wrote:
>> 5.  Conclusion:  barring the introduction of new, good
>> reasons for a change, the failure of the HTML5 draft to make
>> @alt on <img> an across-the-board requirement (even if sometimes
>> it has the value of &quot;&quot;) is a bug.
> Hixie's email on the matter and my previous email(s) on the matter
> gave a reason:
> A piece of software gets images from somewhere and puts them
> automatically out on the Web. What should the developer of that piece
> of software program it to do when an image arrives from whatever pipe
> they arrive from without alternative text? How do you require a
> program to emit something it simply doesn't have without faking it
> with junk?
> (Note: Saying that the program should block until human intervention
> won't be a viable approach. A product that did that would only be
> supplanted by products that don't.

This is not necessarily true. There are plenty of contexts where such  
programs would not be (or even are not) supplanted by others - although in  
some cases that will indeed happen.

> Saying that such products should be
> programmed to output invalid HTML isn't a viable answer, either.

Why not? Almost *every* tool I know of that produces HTML produces invalid  
HTML, so I am not sure how you determine that there is some existential  
reason why this cannot happen.

> Saying that the program should emit alt='' would lose information
> about lack of data vs. marking the image as decorative.

Indeed - I am thoroughly in agreement on this point.

The group might like to consider the relevant parts of the Authoring Tool  
Accessibility Guidelines 1.0 [1] which address this particular problem, or  
their equivalent sections in the ATAG 2 draft [2] (and the suggested  
techniques linked from the relevant aprts of those documents).

This seems not to be a new issue, but a continuation of ISSUE-31

[1] http://www.w3.org/TR/ATAG10 see especially
as well as

For the summary version of ATAG 10 see  
http://www.w3.org/TR/ATAG10/atag10-chklist.html - it is a few screenfuls.

[2] Principles B2.2, B2.3 and B2.4 in section  
http://www.w3.org/TR/ATAG20/#principle-support-author, although note also  
section B3



Charles McCathieNevile  Opera Software, Standards Group
     je parle français -- hablo español -- jeg lærer norsk
http://my.opera.com/chaals   Try Opera 9.5: http://snapshot.opera.com
Received on Friday, 11 April 2008 10:10:08 UTC

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