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

From: Al Gilman <Alfred.S.Gilman@ieee.org>
Date: Mon, 14 Apr 2008 08:07:56 -0400
Message-Id: <35C11FF1-B365-49E2-B036-12EFDD172D87@ieee.org>
Cc: Steven Faulkner <faulkner.steve@gmail.com>, HTML WG <public-html@w3.org>, "Michael(tm) Smith" <mike@w3.org>, "Gregory J. Rosmaita" <oedipus@hicom.net>, wai-xtech@w3.org, public html for all <list@html4all.org>
To: Dan Connolly <connolly@w3.org>

On 11 Apr 2008, at 11:22 AM, Dan Connolly wrote:
> On Fri, 2008-04-11 at 09:23 +0100, Steven Faulkner wrote:
>> Gregory, can you add this issue to the issue tracker. thanks.
>> issue: IMG section of HTML5 draft contradicts WCAG 1 & WCAG 2  
>> (draft).
> Are you sure you want this issue to be separate from issue 31?
> ISSUE-31 missing-alt Should img without alt ever be conforming
> http://www.w3.org/html/wg/tracker/issues/31

** on the process:

I think that you can take my statement that "the editor has not
addressed what we told you already" as authoritative.

The rest of what comes below is personal input, not backed by
Group review and consensus.

** on the product:

Yes, on balance they should best be separated.  They are related,
but resolving one does not necessarily resolve the other.  Either way.

I think you might understand the separation if we say that the
WCAG contradiction problem is a requirements issue and the
empty-vs-missing-@alt issue is a design issue.

In our original input we tried to refine the question.


WCAG2 is most helpful in understanding the difference.  WCAG2 clearly
requires some alternate, text content for things like the Rorschach
test, and describes how that text differs from the common notion
of an 'equivalent.'  The requirements issue of when and what kind of
alternate content is required can be resolved and still leave open how
the required information is provided by the format.  The glaring
example is the <figure> construct which has more built-in information
than simply an <img>.  See also the "Name From" concept in the WAI-ARIA


Again, this is a reiteration:

By the continuity (minimize change) values of the HTML WG, it is the
change that must demonstrate necessity.  So far nobody has demonstrated
the necessity of making @alt optional.

Not changes from the HTML5 baseline, but changes from the testable
assertions that accessibility checkers as implemented now are coded
to check.  That's what needs to bear the burden of proof.

Although user issues are to be given some preference over toolsmith
issues, the accessibility checker tools are still bona-fide  
Thrashing them is not to be done lightly.  And, I predict, that
WAI will suggest in the area of accessibility that the consumers
have given the toolsmiths a proxy that ups the importance of this
stakeholder group where these requirements are concerned.

So the previous input concluded  that the draft should be fixed to
_keep_ it required until an alternate plan for providing the information
required by WCAG is available, and there is agreement including
the spokespeople for the accessibility interest that the gains
from the changes are great enough to justify the pains.

[or impasse, vote, etc -- but we're too young in the process to
be thinking in those terms.]

> It's straightforward to change the short description of an issue.
> [...]
>> There has been no response from the HTML WG  to the PF WG in  
>> regards to this.
> Right; the PF WG request is still pending...

But see our earlier message cited above that the Editor seems not to
have considered in his review of the discussion.

>> It is requested that this issue remain open until:
>> Consensus has been reached by the HTML WG on normative/informative
>> statements within the HTML 5 spec regarding the alt and its uses  
>> or if
>> consensus cannot be reached, the issue is brought to a formal vote.
> We don't current have technical support for the distinction
> between "editor is done considering input so far" and "test
> cases are done and the wg has decided the issue".
> I need to think some more about how to handle cases
> where "editor is done considering input so far" and
> the outcome should be reviewed by more than just the

Agreed.  I'm not particularly aware of any group that has solved
this well.


>> [1]http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/wai-xtech/2007Oct/0044.html
>> [2]http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-html/2008Feb/0082.html
>> [3] http://www.w3.org/html/wg/tracker/actions/54
> -- 
> Dan Connolly, W3C http://www.w3.org/People/Connolly/
> gpg D3C2 887B 0F92 6005 C541  0875 0F91 96DE 6E52 C29E
Received on Monday, 14 April 2008 12:08:46 UTC

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