W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > wai-xtech@w3.org > November 2009

RE: ARIA roles added to the a element should be conforming in HTML5.

From: John Foliot <jfoliot@stanford.edu>
Date: Tue, 10 Nov 2009 10:34:59 -0800 (PST)
To: "'Leif Halvard Silli'" <xn--mlform-iua@xn--mlform-iua.no>, "'Tab Atkins Jr.'" <jackalmage@gmail.com>
Cc: "'Charles McCathieNevile'" <chaals@opera.com>, "'Jonas Sicking'" <jonas@sicking.cc>, "'Lars Gunther'" <gunther@keryx.se>, "'Shelley Powers'" <shelley.just@gmail.com>, "'HTMLWG WG'" <public-html@w3.org>, "'W3C WAI-XTECH'" <wai-xtech@w3.org>
Message-ID: <005601ca6234$8256aba0$870402e0$@edu>
Leif Halvard Silli wrote:
>
> If we want to avoid that H1 elements can be turned into buttons,
> perhaps we should start by making the following non-conforming?
>
> <a href="link"><h1>Heading</h1></a>

Leif,

In my role of supporting a large author base here on campus, it is my 
general experience that 'taking away' things from authors makes them both 
cranky and unwilling to cooperate, whilst handing out enough rope (and 
planning for the odd tangling of said rope) fosters creativity, and 
demonstrates that ensuring accessibility doesn't need to be seen as 
restrictive.

As accessibility advocates, we need to be both open to those who don't have 
the same appreciation we do to some of the finer nuances of our specialty, 
as well as a rich toolbox of techniques and solutions to then help them get 
things right.  We also know that often accessibility is one of the last 
items on the development checklist (it shouldn't be, but it is), and so 
often we get approached at the 11th hour for the "...can you make sure this 
passes..." request, and my having a quick fix of "...add some ARIA roles 
here..." is significantly more palatable then my saying, "...take it back to 
the drawing board and start over...". (You can imagine the response to a 
statement like that 2 days before launch)  That's the real world.

We all can pretty much agree that making an <h1> a 'button' doesn't really 
make a whole lot of semantic sense, but (as someone pointed out earlier) if 
a content author decides, against better recommendations, to make a <h1> a 
button that activates an accordion expansion, then we should be able to 
convey that important information to AT in all its wrongness - not being 
able to do so penalizes the AT user, not the content author.

JF
Received on Tuesday, 10 November 2009 18:35:34 GMT

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