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W3C Advisory Committee Response to Accessibility Project




The W3C Advisory Committee (representatives of our member companies and
organizations) met in the UK on Wednesday and Thursday, January 15 and 16,
1997.  The W3C staff (primarily Daniel Dardailler and Jim Miller) outlined
the proposal you have all seen.  This was followed by a discussion,
prompted by Murray Malone, on the proposal.  The proposal was well received
and the discussion was uniformly positive.  Several members stepped up to
support the idea of such a project.

There was a separate discussion, prompted by another proposed
activity, that has some bearing on our project.  In general, the
membership has warned us to take special care when considering
externally funded projects (the worry was over projects coming with
their own agenda and money but carrying no interest for the majority
of members). The W3C staff and the members at the meeting are in
agreement that all projects must be presented to the W3C member
companies with a full briefing package, and will be judged on their
merits.
Funding possibilities must be included with the briefing in order to
assess the impact of the project on overall W3C resources, but full
external funding does not mean that the project will be "rubber stamped" by
the membership.  There is no reason to believe that this will cause any
problem with the Accessibility project, since it has both member and staff
support.

As we said in Washington, our next step is to produce this briefing
package and issue it together with a Call for Participation for a
Workshop the week of the WWW6th conference in April.  Daniel
Dardailler is in charge of this, and will work on preparing the
initial package with your help.  The package must then be reviewed by
Jim Miller.  We will then forward it to this list and the W3C
management team before submitting it to the membership (each review
will be fast; we understand the urgency involved).

Our basis for this document is of course the proposal you all had in hand
at the White House meeting.  We need to adapt this proposal to our
processes and definitions, and then we need to augment this with help from
the Disability Organizations with whom we are working.  Please be prepared
to respond quickly when you receive the proposed briefing package
(hopefully by February 3), since we will need to receive your advice, edit
the package, and forward it on with lightning speed.

Best regards and many thanks for your help.