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XHTML2, accessibility concerns with nested hyperlinks

From: Ben Meadowcroft <cee.plus@virgin.net>
Date: Thu, 26 Jun 2003 10:30:50 +0100
Message-ID: <00c201c33bc5$a28afe40$4ff487d9@BensPC>
To: <www-html@w3.org>

given the href attribute collection being available to nearly every element
I am concerned about the effect on the accessibility of XHTML 2 documents

http://www.w3.org/TR/xhtml2/mod-attribute-collections.html#col_Hypertext

For example in current (X)HTML nested hyperlinks are explicitly disallowed,
for example:

<a href="http://www.example.org/">Some text <a
href="http://www.example.com/more">More text</a> Yet more text</a>

however in the current XHTML 2 proposal we have the state that two elements
can both be hyperlinks and be nested, for example:

<ul>
<li href="http://www.example.org/">some <span
href=http://www.example.com/more>more</span> text</li>
</ul>

My concern is how nested links would be presented to users of non visual
browsers? I am reminded of the concerns raised in the WCAG 1.0 (
http://www.w3.org/TR/WCAG10/wai-pageauth.html#tech-divide-links ) where we
it is written "render adjacent links distinctly, include non-link, printable
characters (surrounded by spaces) between adjacent links."

I think this is a legitimate area of concern as this situation was not
previously possible in HTML (as per my first example), it is a new concern
in XHTML2 and should be investigated.

-- 
Ben Meadowcroft
http://www.benmeadowcroft.com/
Received on Thursday, 26 June 2003 05:30:51 GMT

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