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Re: default subject for feedback mailto: link

From: Jukka K. Korpela <jkorpela@cs.tut.fi>
Date: Fri, 4 Jun 2004 09:46:02 +0300 (EEST)
To: "www-validator@w3.org Validator" <www-validator@w3.org>
Message-ID: <Pine.GSO.4.58.0406040932560.14384@korppi.cs.tut.fi>

On Fri, 4 Jun 2004, olivier Thereaux wrote:

> In other words, if there was another default subject such as "feedback
> on error message [XXX]" or no default subject, I am afraid we'd get a
> fair share of calls for help without subject or claiming to be
> feedback.

If you ask me, a completely dummy Subject line is better than a misleading
Subject line.

> One idea would be to have two links - one for help and another for
> feedback -.

And maybe a third one for the rare situation where someone wants to
suggest a better wording for the error message.

But in any case, none of these texts would tell the user what he is
actually doing: he is sending a message to a discussion forum.
There is no guarantee that the user ever sees any answers or comments sent
to the list. It is normal mailing list practice to send to the list only,
not both the list and the sender, with the assumption that the sender has
subscribed to the list.

So as a _minimal_ fix, if those links are preserved (don't ask _me_ what
their ultimate purpose is), they should be properly labelled, e.g.
"(Comment on the message in a discussion list:
<a href="mailto:www-validator@w3.org?Subject=...">Error message #nn</a>)"
where ... is effectively something like
"[www-validator list] Error message #nn"
and users should be _discouraged_ from changing the Subject line, except
by _appending_ a few words that describe the nature of their comment,
question, or suggestion.

Note that the current link texts violate the accessibility rule that
links with different destinations on a page must have different link
texts; here the "destinations" differ if the error numbers differ.

-- 
Jukka "Yucca" Korpela, http://www.cs.tut.fi/~jkorpela/
Received on Friday, 4 June 2004 02:46:04 GMT

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