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Re: WCAG 2 response to WG response

From: Loretta Guarino Reid <lorettaguarino@google.com>
Date: Tue, 11 Dec 2007 15:41:39 -0800
Message-ID: <824e742c0712111541r67176bfch5ac48cf7de55d858@mail.gmail.com>
To: "Roger Hudson" <rhudson@usability.com.au>
Cc: public-comments-wcag20@w3.org

Yes, although the working group recognizes that the link list
mechanism provided by user agents and assistive technology will
provide best results when SC2.4.8 is satisfied, we also believe there
are pages where satisfying SC 2.4.8 will make the web page generally
more difficult to use for all users because of the redundancy that
would be needed in the link text.

Regards,

Loretta Guarino Reid, WCAG WG Co-Chair
Gregg Vanderheiden, WCAG WG Co-Chair
Michael Cooper, WCAG WG Staff Contact

On behalf of the WCAG Working Group

> ----------------------------------------------------------
> Comment 1: SC 2.4.8 should be at higher level
> Source:
> http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-comments-wcag20/2007Jun/0274.html
> (Issue ID: 2104)
> ----------------------------
> Original Comment:
> ----------------------------
>
> The sufficient techniques for Success Criterion 2.4.4 (level A) do not
> appear to preclude the use of "more" or "click here" links. All that
> is required is the surrounding sentence of paragraph provides a
> context for the link. Clearly, this could result in situations where a
> screen reader user is presented with a list of meaningless links when
> they use the common navigation technique of obtaining a list of links
> on the page with a keyboard shortcut.
>
> Success Criterion 2.4.8 however does appear to use of descriptive and
> meaningful text links. This criterion however is at AAA Level, which
> given the importance of this issue to screen reader users is in my
> view inadequate
>
> Proposed Change:
> SC 2.4.8 should be at AA level.
>
> ---------------------------------------------
> Response from Working Group:
> ---------------------------------------------
>
> The working group recognizes that the link list mechanism provided by
> user agents and assistive technology will provide best results when SC
> 2.4.8 is satisfied.
>
> While the working group encourages authors to make link text as
> descriptive as possible out of context, we do not feel that this
> success criterion can be satisfied for all Web pages. For Example:
> - a page has book titles followed by PDF, HTML, DOC.
> - Article name (long) followed by a sentence and the link "more"
> - GOOGLE search where each entry has text plus the following links
> [translate this page] HTML and [CACHED] and [SIMILAR PAGES]
> - toolbar with menus with an arrow icon - the link says "open".
> Having full links makes the page very cluttered, harder cognitively to
> find things when the same long (sometimes multi-line) text is repeated
> with one word different, and is very long to listen to for those not
> adept at auditory skipping (or where unique information is back end
> loaded)
>
> These issues were considered carefully for a long time, the working
> group feels that having 2.4.4 at Level A and this issue addressed at
> Level AAA strikes the right balance.
>
> While user agent and assistive technology support for finding the link
> context is poorer than we would like, we have checked that there is at
> least one case of support for each of the types of link context we
> have listed as sufficient techniques. So a user who has tabbed to a
> link can ask for those pieces of context without leaving the link.
>
> We hope that if authors satisfy SC 2.4.4 and make link context
> programmatically determinable, user agent developers will find a way
> to let users access the context when needed, such as when the link
> list is created.
>
> The first techniques listed in 2.4.4 are:
> "G91: Providing link text that describes the purpose of a link
> H30: Providing link text that describes the purpose of a link for
> anchor elements (HTML)
>
> --------------------------------
> Response to response
> --------------------------------
> I don't feel that the examples you provide offer sufficient justification
> for doing away with the need to provide descriptive link text. A number of
> techniques could be used to avoid pages which have meaningful links being
> very cluttered where it is harder cognitively to find things.
>
> Your response includes the comment, "The working group recognizes that the
> link list mechanism provided by user agents and assistive technology will
> provide best results when SC2.4.8 is satisfied."
>
> But clearly, you don't recognise the importance of this sufficiently to put
> SC 2.4.8 should be at AA level, where I still believe it should be.
Received on Tuesday, 11 December 2007 23:41:58 UTC

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