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RE: Footnote discussions

From: Bill Kasdorf <bkasdorf@apexcovantage.com>
Date: Fri, 6 Feb 2015 21:18:29 +0000
To: Dave Cramer <dauwhe@gmail.com>, Matt Garrish <matt.garrish@bell.net>
CC: Liam R E Quin <liam@w3.org>, "Siegman, Tzviya - Hoboken" <tsiegman@wiley.com>, Shane McCarron <shane@aptest.com>, David MacDonald <david100@sympatico.ca>, Robert Sanderson <azaroth42@gmail.com>, "George Kerscher" <kerscher@montana.com>, W3C Digital Publishing IG <public-digipub-ig@w3.org>
Message-ID: <CO2PR06MB572B647B31FF3D2F21E5E61DF380@CO2PR06MB572.namprd06.prod.outlook.com>
Plus frankly publishers just plain WANT to control these things and will not accept not being able to.

Doesn't mean the user can't override some things, but you can't eliminate the publisher's ability to design the experience (print or digital) as she wants.

From: Dave Cramer [mailto:dauwhe@gmail.com]
Sent: Friday, February 06, 2015 4:02 PM
To: Matt Garrish
Cc: Bill Kasdorf; Liam R E Quin; Siegman, Tzviya - Hoboken; Shane McCarron; David MacDonald; Robert Sanderson; George Kerscher; W3C Digital Publishing IG
Subject: Re: Footnote discussions

On Fri, Feb 6, 2015 at 1:29 PM, Matt Garrish <matt.garrish@bell.net<mailto:matt.garrish@bell.net>> wrote:

It feels wrong to me (if you can't guess!) that in a digital world publishers should have a say in where notes appear and how. They should only be providing the context for rendering the notes and leave it to the user and their reading system to determine the most appropriate presentation for them. I don't even see this as an "accessibility" issue so much as a simple usability issue for everyone. We all benefit from better control of our reading experiences.

I would agree that "we all benefit from better control of our reading experiences." I would disagree with it being wrong for document authors to have a say in how notes, or any other element, is rendered. Allow users options? Absolutely. Allow users to override author stylesheets? Absolutely. But not to have a say? That seems extreme. Design is one way of communicating the author's intent to the reader. A given design might not work for all readers, but seems to be a worthwhile starting point.

Years ago we published a book by Stephen Colbert. Every paragraph had a marginal note (which would have role="snark" in a perfect world). The placement of those notes in relation to the text they comment on was important to the story. Making them endnotes or popups would not serve the text. I argued against releasing an ebook of the title at the time, because I didn't think we then had the technology to honor the author's intent.


Received on Friday, 6 February 2015 21:18:59 UTC

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