Re: Multi-Channel Section First Draft from Ken

Hi Catherine,

Thanks very much for your comments.

I think they are fully in line with my thoughts on the subject.  
Besides W3C work, I also work for an institute with a lot of  
background on Web Accessibility, so when I started working on eGov I  
found myself in many conversations similar to this one.

My understanding is that what eGov people usually calls accessibility  
is not accessibility in the WAI sense, so to say, but in the access to  
information sense as you said; for me this involves discoverability,  
bridging the digital divide and accessibility in the WAI sense. I'd  
say you already stated this.

I'm copying Miguel expecting he will review the new text Ken has and  
make necessary changes to the one he has.
Miguel, if you could do that, add more pointers as you wish and send a  
version, say, by Tuesday, I could add it already to the editor's draft  
so people could see and still have a couple days to comment on it.


Jose M. Alonso <>    W3C/CTIC
eGovernment Lead        

El 15/04/2009, a las 22:10, Catherine Roy escribió:
> Hi Ken,
> I am more comfortable with your proposal with regards to replacing  
> "accessibility" with "availability" though I still think what y'all  
> are talking about is access. I also think that the digital divide  
> encompasses more issues than "device", connectivity and  
> accessibility (such as gender issues, affordability, culture, etc.,  
> as evidenced most notably by the enormous work done in the scope of  
> WSIS) but I understand that you are probably trying to address  
> specific factors.
> However, I must say that I am most uncomfortable with the idea of  
> limited accessibility for the sake of prioritizing greater  
> availability or distribution (such as giving examples of library  
> books and making the analogy with on demand access to closed  
> captioning). As it stands now and as the field of accessibility  
> evolves, I think that these sort of statements could go against  
> policies in certain areas with regards to accessibility of online  
> content and could even be, in certain cases, percieved as  
> discriminatory. Perhaps I misread your article and if so, I  
> apologise but in short, I feel that this document should not make  
> proposals that could be interpreted as suggesting specific policy  
> which could result in limiting access for certain types of  
> populations.
> Best regards,
> Catherine
> -- 
> Catherine Roy
> Chargée de projets
> Communautique
> 514.948.6644, poste 222
> Ken Fischer wrote:
>> I updated the contribution in favor of using availability and  
>> mentioned
>> interoperability and connectivity.  I think device issues though  
>> are not the
>> same as interoperability and I point this out..
>> sibilities-in-distributing-content-to-the-social-web-and-non- 
>> government-webs
>> ites/
>> 	Ken
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: [ 
>> ]
>> On Behalf Of Ken Fischer Sent: Wednesday, April  
>> 15, 2009 1:08 PM
>> To: 'Catherine Roy'; 'eGovIG'
>> Subject: RE: Multi-Channel Section First Draft from Ken
>> Thanks Catehrine.. So basically use digital divide to refer to
>> accessibility,interoperability, and connectivity..
>> Thanks..  I will make those changes..
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: [ 
>> ]
>> On Behalf Of Catherine Roy
>> Sent: Tuesday, April 14, 2009 7:28 PM
>> To: Ken Fischer; 'eGovIG'
>> Subject: Re: Multi-Channel Section First Draft from Ken
>> Hi,
>> I have been following the work of this Working Group through its  
>> mailing list and related information sources since its creation  
>> last year, though this is my first posting to this list. I would  
>> like to comment the content submitted on the multi-channel section.  
>> My comments have to do with the question of how Accessibility is  
>> being proposed to be defined in this section.
>> Accessibility has already been well-documented and defined by W3C,  
>> through WAI, as well as by other related stake-holders (and I think  
>> that so far, the working draft has respected these precedents). I  
>> believe that what is being proposed in this section is therefore a  
>> problem when it lumps together device (interoperability), bandwidth  
>> (connectivity) and access by persons with disabilities  
>> (accessibility) within the general concept of Accessibility. Taken  
>> together, these concepts should be treated within the concept of  
>> universal access or universality (also traditionally defined by W3C).
>> I also think that it is erroneous to leave out accessibility (as  
>> defined by W3C, i.e. catering to the needs of disabled users) when  
>> talking about the digital divide. Although the sentence in question  
>> talks about how the digital divide is *typically* referred to  
>> ("Device and bandwidth issues are typically talked about as the  
>> ‘digital divide’") this could be misconstrued as accessibility  
>> being ouitside the scope of this issue while, in reality, it is  
>> generally widely accepted that accessibility, or lack thereof, is  
>> an important component of the digital divide.
>> Best regards,
>> Catherine

Received on Friday, 17 April 2009 11:28:38 UTC