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Re: Discussion: Text Alternative Survey

From: Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch>
Date: Sat, 24 Apr 2010 04:26:01 +0000 (UTC)
To: Laura Carlson <laura.lee.carlson@gmail.com>
Cc: Steven Faulkner <faulkner.steve@gmail.com>, Maciej Stachowiak <mjs@apple.com>, Dave Singer <singer@apple.com>, Matt Morgan-May <mattmay@adobe.com>, HTML Accessibility Task Force <public-html-a11y@w3.org>
Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.4.64.1004240423060.1619@ps20323.dreamhostps.com>
On Fri, 23 Apr 2010, Laura Carlson wrote:
> The title attribute is not up to the job of providing a text
> alternative. It's content is not displayed to the user unless they can
> use a mouse and beforehand know that the content is there.

The whole point of using it in this case is that the AT would use it as a 
source of caption information, so that isn't accurate in HTML5 UAs and ATs.

> The content of the image title attribute is also often not detected by 
> AT by default unless the user makes an explicit choice in their 
> preferences to announce the attribute contents.

The spec proposes to change this. We can't avoid speccing things that 
aren't implemented yet; we'd never add anything new!

> The set of options listed in the suggested text section of this
> proposal uses semantic HTML that is up to the job.

As I understand it the only proposed non-ARIA solution is <figcaption>, 
which is supported even less by ATs than title="".

> Authors are advised to only use the title attribute for "additional
> information" and not as a full equivalent alternative.

The spec doesn't suggest using it as a full equivalent alternative.

> Removing title would make the HTML specification in line with WCAG, and 
> previous authoring practices. http://www.w3.org/TR/WCAG20-TECHS/H33.html

WCAG's recommendations are based on HTML4; the whole point here is to move 
forward. WCAG will need updating for HTML5.

Ian Hickson               U+1047E                )\._.,--....,'``.    fL
http://ln.hixie.ch/       U+263A                /,   _.. \   _\  ;`._ ,.
Things that are impossible just take longer.   `._.-(,_..'--(,_..'`-.;.'
Received on Saturday, 24 April 2010 04:26:31 UTC

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