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Re: Issue-9 (video-accessibility): Chairs Solicit Proposals

From: Maciej Stachowiak <mjs@apple.com>
Date: Thu, 04 Mar 2010 01:54:53 -0800
Cc: Sam Ruby <rubys@intertwingly.net>, HTML WG <public-html@w3.org>
Message-id: <EA232EA3-5F95-4C4A-9D9B-5559D86C8BA8@apple.com>
To: Matt May <mattmay@adobe.com>, Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch>, Silvia Pfeiffer <silviapfeiffer1@gmail.com>

I'd like to comment a few of the messages on this thread. In general,  
we do not want issues sitting open indefinitely. To grossly  
oversimplify, one of our top goals is to continually minimize the  
number of issues on this list that do not have a deadline listed: <http://dev.w3.org/html5/status/issue-status.html 
 >. We are relatively flexible about the specific deadlines and the  
exact actions to take, but we don't want issues to just sit there  
without anyone signed up to take the next step. We believe that if an  
issue is truly a blocker, someone needs to be actually working on it.

In the case of ISSUE-9 in particular, we are aware of two proposals  
that are at a highly advanced state. We think it is likely the HTML  
Accessibility Task Force will endorse them in some form and submit  
them as Task Force recommendations well ahead of the one-month  
deadline. Even if that does not happen, they could be submitted to the  
HTML WG by their authors while A11Y TF discussions continue.

With those thoughts in mind, here are a few replies to specific points:


On Mar 3, 2010, at 9:02 AM, Matt May wrote:

> On Mar 3, 2010, at 9:58 AM, Sam Ruby wrote:
>
>> If no Change Proposals are written by April 5, 2010 this issue will
>> be closed without prejudice.
>
> I don't see what purpose this serves. ISSUE-9 is one of the broadest  
> in terms of the problem set and the work that remains to be done.  
> From what I've seen of the discussion, each of the stakeholders has  
> their own vision of how to proceed. Putting a deadline of one month  
> (during which, BTW, many if not most accessibility people are  
> preparing for and traveling to their largest conference of the year)  
> to solve video accessibility is setting up the group for either a  
> failure to meet the date, or a rushed proposal that may not fully  
> address accessibility issues and doesn't have the support of the  
> vendors who would implement the contents of the CP.
>
> What I want to know is, given there's an entire media accessibility  
> subgroup[1] working on this, have the chairs asked any of them if  
> this timeline is even remotely achievable? It seems that's a more  
> logical path to a successful proposal than looking at the issues  
> list, picking an oldie, and saying solve it in a month.

Our understanding, based on observing the work of the A11Y TF, and  
based on a conversation I had directly with Silvia, is that there are  
already two proposals which are nearly ready to submit. Given this, it  
seems a one-month timeline is eminently achievable. We would love to  
have more precise time estimates for work on a11y issues from the Task  
Force facilitators, but for lack of that information we have chosen to  
exercise our own judgment.

I note also: if anyone needs more than a month to submit a proposal,  
then all they need to do is ask and volunteer for an extension.


On Mar 3, 2010, at 11:36 AM, Ian Hickson wrote:

> This issue is uncontroversial and will likely result in spec updates  
> in
> the coming months based on the detailed proposals being discussed in  
> depth
> right now. I would recommend not using the change proposal process for
> this topic, and instead letting the regular bug process run its  
> course.


If the proposals under discussion result in changes to the spec that  
everyone finds satisfactory, then there will be no need to continue  
with the Change Proposal process past that point. The Chairs would  
consider that an excellent outcome. In the meantime, we would like to  
see some proposals actually put before the group, instead of holding  
the issue open with no visible progress.



On Mar 3, 2010, at 1:11 PM, Silvia Pfeiffer wrote:

> The hope is that within the next two weeks these two change proposals
> will be agreeable within the Task Force and we can move them into the
> HTML WG.
>
> So, a deadline of 5th April is not unrealistic for *progress* on  
> issue-9.

That is exactly what we hope to see happen. Even if the TF for some  
reason cannot come to consensus on either of these proposals, we would  
like to see something submitted anyway, even if it is not yet a  
recommendation of the Task Force at that point.

> However, it has to be understood that these two change proposals are
> only a start towards media accessibility. They are the most important
> techniques that the browser vendors will need to implement next to
> gain basic media accessibility. There will be a need for more
> techniques, but we will need to gain some experiences with these
> implementations first before moving on. So, even with these two change
> proposals coming in, I would suspect we should not close Issue-9, but
> use it to continue monitoring progress on media accessibility
> features.


Speaking for myself and not necessarily my co-chairs (because I  
haven't asked their opinion): What I would prefer to see is that we  
resolve the issue based on some initial proposals, and then submit any  
proposals for further improvement via the bug process. If the bug  
process turns out to be insufficient for any further proposed  
improvements, then those specific improvements can be escalated to  
their own tracker issues.

I do not think it is wise to continue recycling the same tracker issue  
for multiple rounds of changes. Handling things that way would lead to  
an issue that just stays open indefinitely.

Regards,
Maciej
Received on Thursday, 4 March 2010 09:55:33 UTC

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