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[Bug 12708] New: @accesskey: Clarify what it needs in order to have effect

From: <bugzilla@jessica.w3.org>
Date: Fri, 20 May 2011 02:09:52 +0000
To: public-html@w3.org
Message-ID: <bug-12708-2495@http.www.w3.org/Bugs/Public/>

           Summary: @accesskey: Clarify what it needs in order to have
           Product: HTML WG
           Version: unspecified
          Platform: PC
               URL: http://dev.w3.org/html5/spec/editing#the-accesskey-att
        OS/Version: All
            Status: NEW
          Keywords: a11y
          Severity: normal
          Priority: P3
         Component: HTML5 spec (editor: Ian Hickson)
        AssignedTo: ian@hixie.ch
        ReportedBy: xn--mlform-iua@xn--mlform-iua.no
         QAContact: public-html-bugzilla@w3.org
                CC: mike@w3.org, public-html-wg-issue-tracking@w3.org,

ISSUE: In HTML5, @accesskey has become a global attribute - it isn't limited to
only interactive elements anymore. Therefore the fact that @accesskey relies on
the element being focusable or specially focusable in order to have an effect,
should be emphasized.


Inside the second sentence of #the-accesskey-attribute section:

     ]] The accesskey attribute's value is used by the user agent as a guide
for creating a keyboard shortcut that activates or focuses the element.[[,

Add a link on the word 'activates' to #activation
Add a link on the word 'focuses' to #focus-management
(http://dev.w3.org/html5/spec/editing#focus-management ). 

Optionally: In addition, add a sentence or a note which clarifies it more


  Evidence hints that authors sometimes are confused about what @accesskey
needs in order to have any effect. For instance, in W3C's online mailinglist
archives, accesskey="j" is attached to an unfocusable anchor element (without
@href attribute): [*]

 <a name="start295" accesskey="j" id="start295"></a>
 [*] http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-html-a11y/2011Apr/0295

  The intention of the above code is clearly to help readers to  focus on the
message body of each message. However, the accesskey has zero effect (in Opera,
Firefox and Safari) since the element is unfocusable. Thus,
Opera/Firefox/Safari are correctt in not making the above element accessible
via accesskey. (If the mailinglist archive software had added @tabindex too,
then it would/should have worked - but this apparently wasn't realized when the
software was patched:
http://www.w3.org/2004/12/hypermail-w3c-patch/patch/w3c-0.50.patch )


   Opera, Safari, Chrome, Internet Explorer and Firefox deviate slightly from
one another when it comes to the effect of @acckesskey. Probably because they
don't link #focus-management and #activation to @accesskey in the same way.
E.g. an element with @accesskey plus @tabindex will, in Opera  (and, with
certain add-ons, in Firefox too)  fire @onFocus events and @onClick events 
when the accesskey is activated, whereas other UAs do not seem to perform
anything. (Firefox with the Pentadactyl add-on works a bit like Opera.)

JUSTIFICATION - SPEC CLARITY:  When read with great attention, the HTML5 does
hint that the element has to be able to take focus (or be activated), before
@accesskey can be expected have any effect:

]] Each element that can be activated or focused can be assigned a single key
combination to activate it, using the accesskey attribute. [[
[*] http://dev.w3.org/html5/spec/editing#introduction-6

However,  HTML5 spec should spell it out more directly, so that authors as well
as implementors do get this important detail right.

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Received on Friday, 20 May 2011 02:09:53 UTC

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