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RE: ISSUE-30: longdesc "InstateLongdesc" - outlook

From: John Foliot <john@foliot.ca>
Date: Fri, 7 Sep 2012 10:36:47 -0700
To: "'Sam Ruby'" <rubys@intertwingly.net>, "'Steve Faulkner'" <faulkner.steve@gmail.com>
Cc: "'HTML WG'" <public-html@w3.org>, "'Robin Berjon'" <robin@berjon.com>, "'Maciej Stachowiak'" <mjs@apple.com>, "'Philippe Le Hegaret'" <plh@w3.org>, "'Judy Brewer'" <jbrewer@w3.org>, "'Janina Sajka'" <janina@rednote.net>, "'Laura Carlson'" <laura.lee.carlson@gmail.com>, "'HTML Accessibility Task Force'" <public-html-a11y@w3.org>, "'Tim Berners-Lee'" <timbl@w3.org>, "'W3C WAI Protocols & Formats'" <w3c-wai-pf@w3.org>, "'Michael Cooper'" <cooper@w3.org>, "'Jeff Jaffe'" <jeff@w3.org>
Message-ID: <018301cd8d1f$5dd4eb70$197ec250$@ca>
Sam Ruby wrote
> On 09/06/2012 09:21 AM, Steve Faulkner wrote:
> > Hi Sam,
> >
> > As one of the people who has spent the last 5 years working on
> getting
> > ARIA integrated into HTML5 I find the suggestion of removing it
> > entirely because of one isolated issue, odiuous and inappropriate.
> >
> > We have worked through many, many issues on ARIA integration and
> while
> > I am not entirely satisfied with the result, it is much better to
> have
> > it in than out. I cannot fathom why this would be even be suggested.
> >
> > I for one would rigorously object to any such moves.

+1 to Steve's rigorous objection. 

I also wonder aloud if the idea of completely ripping ARIA out of HTML5 at
this point in the game has broad support from the larger HTML5 Working Group
- have the Chairs polled the WG to see how they feel about such a radical
idea at this time?

> Acknowledged.
> Recapping the path that got us to this point:
>   * We had extensive discussion over a long period of time which
>     produced two proposals, and a decision that chose one of the two.

A decision that many feel is wrong, that over-stepped its Mandated bounds,
and that directly ignored another Domain WG's direct and documented
objections. This decision was taken by the Chairs, and is of serious enough
concern that an Expedited Review of the decision by the W3C Director is now
underway. It is not unreasonable then to suggest that perhaps the Chairs
made a mistake. Everyone makes mistakes, but failing to own your mistakes
(or possible mistakes) makes a bad scenario worse, and it seems here that
you are suggesting that this problem is of someone else's making.

>   * This produced a Formal Objection that appears to reject both
>     proposals as acceptable solutions (which indicates a lack of
>     participation) and cites an unwillingness to "cede decisions"

Actually, your characterization of the situation is both na´ve and might I
say false. There has been a lot of "participation" in the discussions
leading up to the Chairs decision, including a lengthy Face-to-Face
discussion in Mountain View not so long ago that you Sam were party to. 

Prior to the Decision, the Chairs were informed, both via this list as well
as verbally that one of the proposals was stepping into work that belonged
to, and with, another Working Group (work that this Working Group was
mandated to do), and that proceeding to re-write the processing rules for
ARIA had a direct and negative impact on another Candidate Recommendation at
the W3C. The Chairs chose to ignore those warnings: it was the Chairs that
were unwilling to "cede" anything to the larger W3C effort here, proceeding
to attempt to re-write the ARIA specification despite vigorous objection.

>   I hope you will agree that a lack of participation coupled with an
>   unwillingness to cede decisions is a particularly deadly combination.

While "deadly" might be a bit hyperbolic, I will agree that it is a complex
and non-productive combination. Suggesting that this is actually where we
are today however is a bit of a leap, as while things may not be heading in
a direction that the Chairs might like to see, we are neither stalled nor at
an absolute impasse, as we wait for a decision from the Director. 

> The current state:
>    * We have a set of proposals for the path forward and -- this is
>      the key part -- NO ACTIVE DISCUSSION OR SCHEDULE.  I will note
>      that one of those proposals is from a co-editor of ARIA 1.0
>      itself.

This is blatantly false.

1) "... a set of proposals for the path forward..."

No Sam, we currently have ONE PROPOSAL that the Chairs selected
(http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-html/2012Aug/0159.html), ONE
PROPOSAL that Ted has integrated into the Draft Spec
(http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-html/2012Aug/0396.html), and ONE
PROPOSAL that is currently the subject of an Expedited Formal Objection



In a series of emails I wrote to the Chairs in July
(http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-html/2012Jul/0113.html) I
specifically and pointedly asked the Chairs if they could share an actual
Schedule with us with regard to the processing of Issues 204, 30, and 203.
That request was met with a vague, hand-waving indication that lacked any
specifics. You Sam, the Chairs, have chosen to keep the Scheduling here
loose, and to now cite this as a reason to eject ARIA from HTML5 is beyond
the depths of credibility.

I can perhaps understand the Chairs concern that the timing and scheduling
of the Director's response, and the W3C directive to postpone work on Issue
30 as well, may place other timelines at risk, but that is the direct fault
of the Chairs heading in: you have no one to blame but yourselves. YOU did
not provide a specific timeline, YOU did not listen to another WG's direct
objections, and YOU chose a proposal that led to 2 Formal Objections,
including one that is now under Expedited Review. With regard to the last
point, the Chairs had ample warning that proceeding with a decision that
sought to impact another Candidate Recommendation would most certainly be
met with a Formal Objection, and YOU chose to ignore that warning.

Own your mistakes Sam.

> The paths forward:
> 1) Active and vigorous discussion resumes, leading to the selection of
>     one preferred alternative that everybody can live with.  If that
>     occurs, I can assure you that the chairs will quickly and
>     enthusiastically adopt said consensus.

Am I to then read here that the Chairs will ask the Editors to set aside the
currently implemented decision, and will re-open Issue 204? While it is true
that there are currently 2 bugs in Bugzilla that are seeking to put lipstick
on the pig, if you want real and vigorous discussion that suggests a
changing of the Spec Text, then it seems the only way that can happen is to
re-open the Issue.

> 2) Split out the portions where there is overlapping jurisdictions
>     and make it a joint deliverable.

"...a joint deliverable".  Perhaps one of us missed a memo Sam, but is that
not currently the mandate of the HTML5 Accessibility Task Force?

The problem here is that somehow the HTML5 Chairs appear to have lost sight
of this W3C Mandate, and the charters under which the Task Force was struck:

	"The task force combines participation from the PFWG and the HTML
WG. Accessibility specialists from the PFWG provide input on accessibility
needs and solutions. Architects from the HTML WG provide input on
architectural goals and non-accessibility considerations."

However, when the HTML5 Chairs specifically and directly ignore the
recommendations of their "(equal) partner" Working Group, then it no longer
becomes a joint deliverable, but rather a force-fed exercise that results in
(to no surprise) animosity, frustration, gridlock, and Formal Objections.

>     This is the less preferred
>     of the two approaches.  I don't even know what the impact of
>     doing so would be, but given that discussion has ceased, it would
>     only be prudent to scope out such, and I've asked Robin to do so.

As is the Chairs right. What productive effort this will produce remains
extremely unclear, but if you want to start Robin off by chasing his tail,
by all means have at it.

Received on Friday, 7 September 2012 17:37:40 UTC

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