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Re: WAI-AGE task force

From: Votis Konstantinos <kvotis@iti.gr>
Date: Mon, 9 Feb 2009 17:53:16 +0200
Message-ID: <4E0A4EF371E24BB9AD66D8223184C842@iti168.local>
To: "William Loughborough" <wloughborough@gmail.com>, "Andrew Arch" <andrew@w3.org>
Cc: <public-wai-age@w3.org>
In many cases the development of organization's web sites have been implemented by a subcontracting procedure and even if it will be possible to contact with webmasters and / or amdinistrators i am not sure that we can extract sth interesting form them. From our point of view we have to contact with persons that they are in the top layer of the organization's management. We have tried a similar work but finally we received the following results:

 - Most of ICT applications has developed over the latest years, and the importance of accessibility has only begun to be appreciated in the last two or three years. Any solution that is older than that is unlikely to be fully accessible. Making an existing system accessible is often very difficult and expensive, in much the same way as making an existing building wheelchair-friendly.

  a.. Many developers and designers are not fully equipped with evidence and knowledge related to the need and possibilities for accessibility to their product or service. Consequently, even new developments are not adequately accessible, missing opportunities for tackle this issue at development stage, when costs are compatible and solutions by design can be found, rather than adopting aftermarket or workaround adaptations
  b.. Some market stakeholders believe that creating accessible solutions will have prohibited costs and, at the same time, make them boring and less attractive to the majority of users. Also commissioners of new developments do not know how to specify accessibility requirements or how to test compliance.
  c.. A common issue of many development processes is the friction between the different groups of stakeholders involved in the project because they have different motivations and expectations of what will be delivered and in more general they talk different languages. As an example the developers think in terms of code, the business thinks in terms of business value and interface designers think in terms of customer experience. Reconciling these different languages and in placing the end users at the centre of the design and development, phase can be a challenge. 
  d.. Accessibility regulations and policies will in many cases require that a product has to be accessible to users with a very broad range of functional limitations including individuals who are older and often have multiple functional limitations. Typically, a product will have to be usable by almost any type of user. 
  e.. In most cases, assessment accessibility activities are performed after the development process of them instead of the complete lifecycle as a continuous approach to quality. Early testing can significantly lower the cost of completing and maintaining the developing products. 

Probably, a good solution should be:


  a.. the arrangement of relevant interviews with Developers/designers of applications for people with disabilities as well as with experts and managers from organisations from the e-inclusion area
  b.. distribution of questionnaires to relevant conferences and events (for developers, or for AT technologies) 
  c.. a request for relevant contacts by each beneficiary. All interested parties should provide a contact list that should be contacted by them for interview or distribution of questionaires, based on their activity area and their network of contacts 


Konstantinos Votis
Computer Engineer & Informatics, Msc, MBA
Research Associate
Informatics and Telematics Institute
Centre for Research and Technology Hellas
6th Klm. Charilaou - Thermi Road
P.O. BOX 60361 GR - 570 01
Thessaloniki - Greece
Tel.: +30-2311-257722 
Fax : +30-2310-474128 
E-mail : kvotis@iti.gr

  ----- Original Message ----- 
  From: William Loughborough 
  To: Andrew Arch 
  Cc: public-wai-age@w3.org 
  Sent: Monday, February 09, 2009 5:08 PM
  Subject: Re: WAI-AGE task force

  I would like to see a more "pro-active" approach to this important matter.

  The important thing is to try to make contact with *anybody* responsible for the Website. Somehow there should be a more imperative tone to asking for a response. 

  All of the material in this document seems like it's trying to placate offenders, who are after all mostly either unaware of accessibility rules or disinterested in dealing with them. The latter are basically scofflaws and we need to find some way to help them get over their attitude in this regard.

  The bottom line of all this is that what they are doing is against the law and there are always consequences from ignoring that.

  Everyone I know who has been trying the methods outlined here has had essentially zero results therefrom. We need to figure out how to make this particular cheese more binding!


  On Mon, Feb 9, 2009 at 5:52 AM, Andrew Arch <andrew@w3.org> wrote:

    Dear Task Force,

    As per schedule, we are meeting this Wednesday at the usual time:
    Teleconference Bridge:
     + / +44.117.370.6152 / +1.617.761.6200
    Teleconference code: 9243# (WAGE#)
    IRC: Channel - #waiage; server - irc.w3.org; port - 6665

    Responding to Organizations with Inaccessible Websites
    - requirements: http://www.w3.org/WAI/EO/changelogs/cl-responding.html
    - initial draft: http://www.w3.org/WAI/EO/Drafts/responding/

    For consideration this week:
    - audience for the document
    - overall reactions to initial draft
    - title of the document
    - tone of document
    - walk through
     - contacting
     - reporting
     - follow up
     - samples
     - resources

    As always, if you can send your views and comments by email we can consider them in advance.

    Thanks, Andrew
    Andrew Arch
    Web Accessibility and Ageing Specialist
    W3C/ERCIM, Sophia Antipolis, France
    Ph +33 (0)4 92 38 79 46
Received on Monday, 9 February 2009 15:54:09 UTC

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