RE: Conformance Claims and Logo

I think these issues can be resolved by recognizing the flexibility of
the developer in determining the scope of a conformance claim. For
example, suppose I use Lisa's forthcomig RDF mechanism to annotate
certain Web content with structural elements and other semantics that
are not explicitly encoded in the content itself. For this purpose it
doesn't matter whether the content was created by me or by a third
party. Whoever makes a conformance claim in respect of this content,
whether it be I or a third party, can then claim that the conformance
claim encompasses both the main content and my RDF metadata, so that
in combination they can be regarded as implementing the guidelines.

Obviously, such a method of achieving conformance would only be
practically useful if there existed tools for interpreting the RDF
annotations. However, I can find nothing in our conformance rules that
would disallow such a method of implementing the guidelines and I
don't think any change in the conformance rules is warranted on that

To address Lee's query, one could restrict the scope of a conformance
claim in such a way as to exclude certain third party content. Again,
this is allowed under our current conformance scheme - the developer
has unrestricted flexibility in defining the scope of a conformance
claim by unambiguously identifying the content to which it refers. Of
course, from a policy perspective there may be certain Web sites that
aren't allowed to include content which doesn't conform to the
guidelines, but that is a question of individual, organizational or
governmental policy and lies outside the guidelines themselves, which
are a technical specification, not a policy document.

The best solution, I would argue, is to place no restrictions in the
guidelines themselves on the flexibility of the developer to identify
the content that is covered by a conformance claim, leaving it to
policy makers to decide whether they want to make conformance
mandatory, and if so under what circumstances, in respect of what
content, and subject to what exemptions.

Received on Monday, 3 February 2003 01:46:04 UTC