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Re: summary of resolutions from last 2 days

From: Joe Clark <joeclark@joeclark.org>
Date: Thu, 16 Jun 2005 19:34:37 +0000 (UTC)
To: WAI-GL <w3c-wai-gl@w3.org>
Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.4.60.0506161925000.6650@aristotle.multipattern.com>

On Tue, 14 Jun 2005, Matt May wrote:

> Yep. And it's the right call to leave it out at P1.

Curiously, I wasn't discussing that.

> They can just as effectively make inaccessible content from a tool that 
> produces valid output, despite all claims to the contrary.

If you're imagining the case of alt texts that are present (as required by 
spec) but incorrect, that's actually very hard to find in the wild. What 
are the other cases, and what sites can you point to that exhibit those 

> They'd spend more time fixing validation errors (many of which wouldn't 
> matter at all to ATs)

That distinction would certainly be true for something simple like 
unencoded ampersands in URLs or a snippet like this:

 	<p>Text using the <strong>element.</p>

A Texas Instruments calculator with an LED display from 1981 could figure 
that out.

But that is not the real world of invalid markup. It is rather a banquet 
of tag soup with serious consequences for interpreting the document tree.

> But validity is not a sine qua non for accessibility. And it's the wrong 
> thing to lie down in the road over.

Sorry, I don't *do* Olive Oyl as part of my act.

The decision by the WCAG Working Group members with expense accounts who 
met, wined, and dined in Brussels essentially appeases producers of crappy 
CMSs. It takes as a natural state of the world that CMSs should produce 
invalid code, and that the only realistic way to produce valid code is 
to type it out by hand, a skill the Brussels crowd lacks in any event.

It says not only "We never meant what we said about valid HTML all along"; 
it says "Keep up the good work!" It also contradicts wide swaths of the 
rest of the W3C, from the HTML and CSS Working Groups to Quality 

And indeed piece-of-shit content-management systems like Vignette will 
never be updated for valid-code output until there's pressure. There won't 
be pressure until there are requirements. And-- go ahead and prove me 
wrong here-- the WCAG Working Group seems rather too chicken to set a 


     Joe Clark | joeclark@joeclark.org
     Accessibility <http://joeclark.org/access/>
       --What's wrong with top-posting?
Received on Thursday, 16 June 2005 19:34:52 UTC

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