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RE: should we have a 2 year refresh cycle or a 4-5 year refresh cycle

From: Katie Haritos-Shea GMAIL <ryladog@gmail.com>
Date: Wed, 5 Oct 2016 09:59:44 -0400
To: "'Alastair Campbell'" <acampbell@nomensa.com>, "'White, Jason J'" <jjwhite@ets.org>, "'David MacDonald'" <david100@sympatico.ca>, "'WCAG'" <w3c-wai-gl@w3.org>
Message-ID: <151d01d21f10$badba3e0$3092eba0$@gmail.com>
Alistair and Jason,


We do need to state that WCAG will be regularly updated, and no longer that every say, 5 years – and yes governments can have their laws direct conformance to any version they wish. But SC are hard to get exactly right, it takes time to do that – and it does take time for new versions to be up-taken by laws and regulations.


Understand Docs and Techniques (of all kinds) are *much easier* to write than SC – and guess what, Techniques are *really* hard to write – especially in an environment when any suggestion to do so are lambasted by WG participants – who themselves are not willing to write even one word of a technique – who only see the need to criticize those who do.


WCAG 2 is not a web language or web protocol that can get agilely improved, if a make a mistake.


There are options between 10 years and 2 years. I believe we need to take a well thought-out, more conservative stance, than two year view. 


Somewhere in between for new SC and a new standard – let’s say – 3 (extremely optimistic), 4 (optimistic), or 5 years (but no more than 5).


However, saying anything about an update timeline – RIGHT NOW – in this Charter – in these precious day before Section 508 may be actually done - may in fact derail the current Section 508 Refresh in the US.


We, in this group, may be talking about 2.1 like everyone knows about it around the world. That is not true, many governments will be surprised to hear about it. That is enough new information for the to gets their minds and processes around.


Also throwing at the a two year new WCAG cycle – at the same time – I believe, will seriously damage our standing with government and courts – and more importantly – work against our ability to gain improved access for persons with disabilities.


Keep in mind, for most of us in the profession, if it weren’t for those policy kittens (I love that term and vision Josh…:)) and laws – that accessibility for persons with disabilities, would not be the worldwide movement that it is – and most of us would not have jobs.


(Looks like it is my turn to write books instead of email…..)






* katie *


Katie Haritos-Shea 
Principal ICT Accessibility Architect (WCAG/Section 508/ADA/AODA)


Cell: 703-371-5545 |  <mailto:ryladog@gmail.com> ryladog@gmail.com | Oakton, VA |  <http://www.linkedin.com/in/katieharitosshea/> LinkedIn Profile | Office: 703-371-5545 |  <https://twitter.com/Ryladog> @ryladog


From: Alastair Campbell [mailto:acampbell@nomensa.com] 
Sent: Wednesday, October 5, 2016 9:37 AM
To: White, Jason J <jjwhite@ets.org>; David MacDonald <david100@sympatico.ca>; WCAG <w3c-wai-gl@w3.org>
Subject: Re: should we have a 2 year refresh cycle or a 4-5 year refresh cycle


Jason wrote:

“I doubt that regulators could keep up with such frequent changes to what is supposed to be a stable Web standard built for the long term. This is especially true if they cannot refer, for example, to “WCAG 2.0 or any later version” , a solution which is problematic in that it leaves the legal standard open to modification at any time by an organization that is not part of the government.”


Alastair: I thought the idea was that people can carry on referring to WCAG 2.0 if they wish, and next time they update they review the most recent stable release. Whether that is 2.1, 2.4, or 3.0.


We can’t control the timeline of 100+ countries laws, but we can’t adhere to their timelines either. We need a stable trail of releases that they can pick up when it is suitable for them.


We also have to balance the need for long timescales with other feedback that WCAG is looking out of date now. I think we can turn to the policy makers and point to the technology changes that require us to update more often.


Whether it is 2 years or 5, we need an update ASAP and another in less than 5 years IMHO (which probably means aiming for 2?!).




Received on Wednesday, 5 October 2016 14:00:30 UTC

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