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RE: Possible draft of 3.2.7

From: Michael Gower <michael.gower@ca.ibm.com>
Date: Wed, 27 Apr 2022 14:17:38 +0000
To: Sarah Horton <sarah.horton@gmail.com>, "w3c-waI-gl@w3. org" <w3c-wai-gl@w3.org>, public-cognitive-a11y-tf <public-cognitive-a11y-tf@w3.org>
CC: Gregg Vanderheiden <gregg@raisingthefloor.org>, Alastair Campbell <acampbell@nomensa.com>
Message-ID: <SA0PR15MB4032FB0FB3AE24B7552F904BDEFA9@SA0PR15MB4032.namprd15.prod.outlook.com>
  *   Gregg’s proposed changes to the SC name and description seem like a positive step toward clarifying the intent of the SC.
I sent a quick response directly to Gregg on this, but I’ll say it publicly since you are advocating for that rewording:

“not visually indicated as controls”
What does that mean? It’s added in another point of subjective interpretation.

“until hover or focus, provide a visible indicator”
What constitutes “visible indicator”? This is the existing unresolved issue.

I think you previously cited an article about assessing Use of Color<https://eur03.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.tpgi.com%2Fwell-color-us-surprised-this-sc-can-be-a-tricky-customer%2F&data=04%7C01%7Ca.james%40soton.ac.uk%7Cca3fb823d84244b3632d08da1d500371%7C4a5378f929f44d3ebe89669d03ada9d8%7C0%7C0%7C637854526740336525%7CUnknown%7CTWFpbGZsb3d8eyJWIjoiMC4wLjAwMDAiLCJQIjoiV2luMzIiLCJBTiI6Ik1haWwiLCJXVCI6Mn0%3D%7C3000&sdata=RqnpamEoNwLG5FlVO%2BslCw%2FYE6NLt8YCPuPSpbCclcA%3D&reserved=0>. In Test 7’s ‘Is it a failure’ response, the author says:

  *   Well, it’s a classic “it depends” but with this bare bones example, it’s a pass.
  *   It depends on other content and layout nearby. But here, it’s a (small) list of links after a block of text.
  *   The position and layout means that the links are not confused as being part of a sentence (as they might in Test 1).
  *   The shortness of the links (as shown here) also help reinforce this.
  *   Clearly the link phrases—imperative call-to-actions—make this much more obvious that these are links.
  *   Underlines would sure help here, but the position and language means that it is not just the change of color at play here.
Apply similar considerations to the latest wording, and I hope you can see how difficult it may be to reach an accord on what either of these terms/concepts in the wording means.
Even with something as relatively simple as asking whether color is the only visual means of conveying information, the article comes up with 17 ‘posers’. This SC is asking to judge not just about color but about ANY visual indicator and arrive at something everyone can agree on. That is why this is such a difficult thing to tackle in an SC.

I agree that a proof for any wording arrived at this week is to have a survey asking which of a sampling meet or fail the SC. However, since the scope of the SC has now changed, I think it would have to be a wider sampling.


From: Sarah Horton <sarah.horton@gmail.com>
Date: Wednesday, April 27, 2022 at 1:49 AM
To: w3c-waI-gl@w3. org <w3c-wai-gl@w3.org>, public-cognitive-a11y-tf <public-cognitive-a11y-tf@w3.org>
Cc: Gregg Vanderheiden <gregg@raisingthefloor.org>, Alastair Campbell <acampbell@nomensa.com>
Subject: [EXTERNAL] Re: Possible draft of 3.2.7
Hi, all. I had suggested in previous emails redoing the survey, as the original survey question and response options were not clear. Could the chairs facilitate that? It might be useful to revisit the examples in light of recent discussions
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Hi, all.

I had suggested in previous emails redoing the survey, as the original survey question and response options were not clear. Could the chairs facilitate that? It might be useful to revisit the examples in light of recent discussions and email debates.

In answer to Alastair's questions below, I would respond, “Yes” to all! On the note about the problem, “what people bring to it affects the results,” that’s a challenge with all the SCs. We need to trust designers and developers judgment and give them agency in meeting SCs in a way that’s appropriate for the context and current conventions. For example, there was a time when not underlining menu links was not sufficient to indicate them as controls. Now it is.

Gregg’s proposed changes to the SC name and description seem like a positive step toward clarifying the intent of the SC.

I hope we can take this work forward and help address this user need. I think the SC does that.


On Apr 26, 2022, at 6:58 PM, Alastair Campbell <acampbell@nomensa.com<mailto:acampbell@nomensa.com>> wrote:

Hi Gregg,

The key thing we haven’t worked out is a common way of understanding what a ‘visible indicator’ is.

This doc includes a mix of the original examples and things I found from a search for interfaces using on-hover interactions:

Put aside pass/fail, what would constitute a visible indicator in each case, and does it have one?

The only one that all 12 people who answered the survey<https://www.w3.org/2002/09/wbs/35422/wcag22-visible-controls/results#xq19> agreed was SquareSpace’s (old?) interface where it just looks like a rendered page, but hovering over things provides edit-controls.

Part of the problem is what people bring to it affects the results. For example, hovering over a video thumbnail is a very common way of providing controls on-hover. Is the video itself an indicator? Is that enough?

Is the context of a menu enough to signify drop-down options? What if some menu items have drop-downs and some don’t? Are we trying to require an icon (or equivalent) for every menu item which has drop-downs?

Is the context of a photo-editing interface context enough that you would assume there are on-hover interactions?

Without creating a catalogue of examples (which I don’t think would scale or internationalise), we don’t seem to be able to come to a reliable answer.


From: Gregg Vanderheiden <gregg@raisingthefloor.org<mailto:gregg@raisingthefloor.org>>
Date: Tuesday, 26 April 2022 at 17:42
To: w3c-waI-gl@w3. org <w3c-wai-gl@w3.org<mailto:w3c-wai-gl@w3.org>>
Subject: Possible draft of 3.2.7
This is a rough first draft of an alternative for Success Criterion 3.2.7

Please anyone send me comments on how to improve this — or problems I missed.



Success Criterion 3.2.7 Controls Visible as Controls (Level AA): When user interface components are invisible or not visually indicated as controls until hover or focus, provide a visible indicator that the components are available and are controls, except when:
•       The same functionality is available through a component on the same page, or on a different step in a multi-step process, without requiring pointer hover or keyboard focus to make it visible as a control;
•       The component provides keyboard-only functionality;
•       A mechanism is available to make the components persistently visible as a control;
•       A mechanism makes controls visible as controls whenever a pointer is moved within or over the page, page is clicked anywhere, or keyboard is used – and stays visible for at least 3 seconds after movement or keyboard operation stops
•       Hiding the visibility of the control as a control is essential to the purpose of the page.

Examples of problems that fail

•      Controls are hidden unless the person points directly to the control

•      Page where links are not visible until the person tabs to them

Examples that pass

•      Movie where all controls are hidden but show up as soon as mouse is moved, person touches the screen anywhere, or the keyboard is used.

•      Page where links are hidden but show up as soon as mouse or keyboard are used within or over the page.


Gregg Vanderheiden


Professor, University of Maryland, College Park
Founder and Director Emeritus , Trace R&D Center, UMD
Co-Founder Raising the Floor. http://raisingthefloor.org<https://eur01.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fraisingthefloor.org%2F&data=05%7C01%7Cacampbell%40nomensa.com%7C7fad4d8beb1a437b48d408da27a388c3%7Cebea4ad6fbbf43bd8449c56e26692c35%7C0%7C0%7C637865881311318349%7CUnknown%7CTWFpbGZsb3d8eyJWIjoiMC4wLjAwMDAiLCJQIjoiV2luMzIiLCJBTiI6Ik1haWwiLCJXVCI6Mn0%3D%7C3000%7C%7C%7C&sdata=LBEUZXyYOC%2F1plKpvnuc5KQ53H8Cll%2FuiR%2FyQSB0o6U%3D&reserved=0>
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Received on Wednesday, 27 April 2022 14:18:04 UTC

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