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Re: contact with developers (was RE: webwatch-l What To Do About .gif Files)

From: David Poehlman <poehlman@clark.net>
Date: Tue, 2 Dec 1997 08:12:52 -0500 (EST)
To: Scott Luebking <phoenixl@netcom.com>
cc: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Message-ID: <Pine.GSO.3.96.971202075915.25480A-100000@clark.net>
shear numbers make it more proffetable.  we are not talking just about the
blind here.  If I use a 286 and don't have access to the web but only to
email, I cannot benefit from a website with features that stymie current
access software.
so, including me who is not disabled except in the sense that my equipment
and access are not state of the art increases the numbers dramatically in
terms of accessability.  How people learn is a good thing to know and this
is currently evidenced by the plethora of ways in which people access
learning materials both on and off line.  There are numerous workshops,
seminars, demonstrations, books, magazines and many more formats not
discounting classroom lectures on and off line that provide a medium for
distributing information.  Perhaps we need to aggressively seek out those
who do the teaching and those who make the decissions as to what a website
will be designed around with appropriate information and conduits.  As
with tv for one instance, we will never reach all to success for one
reason or annother, but we will put preasure on in the market place and
some will do what their peers are doing.
I also think that relying on the medium to help us is also a good
strategy.  I've been mostly successfull in my contacts with publishers of
web sites when contacting them with specific information concerning the
accessability and readabillity of their sites.
Educating the consumer in this case can and does go a long way to helping
solve the problem of making developpers aware and motivated towards making
accessability a part of their goals.
often, it is after the fact, but in some cases I've gotten requests from
people who are working on sites and have asked for access assistance
before the site is published.
I do a lot of referring.  I also take a look at pages and edit portions to
show how they may be made more accessable.  I've been asked by people who
have a problem with a site to look at and also to provide them with
guidance on how to approach web developpers.  Lastly, if we can get the
publishers of web developpment software in on this, it can be less likely
that sites will be developped that will not be accessable or at least as
accessable as can be hoped.

On Mon, 1 Dec 1997, Scott Luebking wrote:

> Hi,
> I think it is very important to understand what motivates or will motivate
> a web site developer to make his/her web site accessible.
> I agree that a certain percentage of web sites will need to be accessible
> because of various laws, ADA, etc.  In terms of business motivation,
> the underlying forces are less clear.  One consideration a business
> would have is how many potential, qualified customers are blind.
> If the business believes that not many of its customers are blind,
> the effort for developing and testing accessible web sites may not
> be worth it.  (Readability of a web site is important, but accessibility
> of a web site is more than that.)
> A third group of web site developers, probably the largest group,
> develop their sites for non-business reasons and are not under
> any legal obligations to make a site accessible.  What will motivate
> these people?
> I'm at a loss to know how to make accessibility so attractive that it
> can't be refused.  Perhaps a goal of making accessibility easier to
> include in web sites would be more reasonable.
> Scott
> > 
> > taking into account their audience and the type of web matter they are
> > doing, it comes down to a couple of choices.  If they are doing public
> > business or are envolved in government or education here in the u s in any
> > case, they are subject to pollicy.  If they are doing business of any
> > kind, it would stand to reason, that the shear numbers of people that
> > might be attracted to their sites would it were that they were more
> > readable for all might turn the tide.  In none of these senarios fits, or
> > if other constraints prevail, there is nothing to move the mountain.
> > it is in everyone's interest to have information that is given given in a
> > way which is accessable to all.  Instead of asking what motivates people
> > to produce accessable sites, we should perhaps make it so appealing to do
> > so that they can't refuse.
> > microsoft has some passages which summ this up pretty in their
> > accessability documents.
> > Why should accessability be a factor in design?
> > 

touching the internet
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Received on Tuesday, 2 December 1997 08:13:14 UTC

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