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Re: D-link and LONGDESC (GL type stuff)

From: Kynn Bartlett <kynn-hwg@idyllmtn.com>
Date: Thu, 23 Apr 1998 20:10:35 -0700
Message-Id: <>
To: "R. Dolloff" <averil@concentric.net>
Cc: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org, charlesn@sunrise.srl.rmit.edu.au
At 06:15 p.m. 04/23/98 -0500, R. Dolloff wrote:
>Just out of curiosity, where do you propose the general web audience
>becomes educated as to understanding a D-link, whether or not they have
>need of the link themselves? Please answer privately if this is not germane
>to public discussion.

I should point out that I've been using and creating for the web
for years, but until I read the WAI guidelines and joined this
list, I'd never _heard_ of a "D-link".  And I'm a pretty well-
informed guy when it comes to HTML and web design.

I personally don't like the D-link approach.  I agree that the
functionality should be there, somehow, but the ideas of little
D's next to each graphic is not only unappealing, but very
counter-intuitive and thus not useful for most people.  (Blind
people, last time I checked, were not automatically issued hand-
books that day "D-links describe the graphics which you can't
see", no more than sighted people.)

Especially with an 'official way' to do D-link equivalents --
LONGDESC -- the current method of implementing D-links seems
both cludgy and not "forward-compatible".

If you tell web designers, "in other to make your web pages
accessible, you have to use these little ugly things that
you can't really design around/for easily" -- you're _not_
going to see accessible pages with D-links.  You're going to
see a lot of web designers saying "accessibility is a crock;
I can either look good to 98% of my audience, or I can look
like crap to 98% of them and please that 2%".

D-links and other accessibility considerations that cause
too much interference with what a web designer would like
to create do _not_ help our cause -- they only drive people
away from accessibility.

For this reason, I will use LONGDESC -- even though no web
browsers yet use it -- and not use D-links.  I'm all for the
idea, but I'm very against the D-link method.

Kynn Bartlett <kynn@hwg.org>
Governing Board Member, HTML Writers Guild
Education and Outreach working group member,
  Web Accessibility Initiative
Received on Thursday, 23 April 1998 23:07:34 UTC

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