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Re: URGENT: Help

From: Charles McCathieNevile <charles@w3.org>
Date: Fri, 23 Jul 1999 11:29:19 -0400 (EDT)
To: Francisco Godinho <f.godinho@mail.telepac.pt>
cc: WAI Interest Group <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.4.10.9907231119471.7732-100000@tux.w3.org>

As a web designer, ensuring that the content I am producing can be read is
what I do. In terms of work specifically devoted to ensuring access to people
with disabilities I would guess that it takes perhaps 5% of the time I spend
in design work. Compare that to around 40% for ensuring that a preferred
visual presentation can be realised, and around 30% of the time in ensuring
that the information structure of the website is sensible. (the rest of the
time is usually spent clarifying a briefing, providing interim versions,
making phone calls, etc.)

The major cost is a one-off expense to learn what is required - this can be
delayed, but means that more retrofitting will have to be done, and that can
be more expensive. I have done a couple of retrofits, and the expense was in
the order of 10% - 20% of the original site cost.

For sites which use a very substantial amount of video, or which are really
badly designed, the cost of accessibility is two to three times higher - for
example up to 15% of development time to produce accessible video, or up to
50% of the cost of retrofitting for a really badly designed site, although
that includes some basic design work which is not accessibility-specific.


Charles McCathieNevile

On Fri, 23 Jul 1999, Francisco Godinho wrote:

  Dear friends,
  The Portuguese law about web accessibility is ready to be
  approved or rejected by the Government in few days.
  This law, in Portugal, could be very important to
  web accessibility in Europe and Brazil.
  However, there is one question that is crucial for the decision:
  Some members of the Government think that
  accessible web authoring is expensive and difficult.
  I have 24 hours to summarize some arguments
  (one page) to overcome this lack of information.
  I would be grateful if you could help me today.
  In the W3C/WAI FAQs, I  found some arguments:
  9. Does it cost more to make a site accessible?
  Designing a new site to be accessible should not add significantly to
  development cost. Some aspects of accessibility, such as use of style
  sheets, can actually reduce the costs of maintaining or updating sites, and
  this benefit should increase over time as style sheets are more evenly
  implemented in browsers and available as an authoring strategy in authoring
  For existing sites, the ease or difficulty of making sites accessible
  depends on a variety of factors, including the size of a site, the
  complexity of a site, and the authoring tool that was used to make a site.
  Periodic upgrades or reviews of sites can be good opportunities to review
  the accessibility of sites. When compared with the broader audience that a
  site is available to, and the greater usability for other users as well,
  accessible sites can be cost-effective.
  I think that I need more arguments.
  Should I alert for the production's cost of alternative formats
  like braille or audio tapes  ?
  Thank you for your help
  Francisco Godinho
  Co-coordinator of the Petition for the Accessibility of the Portuguese
  PASIG - Portuguese Accessibility Special Interest Group

--Charles McCathieNevile            mailto:charles@w3.org
phone: +1 617 258 0992   http://www.w3.org/People/Charles
W3C Web Accessibility Initiative    http://www.w3.org/WAI
MIT/LCS  -  545 Technology sq., Cambridge MA, 02139,  USA
Received on Friday, 23 July 1999 11:30:39 UTC

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