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RE: Images of text -- P1 violation or no?

From: Bruce Bailey <bbailey@clark.net>
Date: Thu, 13 Apr 2000 12:17:49 -0400
To: "Charles McCathieNevile" <charles@w3.org>
Cc: <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Message-ID: <001d01bfa563$cfc988a0$53fe330a@msde>
Dear Charles,

Jeez, that was fast!  There is also the "theme" that priority schemes be
independent of the UA and compatible with AT solutions.  I assume that the
reasonably common work around you refer to is for the page authors!

Avoiding .GIF'd text IS easy to do!  (In most cases, you don't even need

To quote from the WCAG,

[P1:]  One or more groups will find it impossible to access information in
the document.  Satisfying this checkpoint is a basic requirement for some
groups to be able to use Web documents.

I think I've met both pieces of that litmus test.

My "group" is persons with low vision who have merely average computer
skills.  These people's disability is not so severe that they require AT
screen magnification, but they do routinely make use of the standard
built-in features of their computer and use only large text.  To be more
precise, people who can not read text that is any smaller than 14 point bold
sans-serif.  I don't think this definition of a disability group is
artificial.  The WCAG specifically mentions people who "have difficulty
reading or comprehending text".

The distinction between P1 and P2 turns on the use of "impossible" versus

For all practical purposes, having body text presented as an image, for the
group I have defined IS a basic requirement for them to use Web documents.
The WCAG makes some provisions for persons with cognitive impairments.
Expecting little old ladies to use AT (even a hand lens, they could easily
have motor impairment after all) or to reconfigure their browser/OS as
needed on problem pages is NOT reasonable!

3.1 could stay as it is, especially since it's conditional.  I would like to
see something clearer like:

P1:  Do not use images to provide body text content.

I wish I had spotted this a year ago!


> -----Original Message-----
> From: Charles McCathieNevile [mailto:charles@w3.org]
> Sent: Thursday, April 13, 2000 11:47 AM
> To: Bruce Bailey
> Cc: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
> Subject: Re: Images of text -- P1 violation or no?
> I think you have indeed answered your own question. P1 means it
> is accessible
> - there is a reasonably common work-around. P2 means that it is
> not difficult
> to do the workaround (in very rough terms).
> The working group tended to very strict interpretation of the
> priority scheme
> in assigning priorities to checkpoints.
> Charles McCN
Received on Thursday, 13 April 2000 12:21:14 UTC

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