Accessible _By_

I'm using Charles' words to launch off on a tangent, not to
directly disagree with anything he's said:

At 07:41 PM 1/17/2001 , Charles F. Munat wrote:
>If we're going to start redefining words, why not redefine accessibility to
>mean "accessible to my friends and me"? 

Actually, that's not a half bad idea, because it puts the person
back in accessibility.  Saying "accessible" without saying -to
whom- something is accessible is like saying something is "nearby".

I'd rather see definitions of accessibility which state "this can
be used by identifiable groups of people" than definitions which
equate accessibility with "meeting a published DTD."  E.g., "this
page is accessible _by_ people who can't see" retains the people
aspect better than "this page is accessible, because it follows
the XHTML 1.0 specification."

There's no such thing as absolute accessibility -- the only way
to reasonably speak of accessibility is to say who can access
given content or functionality.  It doesn't matter if your validator
or Bobby button insistently _tells_ me something is accessible;
if I _can't_ access it, then it is inaccessible by me, flat out,
full stop.

This is one of my pet peeves, people who speak of accessibility in
a vacuum or in terms of XML specs or whatever.  Let's not lose 
sight of the human element here.


Kynn Bartlett  <>      
Technical Developer Relations, Reef 
Chief Technologist, Idyll Mountain Internet
Contributor, Special Ed. Using XHTML
Unofficial Section 508 Checklist

Received on Thursday, 18 January 2001 15:34:31 UTC