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RE: FAQ - where are the FAQs for this list?

From: Denise Wood <Denise_Wood@operamail.com>
Date: Fri, 22 Feb 2002 22:47:04 -0500
To: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Message-ID: <3CE52B0D@operamail.com>
Ineke, Bob, Steve, Al, Phill, Petri, Jukka, Seth, Jon, Simon (have I left any 
one off the list of participants in this specific discussion????)

Thanks all for your contributions to discussions realting to the draft FAQs 
that Chas posted to the IG for critique.

I cannot speak for the other "authors" of the draft FAQs but I do agree with 
the points raised so far and am impressed by the amount of discussion this one 
issue has generated. I believe the use of "alt tag" may have well been to 
capture those in the community who have heard reference to this incorrect 
terminology (it is unfortunately common usage in many non-Web designer circles 
and why don't you all try doing a google search on "alt tag"). I wonder also 
if the use of the term alt tag has arisen because the boxed text that appears 
over the image in the browser looks like a tag (using Bob's definition of the 
word "tag" not the Web definition). For example, if you read this definition 
of "alt-tag" that I found on the BBC site after doing the fore mentioned 
search to find out how frequnetly the term is mis-used, it almost sounds like 
the definition is talking about the visible "tag" on the screen not the coding 
that sits behind it http://www.bbc.co.uk/webwise/glossary/a.shtml?file=alttag
Of course this definition is even more confusing and problematic because it 
focuses on the visible "tag" which is not visible for at least one group of 
people who benefit from the use of the alt attribute! BTW Steve I also tend to 
use the tem alternative text to avoid confusing people who have no interest in 
Web design but want to understand the issues confronting people accessing the 

However I do agree using the term is confusing and needs 
clarification/definition. Would an acceptable approach be to add another FAQ 
such as "What is the difference between tags, attributes and elements?" and 
then provide a clear definition with examples? If we did this prior to 
presenting the question relating to the use of alternative text for images 
then it should not be problematic for even novices to read an FAQ that refers 
to the alt attribute rather than the incorrect term "alt tag". Of course each 
FAQ needs to also stand alone as people may only look for the FAQ that is of 
interest to them. Perhaps we could put hyperlinks then to the preceeding FAQ 
which defines the term. Would that be a viable solution? If so, any volunteers 
to have a go at writing the answer to the suggested additional FAQ?

Thanks all - I have enjoyed reading the trail of communication :-)


Dr Denise L Wood
Lecturer: Professional Development (online teaching and learning)
University of South Australia
CE Campus, North Terrace, Adelaide SA 5000
Ph:    (61 8) 8302 2172 / (61 8) 8302 4472 (Tuesdays & Thursdays)
Fax:  (61 8) 8302 2363 / (61 8) 8302 4390
Mob: (0413 648 260)

Email:	Denise.Wood@unisa.edu.au
WWW:	http://www.unisanet.unisa.edu.au/staff/homepage.asp?Name=Denise.Wood
Received on Friday, 22 February 2002 22:47:16 UTC

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