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Who makes law Re: UK Businesses Reject Accessible Web Sites

From: Charles McCathieNevile <charles@sidar.org>
Date: Sun, 26 Dec 2004 08:56:48 -0600 (CST)
Message-ID: <55762.>
To: "Isofarro" <lists@isofarro.uklinux.net>
Cc: "Access Systems" <accessys@smart.net>, "David Woolley" <david@djwhome.demon.co.uk>, w3c-wai-ig@w3.org

I think one of the points of the article was that some businesses don't
consider the existing laws appropriate - neither for business, nor for
people with disabilities. Of course, that's effectively a local biritsh
concern. As a believer in democracy, what I think of the laws in the UK,
the USA, Palestine (they enacted law in 2001 apparently - I am chasing the
details now) or Peru isn't nearly as important as what the people who live
there think. (It doesn't stop me having opinions, of course).

I do get concerned when organisations which are based in one country, and
have a presence in a second country in order to further their own benefits
there, start trying to explain what the laws of that second country should
be. But that is going well beyond the topic of this list.

It does indeed seem that a telephone service isn't going to cut it. You
could ask the good folks at the RNID - http://www.rnid.org - how much they
think it is an equivalent service :-). On the other hand there is the
possibility that people switch off their brains, like someone at the
Central Queensland University, who decided that they should turn off the
inaccessible online enrolment system whenever the telephone "equivalent"
was not manned (i.e. most of the time).

The goal here is to further access. There are laws designed to encourage
that, and there generally are organisations who work to make sure that
there is enough explanation available to head off interpretations that are
simply a step backwards.

But it takes a while for people to get the hang of technology sometimes.
And most people don't put any real effort into actually understanding how
law works, which is a shame since it governs us all.



Charles McCathieNevile           charles@sidar.org

<quote who="Isofarro">
> Access Systems wrote:
>> On Thu, 23 Dec 2004, David Woolley wrote:
>>>1) they believe that providing phone access excuses them from making
>>>   web sites accessible;
>> ?? is the phone access 24/7 and what do folks with speech problems or
>> hearing problems do???  the big question "is it equivalant facilitation"

... [apparently intelligent analysis of public material (there ought to be
more of it :-) ]

> With this particular point it looks clear that the provision of
> telephone access is not enough to make an online service acccessible.
> Mike.
Received on Sunday, 26 December 2004 14:57:25 UTC

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