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WCAG Next Possible Models

From: Gian Wild <gian@accessibilityoz.com>
Date: Sun, 17 Apr 2016 04:23:14 +0000
To: "w3c-wai-ig@w3.org" <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Message-ID: <HK2PR01MB077240B263AB3460039A125ACF6A0@HK2PR01MB0772.apcprd01.prod.exchangelabs.com>
Hi

I have been looking at the WCAG Next Possible Models and my preference is to integrate extension requirements by date (Option 2.2).

Option 1.1
I see that there will be problems with Option 1.1 (add specific extension), where people will choose a specific extension (such as the low vision extension) without realising the complexity and broadness of web accessibility. Most people new to web accessibility think that it is a low vision issue only, and are surprised to learn that there are actually many more people with cognitive disabilities accessing the web than people with vision impairments. I think that Option 1.1 will lead to more fracturing of the web towards helping specific people, as opposed to making the site accessible as a whole. Also, in my time as an accessibility specialist, people with cognitive disabilities are always being interpreted as having intellectual disabilities, and therefore often completely ignored. When I was on the Working Group we worked very hard not to say "this success criterion helps only people with vision impairment"; I don't think that should change.

The other problem I have with Option 1.1 is that WCAG2 is very good in some areas (such as assisting screen readers in interpreting the page: witness all the ALT attribute requirements), but ostensibly fails in others (assisting people with cognitive disabilities). It is a well-known fact that many success criteria essential for people with cognitive disabilities to access web sites were relegated to Level AAA, as they were not testable; as we have seen, Level AAA is routinely ignored. Thus I see that there are areas of WCAG2 that need some intense improvement (cognitive, mobile etc) and others which are perhaps not so urgent.

Option 1.2
In my experience working with organisations attempting accessibility conformance, they often do not know what technology they are using. I also think this could lead to "well we're WCAG2 for desktop (oh we have a mobile site as well but we're not looking at that to be accessible)".

Option 2.1
I think this will also be confusing to the organisations attempting to implement WCAG2. I am not sure how this differs from Option 1.1.

Option 2.2
Perhaps it is not released once a year but once every two years?

Just my thoughts. I am glad to see that people are considering an update to WCAG2 - waiting for WCAG3 is definitely problematic.


--

Gian Wild, CEO
AccessibilityOz

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Received on Sunday, 17 April 2016 04:23:47 UTC

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