RE: WCAG compliance question

Ø  Duplicate content should not be on there, but simply styled differently (transformed if you will - good ole xslt).

This is sometimes easier said than done.  For example, say you have an ARIA combo box on the desktop view and an expand/collapse accordion with radio buttons on the mobile view.  The ARIA roles and attributes would need to be different depending on the breakpoint to represent the semantic differences.  So reusing the same elements might be tricky unless in this case you make the element that looks like a combo box into an expandable region with the combo box dropdown as a button, etc.  But then the visual control has a different pattern than what a user with partial sight or a keyboard only user might expect.


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From: Gordon L. Potter []
Sent: Monday, February 29, 2016 6:03 PM
Subject: Re: WCAG compliance question

What I have come to find is CSS plays a small role in all we do, apart from visual layout.
If the proper, h1, h2, etc semantic web standards are applied, the look should not matter in terms of accessing information.
As Mark stated ("Is the information understandable and complete without it").  I believe the answer to Ginger's question is that no, in fact the information is not 'accessible' without the use of CSS.
The idea of duplicate content on a page served up based on browser window size (max, min-width) doesn't make much sense although it is used all the time.
Duplicate content should not be on there, but simply styled differently (transformed if you will - good ole xslt).  I just take it from the point of view of the user, who want's to read the same content twice (as Richard state...CSS written incorrectly).
I like to turn the CSS off on pages I do to ensure it 'works' with out the look.
Great convo. everyone. Thanks.

On Fri, Feb 26, 2016 at 10:24 AM, Malamud, Mark (NIH/NHLBI) [E] <<>> wrote:
I think Angela  is right, without knowing specifics -- i.e., the additional things that were revealed to JFW/NVDA that weren't available with CSS on -- it's hard to say.

There are a number of ways to look at this but the link she provided has a nice bit:

Assistive technologies can substitute or extend the CSS to modify presentation, or ignore the CSS and interact directly with the structural encoding.

My only concern would be that the instructions should be clearly presented for screen reader users.

Correct coding is also a success criterion:

4.1.1 Parsing: In content implemented using markup languages, elements have complete start and end tags, etc.

Parsing:  Understanding SC 4.1.1

Mark Malamud
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-----Original Message-----
From: Angela Punshon [<>]
Sent: Friday, February 26, 2016 9:25 AM
To: Richard (Userite) <<>>;<>
Subject: RE: WCAG compliance question

This speaks to the need to separate content from presentation. ( But also to the importance of going beyond pure conformance.

However, without knowing what content has been hidden or presented differently, it is hard to verify it's level of accessibility. In comparison, an image is not deemed accessible just because it has an ALT defined. It is the content within the ALT that is important.


-----Original Message-----
From: Richard (Userite) [<>]
Sent: February 26, 2016 7:26 AM
Subject: Re: WCAG compliance question

Yes the site needs to be accessible with CSS enabled AND with it disabled.

Developers can use CSS to "hide" messages that are aimed at people who use screen readers. For example most pages have a top navigation bar which requires a heading so that blind users can find it easily. However to stop the heading actually showing up on the page for sighted users CSS has been used such as, for example,  either {display:none;} or {position:left, -1999px;}

It is not that visual users are getting less than blind users, just that additional help is provided for screen readers.

The fact that your Jaws does not pick up this hidden text suggests that the CSS has been written incorrectly.



-----Original Message-----
From: Chaals McCathie Nevile
Sent: Friday, February 26, 2016 11:23 AM
Subject: Re: WCAG compliance question

Hi Ginger,

as I read WCAG 2.0 it allows conformance claims to rely on particular technology - See point 5 at

So you can say that the site is conformant, Relying Upon CSS.

Conformance is not the most important question, however, in my opinion.
That question is "does the site have accessibility barriers"? Which comes down to a few questions:
- do users turn off CSS in ie 11 (e.g. to simplify the layout or colour scheme, or ensure that their own style sheet works?)
- what about other user agents?


On Fri, 26 Feb 2016 11:14:00 +0100, Ginger Claassen <<>> wrote:

> Hello everybody,
> I have a WCAG compliance question. I am checking a website for a
> customer and if I am opening the site in internet explorer 11 with css
> enabled I can use the site more or less. however, if I disable css  suddenly there
> are a lot of things I have not seen with jfw or nvda   before. Thus, is it
> wcag compliant to do this or has a site to be  accessibel even with
> css enabled?
> thanks in advance for your assistance!
> Solong
>      Ginger

Charles McCathie Nevile - web standards - CTO Office, Yandex<> - - - Find more at

Received on Wednesday, 2 March 2016 18:38:30 UTC