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Re: DRAFT response Re[3]: Request for PFWG WAI review of Omitting alt Attribute for Critical Content

From: Steven Faulkner <faulkner.steve@gmail.com>
Date: Thu, 29 Nov 2007 11:00:35 +0000
Message-ID: <55687cf80711290300y706a77eeqe9930487b42cc6c0@mail.gmail.com>
To: wai-xtech@w3.org

hi, all

jason wrote:

> Furthermore, the most important concept is that there should be only two
> syntactically distinct possibilities:
> 1. Alt with a non-null string, providing an alternative to the image.
> 2. Alt with a null string, signifying that the image is an artifact of
> formatting.
> There should not be a third - an omitted alt - which ought, as Charles
> suggests, to trigger a syntax error that can be detected by authoring tools
> and markup validators.

I agree with Jason on this,  the current HTML 5 spec needs to be
changed so that alt is a required attribute (as it is in HTML 4). As
omitting the alt attribute does not provide any practical information
to user agents about the significance, nature or intent of the author
in regards to the information contained within an image.

On 29/11/2007, Jason White <jason@jasonjgw.net> wrote:
> On Thu, Nov 29, 2007 at 10:48:53AM +0100, Charles McCathieNevile wrote:
> > I think we should be clearer.
> >
> > [[[ If an image is a key part of the content, the alt attribute
> > must not be specified with an empty value. ]]]
> >
> > Is very important. I think we should request that a missing alt value be
> > considered invalid, although for accessibility reasons it is preferred to
> > the more serious error of marking meaningful content which requires an
> > alternative with alt=""
> I support Charles' comments.
> HTML generating applications (including authoring tools) should not output
> alt="" unless reasonable measures have been taken to ensure that the image
> belongs to the decorative class. This last point is an authoring tool
> requirement which I am sure can be handled in ATAG, if it is not there
> already.

with regards

Steve Faulkner
Technical Director - TPG Europe
Director - Web Accessibility Tools Consortium

www.paciellogroup.com | www.wat-c.org
Web Accessibility Toolbar -
Received on Thursday, 29 November 2007 11:00:54 UTC

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