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Re: Flickr and alt

From: Maciej Stachowiak <mjs@apple.com>
Date: Tue, 19 Aug 2008 17:53:30 -0700
Cc: Philip TAYLOR <P.Taylor@Rhul.Ac.Uk> (Ret'd), David Poehlman <david.poehlman@handsontechnologeyes.com>, Anne van Kesteren <annevk@opera.com>, James Graham <jg307@cam.ac.uk>, Steven Faulkner <faulkner.steve@gmail.com>, Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch>, W3C WAI-XTECH <wai-xtech@w3.org>, public-html@w3.org
Message-Id: <5756B9E0-E618-4E2A-AAA4-D414D5AF3EE6@apple.com>
To: Maciej Stachowiak <mjs@apple.com>

On Aug 19, 2008, at 5:44 PM, Maciej Stachowiak wrote:

> On Aug 19, 2008, at 2:06 AM, Philip TAYLOR (Ret'd) wrote:
>> Maciej Stachowiak wrote:
>>> Flickr is one of many public sites featuring user-generated  
>>> content that is mostly shared with friends and family, but which  
>>> is mostly visible to the general public. In terms of our moral  
>>> sensibilities about accessibility, it is more like a public  
>>> bulletin board where anyone can put up a poster, than like the  
>>> professional signage in a store or school.
>> I do not use Flickr, but I do use Picasaweb, which I believe
>> is analogous.  On Picasaweb, albums can be public or private.
>> Would those who seek to differentiate between public and
>> private facilities in terms of accessibility therefore
>> accept that a /public/ album is /public/, and must therefore
>> meet all legal accessibility requirements ?
> It's not individuals who seek to differentiate, but also the law. My  
> best understanding is that US law on this includes two factors:
> 1) The facility in question is a public accommodation. This is a  
> legal term of art, and doesn't just mean "open / visible to the  
> public". For instance, posting a sign in my yard does not constitute  
> a public accommodation, even if it is visible to the general public.  
> But an apartment building could be, even if you have to live there  
> to be in the building at all.

To correct myself, besides public accommodations, workplaces are also  
subject to various Americans with Disabilities Act requirements, but I  
don't think that affects the substance of my point.

> 2) The responsible party is an institution such as a government or a  
> large business - small businesses and individuals are excepted.
> The way I see it, an individual posting a public photo on Flickr is  
> neither creating a public accommodation, nor acting as an  
> institution, in most cases. Nor is Flickr responsible, because they  
> are just providing a public forum, in the same way that a grocery  
> store might provide a public bulletin board.
> I believe in this case, the law is properly aligned with the correct  
> ethical result, which is that it ought not be mandatory for many  
> private individuals to incur extra cost in money or time for the  
> sake of accessibility, but it is mandatory for big businesses or  
> governments.
> Regards,
> Maciej
Received on Wednesday, 20 August 2008 00:54:11 UTC

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