Re: <header> / <footer> & ARIA

So, what you are going to create an element for every ARIA role now? That
is crazy.

Aria landmarks are large perceivable regions in the document marked by the
associated landmark role.

The problem with footer is that by name it sits at the end of the document.
contentinfo pertains to the region that provides information about the
document it is housed in. Why limit information about the content to the
end of a document by calling it footer?


Rich Schwerdtfeger
Distinguished Engineer, SWG Accessibility Architect/Strategist

             Lachlan Hunt                                                  
   >                                                  To 
             Sent by:                  Henri Sivonen <>     
             public-html-reque                                          cc 
                    HTML WG <>, W3C   
                                       WAI-XTECH <>        
             08/28/2009 07:59          Re: <header> / <footer> & ARIA      

Henri Sivonen wrote:
> On Aug 28, 2009, at 15:00, Lachlan Hunt wrote:
>> I'm not so keen on using the name <main>, and would prefer we used
>> <content>.
> <main> is less ambiguous than <content>. Also, see
>> <main> seems like it could only be used once per document, but if we
>> introduce an element for this purpose, it should be able to be used
>> within multiple sections of a page, just like header and footer can be.
> Doesn't that defeat the point of the element? (Of course, error recovery
> needs to be specced for the multi-<main> case. What does JAWS do with
> multiple role=main?)

There are 2 issues here.  One is to have an element that can map to the
ARIA main role, and the other to provide authors with an element they
can use to wrap around the content of a section to separate it from the
header and footer.  See, for instance, the markup used on

For each article, they have a structure like this:

<article class="hentry">
     <h1><a href="...">Article Heading</a></h1>

The use of <section> in that case is wrong, but it seems that authors
want an element there.  Although if we just want to say use <div> (or no
element) for that case, and just address the more specific role="main"
case, then I can accept <main> as an appropriate solution.

>>> role=contentinfo == <footer>
>>> role=banner == <header>
>> Do you think it would be acceptable to make these mappings subject to
>> where those elements are used, like I suggested earlier?
> No, I think the interface between the browser and AT should be exactly
> the same for role=contentinfo and <footer>, etc. That is, it should be
> possible to add <footer> support to browsers without needing changes to
> AT. I think the AT shouldn't be able to tell if the original markup was
> <div role=contentinfo> or <footer>.

That is still the case with what I suggested, since it's the browser
that would handle the mapping from the appropriate <header>/<footer>
elements to the banner/contentinfo roles.

Lachlan Hunt - Opera Software

Received on Friday, 28 August 2009 17:26:49 UTC