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Quality Tip suggestion: don't say "click here", not everyone will be clicking

From: Aaron Swartz <aswartz@upclink.com>
Date: Sat, 15 Sep 2001 22:32:56 -0500
Message-Id: <200109160335.f8G3ZVb01627@theinfo.org>
Cc: www-qa@w3.org
To: Dan Connolly <connolly@w3.org>
I'd like to contribute this to Quality Tips for Webmasters.


  - Aaron "<marquee />" Swartz

<h1 class="slug"><strong>Don't say "click here"</strong>, not 
everyone will be clicking</h1>

<p>There are lots of ways to visit a web page:</p>

	<li>people reading printed web pages</li>
	<li>users of Web-enabled phones</li>
	<li>blind people using <a 
href="http://www.w3.org/WAI/References/Browsing">an alternative 
	<li>computer programs (like <a 
engines</a>) that process the text of your web page</li>

<p>"Click here" assumes everyone has a computer and mouse. And 
it's not even needed: most users of the Web understand how to 
follow links.</p>

<p>So leave out specific mentions of "clicking". 
<strong>Don't</strong> say:</p>

<blockquote>To read these files, you need to download Adobe 
Acrobat Reader, please <a href="">click here</a>.</blockquote>

<p>Also leave out actions for the visitor to folow. So don't 
even say:</p>

<blockquote>To read these files, go to the <a 
Acrobat Reader website</a> to download the necessary 

<p>Better, would be to say:</p>

<blockquote>Reading these files requires the <a 
Acrobat Reader</a>, a free download.</blockquote>

<p>Best of all, would be to <a 
href="http://access.adobe.com/simple_form.html">provide the 
document in HTML</a>.</p>

<h2>Further Reading</h2>
   <li><a href="http://kbs.cs.tu-
berlin.de/~jutta/ht/writing/text.html">Writing hypertext copy</a>
      in <a href="http://kbs.cs.tu-
berlin.de/~jutta/ht/writing.html">What is good hypertext 
writing?</a>, by <a href="http://www.cs.tu-
berlin.de/~jutta/index.html">Jutta Degener</a>, April 1998. (See 
also: <a href="http://www.cs.tu-
berlin.de/~jutta/ht/writing/words.html">Dangerous words</a>)</li>
Received on Saturday, 15 September 2001 23:33:02 UTC

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