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Re: Foreign: WCAG 1.0/2.0 and buttons that open a newwindow?


From: Steve Green
Date: Jun 25, 2008 7:30AM

Every time we do user testing we encounter problems when websites open new
windows. Although it affects those with disabilities most, problems occur
with all user groups.

Unfortunately we find that almost no one notices the statements that a new
window will open, whether it is included in the link text or is separate
from it. This doesn't help designers but we can only say what we find.

As Michael says, screen readers do announce that a new window is opening,
but users commonly do not notice. Screen magnifier users often do not notice
that a new window has opened because the window is larger than their
viewport even though it may not be full-screen.


-----Original Message-----
[mailto: <EMAIL REMOVED> ] On Behalf Of Moore, Michael
Sent: 25 June 2008 13:55
To: WebAIM Discussion List
Subject: Re: [WebAIM] Foreign: WCAG 1.0/2.0 and buttons that open a

Opening a new window using a JS Alert or similar function should not cause
any accessibility problems. This is typical application behavior.
Screen readers will announce that a dialog box will open, and even people
with cognitive disabilities should minimally affected because this is
typical behavior within forms and applications. Most applications do this
on a regular basis.

The accessibility issue is raised when a link opens in a new window because
if the user does not know that this has happened then the typical behavior
of being able to use the back button on a browser has been disabled. Window
Eyes and JAWS screen readers will announce when a new window is opened
though but it is a good idea to indicate opening in a new window within a

The most severe case is the unannounced popup that is not initiated
deliberately by the user. This type of pop-up is triggered by timing,
closing windows, or through another event not related to clicking on a link.
They are primarily used as advertisements, including within adware and
should always be avoided by reputable developers. If you client believes
that they need this type of functionality on their site, ask them if return
visits to the site are important to them.


-----Original Message-----
[mailto: <EMAIL REMOVED> ] On Behalf Of Jennison Mark
Sent: Tuesday, June 24, 2008 4:53 PM
To: WebAIM Discussion List
Subject: Foreign:[WebAIM] WCAG 1.0/2.0 and buttons that open a new window?


Passing on a question from a colleague:

"Based on either WCAG 1.0 or WCAG 2.0, I've been looking for direction
regarding the opening of new windows and notifying the user beforehand.
In order to notify the user beforehand that an element will open a new
window, I've seen references to providing titles on hyperlinks and alt on
input type of image (understanding that entry input types of radio, text,
checkbox, file, and password shouldn't open new windows automatically).
However, I can't seem to find any reference to how to implement notification
to the user that an input type of button will open a new window.

Can you indicate whether it is a requirement to notify the user if an input
type of button opens a new window? If the answer is yes, can you provide
some guidance on how this would be implemented in the code (e.g., through
the use of title, alt, etc.)?"