WebAIM - Web Accessibility In Mind

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Re: Links in context - or not?


From: Wayne Dick
Date: Oct 31, 2008 10:40AM

I many ways I think this discussion is off point. You are
discussing accommodation. Accessibility standards are hard
enough to teach developers. I think asking them to code
accommodations into pages will be the place where they just
conclude that accessibility compliance is just too hard.

Regarding links: With a screen reader never bothers me
mid-sentence. Most sentences that include links are not literary
enough to require an uninterrupted flow of reading.

The key thing to emphasize lists of group similar links under
descriptive headings to enable heading navigation up to the
important list. That is an effective accessibility action that
really speeds up reading.

As far as underline is concerned, I like it. When I use my eyes
it is usually with a talking browser. I use my eyes to pick out
gross objects. The underlines make the links stand out. So, I
like it.
However, I am 100% sure you can find another person with partial
sight who will hate it. We all adapt differently.

My main hope is that I get an accessibility compliant page. I
have preferences on how to meet the standards, but I can do
something reasonable with compliant code. Which standard do you
use, 508, WCAG 1 or 2, other national or state laws the rely on
WCAG as a base... Most standards cover everything, WCAG 2 is the
easiest to read and implement. It doesn't matter. If the page
meets standards, assistive technology can to something


----- Original Message -----
From: "Karlen Communications" < <EMAIL REMOVED> >
To: "'WebAIM Discussion List'" < <EMAIL REMOVED> >
Sent: Friday, October 31, 2008 7:59 AM
Subject: Re: [WebAIM] Links in context - or not?

> Agreed, as a person who uses JAWS I use the list of links, list
> of headings,
> List of form controls...anything that lets me get a better look
> at the
> "content" on the page without spending hours reading through
> the page. :-)
> Cheers, Karen
> -----Original Message-----
> [mailto: <EMAIL REMOVED> ] On Behalf Of
> Cliff Tyllick
> Sent: Friday, October 31, 2008 10:27 AM
> To: WebAIM Discussion List
> Subject: Re: [WebAIM] Links in context - or not?
> Others have covered this issue well from the standpoint of
> impact on people
> who have some vision, but no one has pointed out that this is a
> change that
> wouldn't particularly benefit people who must rely on an
> assistive
> technology that reads the text to them.
> JAWS and other true ATs can produce and read a list of all
> links in the
> page, regardless of where they're located. I haven't worked
> with very many
> folks who use AT, but every one I've encountered uses this
> feature to skim
> the contents of a page, just as sighted readers will first scan
> for links
> without really reading the text.
> Sighted or not, users show us that links in context, especially
> when the
> wording of the text in each link is meaningful, work best for
> them. So going
> to the trouble of sequestering the links at the end of the
> paragraph or in a
> sidebar creates some new problems and offers no benefit -- even
> though I
> highly respect one leader in the field of Web design who
> espouses that
> approach.
> Cliff Tyllick
> Web development coordinator
> Agency Communications Division
> Texas Commission on Environmental Quality
> 512-239-4516
>>>> "Webb, KerryA" < <EMAIL REMOVED> > 10/31/2008 12:08 AM
>>>> >>>
> One of our Web managers has asked me for advice on this topic:
> To improve access for the visually impaired on our new website,
> we are
> adopting this approach:
> * Minimising the number of links in the middle of sentences -
> as it
> interrupts the screen reading process
> * Preferably having links at the end of sentences
> * Or better still having links under a Relevant links heading
> My initial response was that all users would be better served
> by having
> links in context, but I said that I'd ask if anyone was better
> informed
> about this.
> Any suggestions?
> Thanks
> Kerry Webb
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