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Re: Screen reader survey


From: Cliff Tyllick
Date: Dec 29, 2008 3:00PM

Jared, thanks for setting up this survey. I'll be among the highly
interested when the results are available.

I'm not sure these points will be revealed by your survey, but I wonder
about them:

-1- How many screen-reader users who rely on lists of headings have no
idea what headings should reveal? I asked one who works for an
accessibility mover and shaker to evaluate for me a page that had this
semantic structure, and she said she would have no trouble with it at
all (not exactly the ammo I needed to get the "owner" to fix it):
[no h1]
<h2>Site Navigation</h2>
<h4>nav link</h4>
<h4>nav link</h4>

<h5>Some other standard link in the left column</h5>

<li>link to subheading 1</li>
<li>link to subheading 2</li>
<h3>Subheading 1</h3>
<p>Each subheading is an h3 because the font style for the title makes
the title about the same size as an h2 would be.</p>
<h3>Subheading 2</h3>
<p>blech blech</p>

-2- How many screen-reader users even know they can tune their software
to reveal link attributes (such as "title") rather than link text? At a
recent accessibility competition, a couple of the testers (not
judges---the testers were people who rely on AT; their role was to give
feedback to the teams before the coding session was over) were amazed to
learn that they could do this.

Depending on the outcome of your study, these might be worth working in
to a future one. But you are going to reveal a great deal of helpful


Cliff Tyllick
Web development coordinator
Agency Communications Division
Texas Commission on Environmental Quality

>>> "Jared Smith" < <EMAIL REMOVED> > 12/18/2008 2:50 PM >>>
WebAIM is conducting a survey of screen reader users -

Web accessibility experts often say something like, "Screen reader
users prefer*" followed by some accessibility recommendation. However,
many of these recommendations are based on personal preference or
conjecture - often from sighted users who only test with screen
readers. The fact is that there is little data about screen reader
usage to back up these recommendations.

This survey will ask screen reader users about their usage and
preferences. If you are a full-time, part-time, or even occasional
screen reader user, please take a few minutes to complete the survey
and provide us with a few details on your screen reader usage and
preferences. We will be comparing results between those that rely on
screen readers and those that primarily use them for evaluation and
testing, so all screen reader users are invited to respond. Your
feedback will help influence the accessibility techniques that web
developers implement and that experts recommend. We'll be posting the
survey results in a few months.

Please post this announcement and/or the URL to other accessibility,
disability, and assistive technology lists. More screen reader user
responses will help solidify the recommendations made.


Jared Smith