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Re: PDF accessibility


From: Monir ElRayes
Date: Feb 12, 2010 9:57AM

I would say it is the same yardstick as in web pages since we are dealing
with the same concept of decorative images in both formats. I think the line
has to be drawn based on whether the image, in the judgement of the
accessibility remediator, provides useful information or is used purely for
decorative purposes.

Best Regards,

Monir ElRayes
NetCentric Technologies

-----Original Message-----
[mailto: <EMAIL REMOVED> ] On Behalf Of Geof Collis
Sent: February-12-10 10:45 AM
To: WebAIM Discussion List
Subject: Re: [WebAIM] PDF accessibility

So what is the yardstick for whether or not an image is decorative or
and artifact? Is it the same as in web pages?

In the document I provided I wouldn't consider this image to be
decorative so where is the line drawn?



At 10:23 AM 2/12/2010, you wrote:
>To expand on your second paragraph... I generally agree that
>tagging is a necessary condition for accessibility, but I'd make a
>small modification to say that for all but the simplest of documents
>tagging is a necessary condition for accessibility.
>Since Reader does do tagging automatically for untagged documents,
>if you have a very simple document containing just a few paragraphs
>of plain text (I'm not suggesting that PDF is the best format for
>this, just that people do this) then the tags that Reader
>automatically generates will be sufficient. If you have additional
>structure in the document such as headings, lists, or tables then it
>is less likely that the tagging heuristic will be sufficient without
>further author input, and if you have images that need equivalents
>then you certainly won't get that in the auto-tagging process.
>I completely agree that to be certain that authors should provide
>tagging. I'm raising this point because I often hear people say
>that without tags a PDF document is completely inaccessible and this
>is not completely accurate. Few untagged documents will be
>completely accessible, but similarly few untagged documents will be
>completely inaccessible. I've seen few cases where an untagged PDF
>is less accessible to screen reader than a plain text alternative
>that people often request and usually the PDF offers more access
>features for screen reader users.
>Andrew Kirkpatrick
>Senior Product Manager, Accessibility
>Adobe Systems
>-----Original Message-----
>[mailto: <EMAIL REMOVED> ] On Behalf Of Monir ElRayes
>Sent: Friday, February 12, 2010 8:20 AM
>To: 'WebAIM Discussion List'
>Subject: Re: [WebAIM] PDF accessibility
>Just to clarify the importance of tagging- it is a necessary condition for
>accessibility (i.e. untagged documents are inaccessible as screen readers
>use the tags to navigate the structure of the document) but not a
>one (i.e. tagged documents can still be inaccessible if the tagging is not
>applied correctly -which is quite common- or if some of the other
>for accessibility are not met).
>When you use the "Add Tags to Document" command in Acrobat, Acrobat will
>to figure out how to structure the tagging for the document. It often
>succeeds with simple (linear text) documents but will typically require
>additional work to place the tags correctly for more "complex" documents.
>Best Regards,
>Monir ElRayes
>NetCentric Technologies
>-----Original Message-----
>[mailto: <EMAIL REMOVED> ] On Behalf Of Priti Rohra
>Sent: February-12-10 7:39 AM
>To: WebAIM Discussion List
>Subject: Re: [WebAIM] PDF accessibility
>Hi Geof,
>Marking the background image of the PDF file in question as an "Artifact"
>similar to specifying an empty alternate text for decorative image on web
>page. This will inform the screen reader to skip it and read the textual
>With regards to the level of accessibility of the file is concerned, it is
>an untagged PDF document--meaning information is not tagged using
>appropriate tags, such as headings, lists, paragraphs etc so the screen
>reader is identifying the same as a graphic. The screen reader may or may
>not read the information correctly i.e. in the right order, as headings, a
>list item or even a link.
>Hope this makes it clear for you.
>Thanks & Regards,
>Priti Rohra
>Senior Accessibility Consultant
>Net Systems Informatics (India) Pvt. Ltd.
>Web: www.n-syst.com|www.barrierbreak.com
>Blog: www.barrierbreak.com/blog
>Please don't print this email unless you really need to. This will preserve
>trees on our planet.
>----- Original Message -----
>From: "Geof Collis" < <EMAIL REMOVED> >
>To: "WebAIM Discussion List" < <EMAIL REMOVED> >
>Sent: Friday, February 12, 2010 5:55 PM
>Subject: Re: [WebAIM] PDF accessibility
> > So no ltext needed then?
> >
> > What about its level of accessibility?
> >
> >
> > I'm hearing the word "graphic" before each item and it appears to be a
> > list.
> > At 06:36 AM 2/12/2010, you wrote:
> >>No, this is decorative and should be an Artifact.
> >>
> >>Cheers, Karen
> >>
> >>-----Original Message-----
> >>[mailto: <EMAIL REMOVED> ] On Behalf Of Geof Collis
> >>Sent: February-11-10 7:31 PM
> >>Subject: [WebAIM] PDF accessibility
> >>
> >>Hi All
> >>
> >>If a pdf has an image imbedded in the background and text on top does
> >>the image need to be described?
> >>
> >>Here is the pdf in question.
> >>http://www.torontorehab.com/research/documents/Scholarship-flyer.pdf
> >>
> >>Also is this pdf accessible?
> >>
> >>cheers
> >>
> >>Geof
> >>
> >>
> >>Editor
> >>Accessibility News
> >>www.accessibilitynews.ca
> >>Accessibility News International
> >>www.accessibilitynewsinternational.com
> >>