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Priority lists; multimedia


From: Joe Clark
Date: Sep 1, 2002 3:19PM

Quoth Emma Jane:

>Does anyone know how checkpoints are assigned to each of the three levels?

Mostly by throwing spaghetti at the wall to see if it'll stick.

*Allegedly*, if one fails to meet Priority 1 guidelines, large
numbers of disabled visitors will be *unable* to use your site. Miss
the Priority 2s? Many will have *difficulty* using your site. Lapse
on the 3s? Some undefined number will suffer *inconvenience* using
your site.

The priority listings are good enough, I suppose, though it's true
that ease of implementation is not covered (accesskey and tabindex is
very easy to implement, but they are clearly nice-to-have features,
not necessities). The problem becomes the suggested remedies, which
are almost farcically theoretical and divorced from the lived reality
of Web sites not domiciled at W3.org. Hang out on the various wai-*
mailing lists sometime. These people *do not get out much*, and many
accessibility techniques are merely words to them ("aural
stylesheet," "text description") rather than something they can prove
they've written or actually used. (The fact that it takes two months
of explaining before the WAI changes the neologism "auditory
description" to "audio description" proves they have, in fact, no
experience whatsoever *with* audio description.)

>Recently, however, I've been more and more aware of how hard
>(expensive?) it can be to accomplish Priority One on a site with
>video clips.

You can use decoded Line 21 captions and ordinary audio descriptions
in separate streams. SMIL embedding is simply not necessary. An
unannounced project that has been going strong for nearly a year at
CBC News Online uses decoded Line 21 captions. (That would be my
project, by the way.)

It is now possible to autoconvert (or semiautomatically convert) Line
21 captions into SMIL files, BTW, should one really wish to do that.

Accessibility <http://joeclark.org/access/>;
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