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Re: A clear EU accessibility law proposed? At what cost?

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From: Birkir R. Gunnarsson
Date: Dec 21, 2012 8:10AM


I am writing commentary on this directive on behalf of the European
Blind Union, will be finalizing the draft with their Access to
Information Commission and Carine Marcin.
Thanks for an insightful review dr. Hassel, it could come in handy.

My main points so far:
1. there do not seem to be any consequences of non-compliance.
2. the standard does not cover documents and electronic forms that
often are offerred via these websites (no fault of WCAG per se of
course, it is not designed to be a non-web documents standard, but it
could of course be applied as such, plus there are accessibility
guidelines for PDF and other document types),
3. the directive does not address mobile apps.
4. The directive does not directly address the accessibility of social
media presence of the entities whose websites fall under its
definition. It is at least equally impotant that people can follow the
social media channels of public entities.
5. it does not address the accessibility of external hardware or
software security mechanism (talking number generators, CAPTCHA etc.
though of course WCAG addresses CAPTCHA and can easily be applied to
other types of security mechanisms).
I will be watching this thread with interest to see if there are other
things I should bring up, or something I should write up differently.
Cheers
-B

On 12/21/12, Jukka K. Korpela < <EMAIL REMOVED> > wrote:
> 2012-12-21 13:23, Dr Jonathan Hassell wrote:
>
>> Early this month the European Commission issued a proposal
> > for a directive on “Accessibility of Public Sector Bodies’ Websites”.
>
> It is an interesting idea. It may become much more interesting when the
> content of the proposal will be disclosed. What I mean is that the
> current wording of the proposal just verbosely says that public websites
> must be accessible. As such, this means approximately nothing. It might
> be the intention that this will later be made much more exact, such as
> requirement on WCAG 2.0 AA compliance.
>
> But it’s a positive step forward that the EU is considering measures to
> enforce accessibility requirements, not just issue recommendations that
> are routinely ignored by everyone, including the EU’s own web site. This
> is something that I talked about six years ago in “Breaking the
> barriers: digital accessibility”:
> http://www.cs.tut.fi/~jkorpela/www/bb.html
>
> While I share the concerns about all the real-world accessibility issues
> that are not covered by WCAG 2.0, I think what changes things is rules
> that site owners MUST take seriously. It may be trivial and very modest
> to require that all img elements must have alt attributes, and it is
> trivially easy to fool automated checkers in such issues (just generate
> alt="foo", literally). But still moves like that will force site owners,
> designers, and implementors to take some accessibility aspects
> seriously. This will be a much stronger "awareness raising" action than
> all the recommendations combined.
>
> Yucca
>
>
> > > >