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Re: text-only version of web pages


From: Chagnon | PubCom
Date: Jan 30, 2013 9:41AM

GF wrote, "When ordering groceries on line, it is not necessary that the
list of departments have a graphic incorporated for each department."

Actually, for the company selling groceries, it is necessary.

Statistical research shows that nearly 100% of fully sighted customers
interpret and comprehend the graphic before reading the actual text. So
website visitors will recognize an apple graphic for the produce department
and a fish graphic for the seafood counter faster and more accurately than
if only words designated the departments. This has been so convincingly
proven by marketing and psychological research for over 100 years that it is
no longer studied. It's an accepted truth in the business and advertising

The message contained in a graphic (that is, a photo, illustration, or logo)
is interpreted and comprehended in less than 1 second by someone who is
fully sighted (0.8 seconds if I remember correctly). That same message in
words will take several seconds, maybe even minutes to have the same impact,
and the worded message will often be misinterpreted or misread. The old
saying, "a picture is worth a thousand words" is accurate.

Your comment, "I have no objection to graphics where needed to tell the
story, but I do object when it is obvious that the designer is just showing
off," points in the wrong direction to find a solution for your visual

Websites with beautiful graphics, eye-catching designs, animations, rotating
slideshows and carousels, and all the other "show-off" stuff complained
about on WebAIM out-sell, out-market, out-persuade, and in all other
criteria outperform websites without these features.

So these visual features are not going to go away because they make a lot of
money for the website owners.

GF wrote, "I am not for outlawing graphics, but please give me the choice.
The ability to "X out" graphics would be appreciated."

You're right, that's a solution for you.

Given that all graphics on a website use the <image> tag in the HTML code,
it might be possible to create a code widget that can hide the graphics for
you. Click and graphics are hidden, click again and they are visible.

But I wouldn't wait for the solution to be built for you. Pigs will fly
before that happens!

Why not reach out to the coder community and find someone who can co-create
this with you? There's probably a college student somewhere in the world
studying computer science who needs a small project like this for his
coursework. Heck, there might be someone in Computer Science at Utah State
University, which hosts WebAim. It could be sold as a $9.99 code widget to
web developers, who then can add that feature to websites.

GF wrote, "My "Advice for Publishers", written for the benefit of those who
still read with their eyes but not well, is available as an email down

I'd love to read your ideas, GF. Please forward it to the list or to me
-Bevi Chagnon
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