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Re: Accessibilty & Flash Content


From: Andrew Kirkpatrick
Date: Jan 17, 2003 1:05PM

"moving" content doesn't come into the WCAG until Priority 2 - "7.3 Until user agents allow users to freeze
moving content, avoid movement in pages." You said you're designing a site to be W3C WCAG "A"
compliant, so as long as it isn't flashing/flickering you can claim compliance.

Compliant or not, there is the possibility that some people will find the movement a distraction, so
proceeding with care is advised.

With regard to keyboard accessibility and flash, you can Flash MX and hide the motion in the swf from
assistive technologies. You can also make the swf invisible both to assistive technologies and the
keyboard in general by using the wmode parameter in the object tag and setting the swf to opaque or
transparent rather than the default of "window".


If you want to make the content unavailable to people using screen readers you have two easy options:
1) if you

1/17/2003 10:50:14 AM, Shane Anderson < <EMAIL REMOVED> > wrote:

>The problem with flash is that someone using assistive technology can get stuck in the flash movie. This is
very frustrating, if you can not see what is going on. Also, it is not wise to assume that people with
disabilities do not want your content. People with disabilities are into _everything_. Erik Weihenmayer just
finished climbing the tallest peaks on the seven continents. Why would a blind guy want to do that?
>For ideas on a possible solution take a look at the Utah State University home page.
(http://www.usu.edu) While they do have flash navigation, the first link is to a non-flash version.
>Notice that the url has "?flash=off" at the end. A serverside script takes it from there with session
variables. I beleive they are using Cold Fusion.
>If you are new to serverside scripting, look into PHP it is free and easy to learn. Pick up a book or visit
(http://www.phpbuilder.com) and learn about sessions.
>Shane Anderson
>Programmer Analyst
>Web Accessibility in Mind (WebAIM.org)
>Center for Persons with Disabilities (cpd.usu.edu)
>Utah State University (usu.edu)
>Chet said:
>I'm designing an accessible site (to W3C A standards) and not sure what to
>do with a flash movie. The logo will be a subtle flash movie with a static
>picture and text fading in & out. I know we should avoid 'blinking,
>flickering or moving content'. The site will be primarily for people without
>disability hence happy to have a flash movie, however how can I provide a
>facility to switch the movie off?
>I thought
>a) put a text link to the side 'switch moving logo off' & then replace this
>with a static logo. But how would I do this?? How could this be done site
>wide - so each time they move to a new page the flash logo is replaced by a
>still image logo? i thought javascript - but don't know where to start.
>b) use flash controls to switch the movie off (play, stop etc) and again
>make this site wide. there may be an extension - but how suitable for my
>Also any advice on whether moving text flash movie presents a particular
>accessibility problem? i am saying this because their is clear guidance on
>making flash movies accessible through alternate content - so may be moving
>flash movies aren't that big a deal?
>look forward to comments,
>To subscribe, unsubscribe, or view list archives,
>visit http://www.webaim.org/discussion/

Andrew Kirkpatrick
CPB/WGBH National Center for Accessible Media
125 Western Ave.
Boston, MA 02134
Web site: ncam.wgbh.org

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