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Re: What success criteria does empty headings violate?


From: Patrick H. Lauke
Date: Jan 30, 2018 7:21AM

On 30/01/2018 14:14, Robert Fentress wrote:
> If you have an empty heading tag, which, if any, WCAG success criteria do
> you feel this violates? I think it should be viewed as violating WCAG SC
> 2.4.6 Headings and Labels
> <https://www.w3.org/TR/UNDERSTANDING-WCAG20/navigation-mechanisms-descriptive.html>
> (as
> does WAVE), since an empty heading cannot describe any "topic or
> purpose" but it is, nonetheless, semantically, a heading. Some other very
> knowledgable people disagree, considering this to be merely a violation of
> best practice. Others may also think it violates WCAG SC 1.3.1 Information
> and Relationships
> <https://www.w3.org/TR/UNDERSTANDING-WCAG20/content-structure-separation-programmatic.html>
> (such
> as WAVE, HTML Code_Sniffer and SiteImprove), and even WCAG SC 2.4.1 Bypass
> Blocks
> <https://www.w3.org/TR/UNDERSTANDING-WCAG20/navigation-mechanisms-skip.html>
> (such
> as WAVE), but those are probably more of stretch, in my opinion. What do
> you think?

I've been known to mark these sorts of things as failure just under
1.3.1. I can see the interpretation that this could also fall under
2.4.6 (though I generally "look" at the page for anything that acts as a
visible heading/label, and then determine if that is appropriately
descriptive - but thinking more deeply, you've got a point). I'd say
marking BOTH 1.3.1 and 2.4.6 as fails in this case is appropriate.

Patrick H. Lauke

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