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RE: Fixed font-sizes and WAI or 508


From: Mark Magennis
Date: Feb 2, 2004 4:33AM

Lennart Borgman wrote:
> > However I believed that the guidelines said that you
> > should not use fixed font-sizes.

Jukka K. Korpela replied:

> As far as I can see, the guidelines don't say that.

Isn't this covered by WAI checkpoint 3.4 which states "Use relative rather
than absolute units in markup language attribute values and style sheet
property values"? Font size is an attribute value and a fixed size is an
absolute unit. I've always assumed that 3.4 therefore rules against fixed
font sizes. Forgive me if this has been discussed before, but if I'm wrong
then can you explain why?

> Since fixed font-sizes, which are typically small,
> affect far more people than most
> WCAG 1.0 guidelines, this just proves that accessibility shall not be
> identified with accessibility guidelines

I absolutely agree. Even if 3.4 does rule out fixed font sizes, putting it
at priority 2 is too low. The Uppsala University site uses a font size for
content and navigation which is way too small for a lot of people to read. A
lot more than most of us realise. The fact that it cannot be resized using
the standard browser controls means that, for all those people, the
information and navigation are inaccessible. It should therefore be priority
1, defined by WAI as:

"A Web content developer must satisfy this checkpoint. Otherwise, one or
more groups will find it impossible to access information in the document.
Satisfying this checkpoint is a basic requirement for some groups to be able
to use Web documents."


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