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Re: FW: alt text size


From: Patrick H. Lauke
Date: Aug 21, 2006 2:10PM

Jared Smith wrote:

> Interesting approach with the square brackets.

Wan't this something Joe Clark proposed (or at least documented) in his

> the overhead of the brackets and corruption (perhaps this is not the
> best word) of the content

Yup, my thoughts exactly. I usually favour "sullying my content" ;-)

> most people would argue against identifying images as images
> within alternative text. And I can't think of any case where the word
> "image" would be appropriate within alternative text. The purpose of
> alternative text is to provide an alternative to the content and/or
> function of the image, not to identify the presence of an image.

Definitely. We're strangely in sync on this one, Jared.

> As far as length, I think identifying a hard maximum is dangerous. My
> own definition for alternative text length would be, "as succinctly as
> is appropriate and no more than a short sentence or two." Anything more
> concrete than that will likely result in insufficient or inappropriate
> alt text. More important would be instructing what alt text really is
> and how it is used.

Setting an arbitrary length in characters or words would definitely be
counter productive. It tries to pin hard and fast certainty where there
really needs to be case by case consideration.

Patrick H. Lauke