WebAIM - Web Accessibility In Mind

E-mail List Archives

Thread: Re[2]: Include default text?

for

Number of posts in this thread: 32 (In chronological order)

From: Jared Smith
Date: Thu, Oct 21 2004 2:35PM
Subject: Re[2]: Include default text?
No previous message | Next message →

> So, can I legitimately use Bobby's AAA icon even though I get that one
> error??

Personally, if you have met all of the WCAG priorities, then you are
WCAG compliant. As far as Bobby's icon - it really doesn't mean
anything except that Bobby was able to evaluate a FEW of the WCAG
priorities and found no obvious errors. Nearly all of the priorities
cannot be verified with ANY automated validator. For this reason, the
Bobby icon has become a bit of misnomer with accessibility. The Bobby
site states that you must also perform the manual checks it lists
before posting the icon.

For example, a study I heard of found that around 80% (if I recall
correctly) of US Government Web sites that display the Bobby icon don't
even pass Bobby 508. There's a real danger in assuming that passing
Bobby (or validator X) means that you are accessible, when in fact
Bobby or any other validation program can only check a FEW of the
necessary checkpoints. I think Bobby checks 4 of the 16 Section 508
Checkpoints, and of those, a human check is still necessary to ensure
accessibility. Bobby can check that alt text is present and will say
that your page is accessible if you have alt text, but it can't check
to ensure that the text is equivalent and appropriate, as is required
by the accessibility standards. The posting of the Bobby (or whatever)
icon tends to reinforce the false idea that Bobby compliance =
standards compliance = accessibility, which is often far from true.

Still, if you have done the manual checking, feel that you are
compliant, and want to share this with your site visitors (most of
whom could probably care less), then go ahead and post the icon. You
might also look at the official W3C icons -
http://www.w3.org/WAI/WCAG1-Conformance

Jared Smith
WebAIM (Web Accessibility In Mind)
Center for Persons with Disabilities
Utah State University

From: Glenda
Date: Thu, Oct 21 2004 2:50PM
Subject: Re: Re[2]: Include default text?
← Previous message | Next message →

Thanks JARED,

I definitely don't rely solely on Bobby to determine accessibility. I use
several steps to check the site. I'll look at the W3C icons too. This site
is on free and inexpensive AT, so this audience may care a wee bit more
about validation - not sure though. I also thought it might increase hits
with search engines.

Cheers,
Glenda

-----Original Message-----
From: Jared Smith [mailto: = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = ]
Sent: Thursday, October 21, 2004 1:32 PM
To: "WebAIM Discussion List"
Subject: [WebAIM] Re[2]: Include default text?



> So, can I legitimately use Bobby's AAA icon even though I get that one
> error??

Personally, if you have met all of the WCAG priorities, then you are
WCAG compliant. As far as Bobby's icon - it really doesn't mean
anything except that Bobby was able to evaluate a FEW of the WCAG
priorities and found no obvious errors. Nearly all of the priorities
cannot be verified with ANY automated validator. For this reason, the
Bobby icon has become a bit of misnomer with accessibility. The Bobby
site states that you must also perform the manual checks it lists
before posting the icon.

For example, a study I heard of found that around 80% (if I recall
correctly) of US Government Web sites that display the Bobby icon don't
even pass Bobby 508. There's a real danger in assuming that passing
Bobby (or validator X) means that you are accessible, when in fact
Bobby or any other validation program can only check a FEW of the
necessary checkpoints. I think Bobby checks 4 of the 16 Section 508
Checkpoints, and of those, a human check is still necessary to ensure
accessibility. Bobby can check that alt text is present and will say
that your page is accessible if you have alt text, but it can't check
to ensure that the text is equivalent and appropriate, as is required
by the accessibility standards. The posting of the Bobby (or whatever)
icon tends to reinforce the false idea that Bobby compliance =
standards compliance = accessibility, which is often far from true.

Still, if you have done the manual checking, feel that you are
compliant, and want to share this with your site visitors (most of
whom could probably care less), then go ahead and post the icon. You
might also look at the official W3C icons -
http://www.w3.org/WAI/WCAG1-Conformance

Jared Smith
WebAIM (Web Accessibility In Mind)
Center for Persons with Disabilities
Utah State University

----
To subscribe or unsubscribe, visit http://www.webaim.org/discussion/

---
Incoming mail is certified Virus Free.
Checked by AVG anti-virus system (http://www.grisoft.com).
Version: 6.0.781 / Virus Database: 527 - Release Date: 10/21/04

---
Outgoing mail is certified Virus Free.
Checked by AVG anti-virus system (http://www.grisoft.com).
Version: 6.0.781 / Virus Database: 527 - Release Date: 10/21/04

From: Jukka K. Korpela
Date: Thu, Oct 21 2004 3:35PM
Subject: Re: Re[2]: Include default text?
← Previous message | Next message →

On Thu, 21 Oct 2004, glenda wrote:

> I definitely don't rely solely on Bobby to determine accessibility.

Bobby should be ignored. Some experts who really know what it does and how
wrong it works in many ways might find it a useful tool, but I doubt that.

> I'll look at the W3C icons too.

Don't. Accessibility icons work against accessibility. This becomes
evident if you even once look at your page and imagine that you are one
of the people to whom accessibility matters. What could _they_ possibly
benefit from the icons? They are just distraction, pointless enigmas and
disturbance.

But you can look at the W3C WAI guidelines and checklists, of course.
Just remember that they are not accessibility. They cover some aspects of
accessibility, mostly in a right way, but only partially.

--
Jukka "Yucca" Korpela, http://www.cs.tut.fi/~jkorpela/

From: Jukka K. Korpela
Date: Thu, Oct 21 2004 3:41PM
Subject: Re: Include default text?
← Previous message | Next message →

On Thu, 21 Oct 2004, Jared Smith wrote:

> The key is the "Until user agents handle empty controls correctly"
> Virtually all user agents expose empty form controls to the end user.
> So, in my opinion, this checkpoint can be ignored.

You put it too mildly. It _should_ be ignored. You _must not_ put any
dummy placeholder or explanatory text into a text input field. Such text
is worse than useless, since it causes extra trouble (it needs to be
removed before typing actual content, and then again a user might fail to
do this and enter incorrect data), it could be misunderstood as a
meaningful default value (that's what the initial content is for!), etc.
Remember that accessibility is also about being accessible to people whose
cognitive and mental abilities are far more limited than yours. Don't
create any extra puzzles or challenges for them.

(So was the WCAG 1.0 checkpoint wrong from the beginning? Yes. It caused
more trouble than good. Some people actually applied it, and who's going
to fix all those prefilled fields now?)

--
Jukka "Yucca" Korpela, http://www.cs.tut.fi/~jkorpela/

From: Glenda
Date: Thu, Oct 21 2004 3:46PM
Subject: Re: Re[2]: Include default text?
← Previous message | Next message →

I can see your point about the accessibility icons. But isn't it somewhat
similar to establishments putting the wheelchair sticker on the front door?
As a wheelchair user, it indicates to me that place MAY be more
wheelchair-friendly than the place next door.

Glenda

-----Original Message-----
From: jkorpela [mailto: = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = ]
Sent: Thursday, October 21, 2004 2:32 PM
To: WebAIM Discussion List
Subject: Re: [WebAIM] Re[2]: Include default text?



On Thu, 21 Oct 2004, glenda wrote:

> I definitely don't rely solely on Bobby to determine accessibility.

Bobby should be ignored. Some experts who really know what it does and how
wrong it works in many ways might find it a useful tool, but I doubt that.

> I'll look at the W3C icons too.

Don't. Accessibility icons work against accessibility. This becomes
evident if you even once look at your page and imagine that you are one
of the people to whom accessibility matters. What could _they_ possibly
benefit from the icons? They are just distraction, pointless enigmas and
disturbance.

But you can look at the W3C WAI guidelines and checklists, of course.
Just remember that they are not accessibility. They cover some aspects of
accessibility, mostly in a right way, but only partially.

--
Jukka "Yucca" Korpela, http://www.cs.tut.fi/~jkorpela/

----
To subscribe or unsubscribe, visit http://www.webaim.org/discussion/

---
Incoming mail is certified Virus Free.
Checked by AVG anti-virus system (http://www.grisoft.com).
Version: 6.0.781 / Virus Database: 527 - Release Date: 10/21/04

---
Outgoing mail is certified Virus Free.
Checked by AVG anti-virus system (http://www.grisoft.com).
Version: 6.0.781 / Virus Database: 527 - Release Date: 10/21/04

From: Steven Faulkner
Date: Thu, Oct 21 2004 3:49PM
Subject: Re: Include default text?
← Previous message | Next message →



If want to include default place holders, you can use JavaScript to clear a
field of its default text on focus.

Example:
<input type="text" size="3" value="default text"
onfocus="if(this.value=='default text'){this.value=''}" />



with regards

Steven Faulkner
Web Accessibility Consultant
National Information &amp; Library Service (NILS)
454 Glenferrie Road
Kooyong Victoria 3144
Phone: (613) 9864 9281
Fax: (613) 9864 9210
Email: = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED =

National Information Library Service
A subsidiary of RBS.RVIB.VAF Ltd.


-----Original Message-----
From: glenda [mailto: = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = ]
Sent: Friday, 22 October 2004 5:55 AM
To: WebAIM Discussion List
Subject: [WebAIM] Include default text?




Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 1.0 Guideline 10.4 states:

"Include default text in form controls"

I think I read in "Constructing Accessible Web Sites" that this is no longer
required for current technology. Is this definitely the case?

I am developing a site and no default text is the only reason its not
Triple-A compliant, which is what I would like. Is there anyway to hide
default text so only screen readers know its there?? Personally I think
default text would confused new/inexperienced users as they may know how to
get rid of it.

Any thoughts?

Cheers,
Glenda

---
Outgoing mail is certified Virus Free.
Checked by AVG anti-virus system (http://www.grisoft.com).
Version: 6.0.781 / Virus Database: 527 - Release Date: 10/21/04

----
To subscribe or unsubscribe, visit http://www.webaim.org/discussion/

From: Patrick H. Lauke
Date: Thu, Oct 21 2004 3:55PM
Subject: Re: Re[2]: Include default text?
← Previous message | Next message →

glenda wrote:
> I can see your point about the accessibility icons. But isn't it somewhat
> similar to establishments putting the wheelchair sticker on the front door?
> As a wheelchair user, it indicates to me that place MAY be more
> wheelchair-friendly than the place next door.

I'd say it's more like putting the wheelchair sticker inside the
wheelchair-accessible toilets....once you're able to get to the WCAG
stickers on the page (thinking more in terms of users with screenreaders
, who may not be able to see the badges at a glance without first
interacting with the site), you may already get a good idea whether or
not a site has been constructed in an accessibility-friendly way.

If at all necessary, I wouldn't be adverse to finding such badges on a
separate accessibility statement page, but not plastered on the front
page of a site (except for the "fizzy good feel nice" effect it gives
the developers and/or site owners)

IMHO, of course...

Patrick H. Lauke
_____________________________________________________
re

From: Christian Heilmann
Date: Thu, Oct 21 2004 4:00PM
Subject: Re: Re[2]: Include default text?
← Previous message | Next message →

"glenda" wrote:

>I can see your point about the accessibility icons. But isn't it somewhat
>similar to establishments putting the wheelchair sticker on the front door?
>As a wheelchair user, it indicates to me that place MAY be more
>wheelchair-friendly than the place next door.
>
>
And how would an icon and a link to the WAI site at the end of the
document help a blind user using a screen reader? If you want to help
give a link to a good accessibility statement explaining the techniques
you used at the beginning of the document. WAI or W3C icons are a lot
about showing off, they don't fulfil any real purpose.

From: Glenda
Date: Thu, Oct 21 2004 4:34PM
Subject: Re: Re[2]: Include default text?
← Previous message | Next message →

How come web accessibility is generally thought of in terms of blind users?
What about all the other disability types?

-----Original Message-----
From: lists38 [mailto: = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = ]
Sent: Thursday, October 21, 2004 3:26 PM
To: WebAIM Discussion List
Subject: Re: [WebAIM] Re[2]: Include default text?



"glenda" wrote:

>I can see your point about the accessibility icons. But isn't it somewhat
>similar to establishments putting the wheelchair sticker on the front door?
>As a wheelchair user, it indicates to me that place MAY be more
>wheelchair-friendly than the place next door.
>
>
And how would an icon and a link to the WAI site at the end of the
document help a blind user using a screen reader? If you want to help
give a link to a good accessibility statement explaining the techniques
you used at the beginning of the document. WAI or W3C icons are a lot
about showing off, they don't fulfil any real purpose.

----
To subscribe or unsubscribe, visit http://www.webaim.org/discussion/

---
Incoming mail is certified Virus Free.
Checked by AVG anti-virus system (http://www.grisoft.com).
Version: 6.0.781 / Virus Database: 527 - Release Date: 10/21/04

---
Outgoing mail is certified Virus Free.
Checked by AVG anti-virus system (http://www.grisoft.com).
Version: 6.0.781 / Virus Database: 527 - Release Date: 10/21/04

From: Austin, Darrel
Date: Thu, Oct 21 2004 4:40PM
Subject: Re: Re[2]: Include default text?
← Previous message | Next message →

> How come web accessibility is generally thought of in terms of blind
> users? What about all the other disability types?

And what about all the non-disability benefits of accessibility prudence?

-Darrel

From: Patrick H. Lauke
Date: Thu, Oct 21 2004 4:45PM
Subject: Re: Include default text?
← Previous message | Next message →

steven.faulkner wrote:
>
>
> If want to include default place holders, you can use JavaScript to clear a
> field of its default text on focus.
and users without javascript still have to manually empty the field
(albeit most user agents will put a selection around the entire current
content of a text entry field when you access it, allowing to
wipe/overwrite it by simply typing). How about the reverse: having the
input empty at first, with the "default" in the title, then use
javascript attached to the onload event to both prepopulate the elements
and add the onfocus functionality?

Patrick H. Lauke
_____________________________________________________
re

From: Christian Heilmann
Date: Thu, Oct 21 2004 4:50PM
Subject: Re: Re[2]: Include default text?
← Previous message | Next message →

glenda wrote:

>How come web accessibility is generally thought of in terms of blind users?
>What about all the other disability types?
>
>
That was just an example. Fact is that a w3c icon is as useless to a
keyboard user or a colourblind person. A specific accessibility
statement for the site makes sense for all of them.

From: Derek Featherstone
Date: Thu, Oct 21 2004 5:16PM
Subject: Re: Include default text?
← Previous message | Next message →

On Thursday, October 21, 2004 5:42 PM, steven.faulkner wrote:
> If want to include default place holders, you can use
> JavaScript to clear a field of its default text on focus.
>
> Example:
> <input type="text" size="3" value="default text"
> onfocus="if(this.value=='default text'){this.value=''}" />

Of course, in non-JS capable browsers (like on my PDA for example), or where
JS is off, this default value will be a nuisance. If we are relying on JS to
clear it, perhaps we should use appropriate DOM methods to place the default
there instead, if and only if the JS is available? It would certainly be
more universal and you'd be able to be more confident that the JS could be
used properly to clear it out...

Just my 2 cents...

Best regards,
Derek.
--
Derek Featherstone = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED =
phone: 613.599.9784; toll-free: 1.866.932.4878 (North America)
Web Accessibility: http://www.wats.ca
Personal: http://www.boxofchocolates.ca

From: lister
Date: Thu, Oct 21 2004 8:36PM
Subject: Re: Re[2]: Include default text?
← Previous message | Next message →

This has been a good icon discussion which I think could be tied to the
"making a business case for accessibility" issue Glenda brought up several
days ago. While an icon should not replace a good accessibility statement,
the "placard" aspect of an icon provides something upper management can see
(and point to) for their investment in accessibility. I agree it would be
best left out of the way on an accessibility statement, rather than on every
page. Of course, it also promotes accessibility and standards in general...
when someone sees it for the first time it may turn them on to the whole
movement!

..matt

-----Original Message-----
From: lists38 [mailto: = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = ]
Sent: Thursday, October 21, 2004 3:20 PM
To: WebAIM Discussion List
Subject: Re: [WebAIM] Re[2]: Include default text?



glenda wrote:

>How come web accessibility is generally thought of in terms of blind users?
>What about all the other disability types?
>
>
That was just an example. Fact is that a w3c icon is as useless to a
keyboard user or a colourblind person. A specific accessibility
statement for the site makes sense for all of them.

----
To subscribe or unsubscribe, visit http://www.webaim.org/discussion/

From: Steven Faulkner
Date: Thu, Oct 21 2004 5:41PM
Subject: Re: Include default text?
← Previous message | Next message →


It appears that as of september 2003 some assitive tech (Ouspoken: screen
reader for MAC) still has issues with empty form fields.
Refer to:
http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/w3c-wai-ig/2003JulSep/0422.html

with regards

Steven Faulkner
Web Accessibility Consultant
National Information &amp; Library Service (NILS)
454 Glenferrie Road
Kooyong Victoria 3144
Phone: (613) 9864 9281
Fax: (613) 9864 9210
Email: = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED =

National Information Library Service
A subsidiary of RBS.RVIB.VAF Ltd.



-----Original Message-----
From: glenda [mailto: = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = ]
Sent: Friday, 22 October 2004 5:55 AM
To: WebAIM Discussion List
Subject: [WebAIM] Include default text?




Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 1.0 Guideline 10.4 states:

&quot;Include default text in form controls&quot;

I think I read in &quot;Constructing Accessible Web Sites&quot; that this is no longer
required for current technology. Is this definitely the case?

I am developing a site and no default text is the only reason its not
Triple-A compliant, which is what I would like. Is there anyway to hide
default text so only screen readers know its there?? Personally I think
default text would confused new/inexperienced users as they may know how to
get rid of it.

Any thoughts?

Cheers,
Glenda

---
Outgoing mail is certified Virus Free.
Checked by AVG anti-virus system (http://www.grisoft.com).
Version: 6.0.781 / Virus Database: 527 - Release Date: 10/21/04

----
To subscribe or unsubscribe, visit http://www.webaim.org/discussion/

From: reply-to:to:subject:in-reply-to:mime-version:content-type:content-transfer-encoding:references;
Date: Thu, Oct 21 2004 8:50PM
Subject: Re: Re[2]: Include default text?
← Previous message | Next message →

This leads me to a question I've been meaning to ask. I have
accessibility statements on my sites with a link to them in the footer
of all pages (and a link to privacy statements), and also use a
meta-tag

<link rel="help" href="http://www.whateversite.com/access.html"
title="Our Accessibility Information and Key Legend" />

1) How do people feel about not have the accessibility link above the fold?
2) How do people feel about using the to point to
an accessibility page?

Thanks - Susan


On Thu, 21 Oct 2004 19:33:08 -0700, lister wrote:
>
> This has been a good icon discussion which I think could be tied to the
> "making a business case for accessibility" issue Glenda brought up several
> days ago. While an icon should not replace a good accessibility statement,
> the "placard" aspect of an icon provides something upper management can see
> (and point to) for their investment in accessibility. I agree it would be
> best left out of the way on an accessibility statement, rather than on every
> page. Of course, it also promotes accessibility and standards in general...
> when someone sees it for the first time it may turn them on to the whole
> movement!
>
> .matt
>
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: lists38 [mailto: = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = ]
> Sent: Thursday, October 21, 2004 3:20 PM
> To: WebAIM Discussion List
> Subject: Re: [WebAIM] Re[2]: Include default text?
>
> glenda wrote:
>
> >How come web accessibility is generally thought of in terms of blind users?
> >What about all the other disability types?
> >
> >
> That was just an example. Fact is that a w3c icon is as useless to a
> keyboard user or a colourblind person. A specific accessibility
> statement for the site makes sense for all of them.
>
> ----
> To subscribe or unsubscribe, visit http://www.webaim.org/discussion/
>
> ----
> To subscribe or unsubscribe, visit http://www.webaim.org/discussion/
>
>


--
Susan R. Grossman
= EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED =

From: Steven Faulkner
Date: Thu, Oct 21 2004 5:47PM
Subject: Re: Include default text?
← Previous message | Next message →

I agree derek, my example was incomplete....

with regards
steve

-----Original Message-----
From: feather [mailto: = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = ]
Sent: Friday, 22 October 2004 9:08 AM
To: WebAIM Discussion List
Subject: Re: [WebAIM] Include default text?



On Thursday, October 21, 2004 5:42 PM, steven.faulkner wrote:
> If want to include default place holders, you can use
> JavaScript to clear a field of its default text on focus.
>
> Example:
> <input type="text" size="3" value="default text"
> onfocus="if(this.value=='default text'){this.value=''}" />

Of course, in non-JS capable browsers (like on my PDA for example), or where
JS is off, this default value will be a nuisance. If we are relying on JS to
clear it, perhaps we should use appropriate DOM methods to place the default
there instead, if and only if the JS is available? It would certainly be
more universal and you'd be able to be more confident that the JS could be
used properly to clear it out...

Just my 2 cents...

Best regards,
Derek.
--
Derek Featherstone = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED =
phone: 613.599.9784; toll-free: 1.866.932.4878 (North America)
Web Accessibility: http://www.wats.ca
Personal: http://www.boxofchocolates.ca

----
To subscribe or unsubscribe, visit http://www.webaim.org/discussion/

From: Andrew Arch
Date: Thu, Oct 21 2004 9:15PM
Subject: Re: Re[2]: Include default text?
← Previous message | Next message →

Susan,

Just a quick comment on your current link title - drop the "Our" and just
have "Accessibility Information and Key Legend" - much easier to find
amongst a list of links.

Andrew

-----Original Message-----
From: susan.rgrossman [mailto: = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = ]
Sent: Friday, 22 October 2004 12:47 PM
To: WebAIM Discussion List
Subject: Re: [WebAIM] Re[2]: Include default text?



This leads me to a question I've been meaning to ask. I have
accessibility statements on my sites with a link to them in the footer
of all pages (and a link to privacy statements), and also use a
meta-tag

<link rel="help" href="http://www.whateversite.com/access.html"
title="Our Accessibility Information and Key Legend" />

1) How do people feel about not have the accessibility link above the fold?
2) How do people feel about using the to point to
an accessibility page?

Thanks - Susan


On Thu, 21 Oct 2004 19:33:08 -0700, lister
wrote:
>
> This has been a good icon discussion which I think could be tied to the
> "making a business case for accessibility" issue Glenda brought up several
> days ago. While an icon should not replace a good accessibility statement,
> the "placard" aspect of an icon provides something upper management can
see
> (and point to) for their investment in accessibility. I agree it would be
> best left out of the way on an accessibility statement, rather than on
every
> page. Of course, it also promotes accessibility and standards in
general...
> when someone sees it for the first time it may turn them on to the whole
> movement!
>
> .matt
>
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: lists38 [mailto: = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = ]
> Sent: Thursday, October 21, 2004 3:20 PM
> To: WebAIM Discussion List
> Subject: Re: [WebAIM] Re[2]: Include default text?
>
> glenda wrote:
>
> >How come web accessibility is generally thought of in terms of blind
users?
> >What about all the other disability types?
> >
> >
> That was just an example. Fact is that a w3c icon is as useless to a
> keyboard user or a colourblind person. A specific accessibility
> statement for the site makes sense for all of them.
>
> ----
> To subscribe or unsubscribe, visit http://www.webaim.org/discussion/
>
> ----
> To subscribe or unsubscribe, visit http://www.webaim.org/discussion/
>
>


--
Susan R. Grossman
= EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED =

----
To subscribe or unsubscribe, visit http://www.webaim.org/discussion/

From: Glenda
Date: Fri, Oct 22 2004 12:25AM
Subject: Re: Re[2]: Include default text?
← Previous message | Next message →

Thanks for your support Matt,

Perhaps my "wheelchair sticker on the front door" wasn't the right analogy.
I think you got at the point better than I did. Perhaps the icon isn't for
the blind visitor using the screen reader. Perhaps its for the average AB
user to raise awareness about Web accessibility. Why shouldn't upper
management and/or site owners "show off" by putting the icon on the home
page rather than hidden away on an accessibility statement page which the
average AB probably wouldn't click on? If businesses are members of the
Better Business Bureau or another kind of recognition, isn't that usually up
front somewhere? Why not the same with Web accessibility?

Interesting discussion.

Cheers,
Glenda

Ps AB = able-bodied

-----Original Message-----
From: lister [mailto: = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = ]
Sent: Thursday, October 21, 2004 7:33 PM
To: WebAIM Discussion List
Subject: Re: [WebAIM] Re[2]: Include default text?



This has been a good icon discussion which I think could be tied to the
"making a business case for accessibility" issue Glenda brought up several
days ago. While an icon should not replace a good accessibility statement,
the "placard" aspect of an icon provides something upper management can see
(and point to) for their investment in accessibility. I agree it would be
best left out of the way on an accessibility statement, rather than on every
page. Of course, it also promotes accessibility and standards in general...
when someone sees it for the first time it may turn them on to the whole
movement!

..matt

-----Original Message-----
From: lists38 [mailto: = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = ]
Sent: Thursday, October 21, 2004 3:20 PM
To: WebAIM Discussion List
Subject: Re: [WebAIM] Re[2]: Include default text?



glenda wrote:

>How come web accessibility is generally thought of in terms of blind users?
>What about all the other disability types?
>
>
That was just an example. Fact is that a w3c icon is as useless to a
keyboard user or a colourblind person. A specific accessibility
statement for the site makes sense for all of them.

----
To subscribe or unsubscribe, visit http://www.webaim.org/discussion/

----
To subscribe or unsubscribe, visit http://www.webaim.org/discussion/

---
Incoming mail is certified Virus Free.
Checked by AVG anti-virus system (http://www.grisoft.com).
Version: 6.0.781 / Virus Database: 527 - Release Date: 10/21/04

---
Outgoing mail is certified Virus Free.
Checked by AVG anti-virus system (http://www.grisoft.com).
Version: 6.0.781 / Virus Database: 527 - Release Date: 10/21/04

From: julian.rickards@ndm.gov.on.ca
Date: Fri, Oct 22 2004 6:48AM
Subject: Re: Include default text?
← Previous message | Next message →


So, can I legitimately use Bobby's AAA icon even though I get that one
error??


At a recent TOEvolt.org conference, Joe Clark stated that it is virtually
impossible to meet Priority AAA because so many things may be interpretted
differently. The &quot;Until user agents&quot; clauses may apply to current software
but it may not with older software so one could argue that Browser X
(created in 1992) is one of those user agents that needs checkpoint 10.4 so
by not complying with it, you cannot claim AAA.

I look forward to WCAG 2.0 for these reasons including scoping whereby you
can specify either what page or pages do not comply with one level or
another or a particular checkpoint or that the site was prepared for
browsers x, y, and z.

-----------------------------------------------
Julian Rickards
A/Digital Publications Distribution Coordinator
Publication Services Section,
Ministry of Northern Development and Mines,
Vox: 705-670-5608 / Fax: 705-670-5960

From: Philip Kiff
Date: Fri, Oct 22 2004 8:26AM
Subject: Re: Re[2]: Include default text?
← Previous message | Next message →

Someone wrote:
> WAI or W3C icons are a lot about showing off, they don't
> fulfil any real purpose.

and Patrick wrote:
> If at all necessary, I wouldn't be adverse to finding such
> badges on a separate accessibility statement page, but not
> plastered on the front page of a site (except for the
> "fizzy good feel nice" effect it gives the developers and/or
> site owners)

I've not heard these arguments against putting accessibility icons on home
pages before. I guess there is a good point there that the accessibility
icons (be they the W3C icons, or Bobby, or whatever) are not generally
useful for many users who have a disability - for one thing, they are
unreliable indicators of whether a site is actually accessible. And perhaps
I am personally a bit guilty of putting icons on pages to "show off" or for
the "fizzy good feel nice" effect that it gives me, sometimes ;-) . But I
would argue that what Glenda and Matt suggest about the purpose of
accessibility icons is much more relevant:

Glenda wrote:
> Perhaps its for the average AB [able-bodied] user to raise
> awareness about Web accessibility.

and Matt wrote:
> Of course, it also promotes accessibility and standards in
> general...when someone sees it for the first time it may
> turn them on to the whole movement!

People on this list may know all about accessibility and the difference
between the various icons, but for many, many webmasters and CEOs and
Marketing and Communications managers, web accessibility is still something
mysterious, misunderstood, or unknown. In this context, the purpose of
accessibility icons can be twofold:
- to symbolize the commitment of a web site, or of an organization, to
accessibility issues, and web accessibility in particular
- to raise awareness about "web accessibility" as an issue for the general
population, including web designers and managers

The same argument would hold true for why one might want to use an icon
which said "Valid CSS" or "Valid XHTML". I don't think that these icons
serve a practical function for a user. Rather, they are a part of a
marketing (read: "disability awareness") strategy which supports either the
promotion of the organization attached to the website that displays the icon
("Hey look at us we meet this accessibility standard!"), or the promotion of
the principles attached to the icon ("Hey look at this, did you know there
was a web accessibility standard?").

In this context, I have in the past argued that it was better to use the W3C
icons as opposed to the Bobby icons, since the W3C icons represent a
standard which is open and international (albeit flawed), instead of one
which depends on proprietary software to evaluate.

Phil.

*****************************************
Philip Kiff
Networking &amp; Information Consultant
New Brunswick Easter Seal March of Dimes

From: John Middleton
Date: Fri, Oct 22 2004 1:10PM
Subject: Re: Include default text?
← Previous message | Next message →

Alva's OutSpoken for the Mac has been discontinued and is not
available for Mac OS X as I understand.


Apple has since created there own
Lucida GrandeUniversal
Access tool.


Here's some old info:


From the apple site

(http://www.apple.com/accessibility/spokeninterface/)


Apple is working to enhance the accessibility of its own applications

including the Finder, Mail, Safari, TextEdit, iChatAV, Calculator, and

more.


We'll have to wait and see how well.


Regards,

John Middleton

Web Administrator

National Center for the Dissemination of Disability Research




On Oct 21, 2004, at 6:35 PM, steven.faulkner wrote:





It appears that as of september 2003 some assitive tech (Ouspoken:
screen

reader for MAC) still has issues with empty form fields.

Refer to:

http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/w3c-wai-ig/2003JulSep/0422.html


with regards


Steven Faulkner

Web Accessibility Consultant

National Information &amp; Library Service (NILS)

454 Glenferrie Road

Kooyong Victoria 3144

Phone: (613) 9864 9281

Fax: (613) 9864 9210

Email: = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED =


National Information Library Service

A subsidiary of RBS.RVIB.VAF Ltd.



---

Alva's OutSpoken for the Mac has been discontinued and is not available
for Mac OS X as I understand.

Apple has since created there own Universal Access tool.

Here's some old info:

From the apple site
(http://www.apple.com/accessibility/spokeninterface/)

Apple is working to enhance the accessibility of its own applications
including the Finder, Mail, Safari, TextEdit, iChatAV, Calculator, and
more.

We'll have to wait and see how well.

Regards,
John Middleton
Web Administrator
National Center for the Dissemination of Disability Research



On Oct 21, 2004, at 6:35 PM, steven.faulkner wrote:

>
>
> It appears that as of september 2003 some assitive tech (Ouspoken:
> screen
> reader for MAC) still has issues with empty form fields.
> Refer to:
> http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/w3c-wai-ig/2003JulSep/0422.html
>
> with regards
>
> Steven Faulkner
> Web Accessibility Consultant
> National Information &amp; Library Service (NILS)
> 454 Glenferrie Road
> Kooyong Victoria 3144
> Phone: (613) 9864 9281
> Fax: (613) 9864 9210
> Email: = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED =
>
> National Information Library Service
> A subsidiary of RBS.RVIB.VAF Ltd.

From: Jukka K. Korpela
Date: Sat, Oct 23 2004 1:44AM
Subject: Re: Re[2]: Include default text?
← Previous message | Next message →

On Thu, 21 Oct 2004, glenda wrote:

> I can see your point about the accessibility icons. But isn't it somewhat
> similar to establishments putting the wheelchair sticker on the front door?

No. If you put a wheelchair sticker on the front door without being
wheelchair-accessible, you get sued. And the stickers have actual
information value to users.

Moreover, a wheelchair symbol is simple and widely understood.
If people wanted to say something similar, they would use statements
like "This is an accessible site", not cryptic icons. But such a statement
would say very little,

> As a wheelchair user, it indicates to me that place MAY be more
> wheelchair-friendly than the place next door.

Wheelchair-accessibility is a relatively simple concept. Web accessibility
is a collection of dozens of issues, some of which are covered, in some
way, in the WAI guidelines document. It would be of little practical value
to claim accessibility, since it is impossible to be accessible in all
ways (and the goals are partly contradictory, though we have usually
refrained from saying this).

What _might_ be useful is some kind of metainformation that claims some
specific kind(s) of accessibility. Such as accessibility to the blind,
verified by some objective criteria _and_ testing in real life by e.g.
organizations for the blind (since objective criteria cannot ever capture
all aspects that matter). Or accessibility that results from using
simplified language, as verified by experts in the field and preferably
by actual tests by people who need such language.

But that would best be achieved via meta data in tags or HTTP
headers, so that it gets presented to the user only if the user has
specifically asked for it (e.g. by using a browser that does so by
default), since for most users, such claims are irrelevant. But I don't
think that even this idea is practically feasible. There would be far too
few sites to surf if you restricted your surfing to sites that can
_honestly_ claim specific kinds of accessibility.

--
Jukka "Yucca" Korpela, http://www.cs.tut.fi/~jkorpela/

From: Jukka K. Korpela
Date: Sat, Oct 23 2004 1:44AM
Subject: Re: Include default text?
← Previous message | Next message →

On Fri, 22 Oct 2004, steven.faulkner wrote:

> If want to include default place holders, you can use JavaScript to clear a
> field of its default text on focus.

A pointless "fix" to a problem that should not be created.

What about the users who get confused by sudden disappearance of text?
Being slow, the user did not quite notice, or understand, the text that
was there. Now it vanished and there is no obvious way to get it back to
see whether it was important.

--
Jukka "Yucca" Korpela, http://www.cs.tut.fi/~jkorpela/

From: Jukka K. Korpela
Date: Sat, Oct 23 2004 3:37PM
Subject: Re: Re[2]: Include default text?
← Previous message | Next message →

On Thu, 21 Oct 2004, glenda wrote:

> Perhaps the icon isn't for
> the blind visitor using the screen reader.

Actually few people have even suggested that - rather symptomatically.

> Perhaps its for the average AB
> user to raise awareness about Web accessibility.

Raising awareness with cryptic signs isn't really the accessible way.
And not really the real motive; the real motive is showing off.
That's human. But we're supposed to do something about such things
in order to help people with disabilities.

"WCAG 1.0" is absolute gibberish to the vast majority of people,
so it surely cannot be an accessible way of conveying a message,
still less to "raise awareness".

--
Jukka "Yucca" Korpela, http://www.cs.tut.fi/~jkorpela/

From: Jukka K. Korpela
Date: Sat, Oct 23 2004 3:54PM
Subject: Re: Re[2]: Include default text?
← Previous message | Next message →

On Fri, 22 Oct 2004, chnnb wrote:

> I've not heard these arguments against putting accessibility icons on home
> pages before.

Then I think I need to refer to the treatise
http://www.cs.tut.fi/~jkorpela/html/validation.html#icon
which explains why they, as well HTML validity and CSS "validity" icons
are much worse than useless.

There I explain, regarding the accessibility icons specifically,
that they are practically always _false claims_, too.

Consider this checkpoint alone:
"14.1 Use the clearest and simplest language appropriate for a site's
content. [Priority 1]"

Are you sure that your page uses the _clearest and simplest_
language appropriate for your site's content? It's not just about being
clear and simple (which are hard things anyway). It's about clearest and
simplest, i.e. more clear and simple than any imaginable or non-imaginable
alternative. If you think you've achieved that, then you have failed to
understand to issue. If you don't, you must not claim to comply with WCAG
1.0 at _any_ level. (It's a priority 1 requirement, remember.)

> People on this list may know all about accessibility and the difference
> between the various icons, but for many, many webmasters and CEOs and
> Marketing and Communications managers, web accessibility is still something
> mysterious, misunderstood, or unknown.

And mysterious and misunderstood icons add to the confusion. So does the
general confusion between accessibility, WCAG 1.0 conformance, and passing
some tests (like Bobby). Three different things. If you equate any two of
them, you have missed something very fundamental in accessibility.
The bosses run into such mistakes on their own, and as pushed by other
people; we don't need give our contribution to that.

> - - or the promotion of
> the principles attached to the icon ("Hey look at this, did you know there
> was a web accessibility standard?").

Well, that principle is yet another false impression promoted by the
icons. There is no web accessibility standard, and even as a loose
recommendation, WCAG 1.0 is partly outdated - and sadly enough, instead
of updating it on a regular basis, the WAI people seem to keep themselves
busy in an attempt to create a more abstract and incompatible
recommendation, in an apparently very long-term activity.

--
Jukka "Yucca" Korpela, http://www.cs.tut.fi/~jkorpela/

From: Glenda
Date: Sat, Oct 23 2004 4:27PM
Subject: Re: Re[2]: Include default text?
← Previous message | Next message →

Jukka, I love how you are so positive and supportive! No offense intended.

This discussion on the use of icons and the one on default text begs the
question: if "we" can't come to a consensus, how can we expect people "out
there" to understand and accept Web accessibility.

I'm still no further ahead on my initial question. Some screen readers work
fine without default text, older technology may not. Javascript is one
potential work around, but that depends on whether its enabled. But using
Javascript may confuse slow readers as the text may disappear before they
read it. Yet including default text may confuse new and inexperienced
users.

What are designers suppose to do? How can aware designers meet so many
conflicting needs? What am I missing?

Cheers,
Glenda

-----Original Message-----
From: jkorpela [mailto: = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = ]
Sent: Saturday, October 23, 2004 2:33 PM
To: WebAIM Discussion List
Subject: Re: [WebAIM] Re[2]: Include default text?



On Thu, 21 Oct 2004, glenda wrote:

> Perhaps the icon isn't for
> the blind visitor using the screen reader.

Actually few people have even suggested that - rather symptomatically.

> Perhaps its for the average AB
> user to raise awareness about Web accessibility.

Raising awareness with cryptic signs isn't really the accessible way.
And not really the real motive; the real motive is showing off.
That's human. But we're supposed to do something about such things
in order to help people with disabilities.

"WCAG 1.0" is absolute gibberish to the vast majority of people,
so it surely cannot be an accessible way of conveying a message,
still less to "raise awareness".

--
Jukka "Yucca" Korpela, http://www.cs.tut.fi/~jkorpela/

----
To subscribe or unsubscribe, visit http://www.webaim.org/discussion/

---
Incoming mail is certified Virus Free.
Checked by AVG anti-virus system (http://www.grisoft.com).
Version: 6.0.781 / Virus Database: 527 - Release Date: 10/21/04

---
Outgoing mail is certified Virus Free.
Checked by AVG anti-virus system (http://www.grisoft.com).
Version: 6.0.781 / Virus Database: 527 - Release Date: 10/21/04

From: Jukka K. Korpela
Date: Sat, Oct 23 2004 5:17PM
Subject: Re: Re[2]: Include default text?
← Previous message | Next message →

On Sat, 23 Oct 2004, glenda wrote:

> Jukka, I love how you are so positive and supportive! No offense intended.

No offence taken. I see not reason to be positive and supportive towards
widespread bogosity.

> This discussion on the use of icons and the one on default text begs the
> question: if "we" can't come to a consensus, how can we expect people "out
> there" to understand and accept Web accessibility.

Some of them might be smarter than we are. People who advocate
accessibility might have lost the big picture and idea. It's so common to
get focused on tools and measures and guidelines instead of the original
purpose.

> I'm still no further ahead on my initial question.

Really? It's very simple. Don't use default text, except when you can set
a meaningful initial (default) value for a text field.

> Some screen readers work
> fine without default text, older technology may not.

That "older technology" is mostly a myth, especially by now, and we surely
shouldn't make pages less accessible to the vast majority just to cope
with errors in ancient technology. Surely any user agent that cannot deal
with initially empty fields is impossible to use for surfing (since
most text fields on Web pages are initially empty) and surely
there are better alternatives. Even if we could serve them with some
tricks without disturbing the users of all other browsers, we shouldn't do
that. It's a disservice to try to help people to keep using
seriously outdated software that could and should have been replaced long ago.

--
Jukka "Yucca" Korpela, http://www.cs.tut.fi/~jkorpela/

From: Andrew Arch
Date: Sun, Oct 24 2004 5:53AM
Subject: Re: Re[2]: Include default text?
← Previous message | Next message →

Like Jukka, we consider that Checkpoint 10.4 is now deprecated (it does
start off with "until user agents ..."). Jukka gives good reasons for
ignoring it nowadays.

Andrew

-----Original Message-----
From: jkorpela [mailto: = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = ]
Sent: Sunday, 24 October 2004 9:11 AM
To: WebAIM Discussion List
Subject: Re: [WebAIM] Re[2]: Include default text?

On Sat, 23 Oct 2004, glenda wrote:



> I'm still no further ahead on my initial question.

Really? It's very simple. Don't use default text, except when you can set
a meaningful initial (default) value for a text field.

> Some screen readers work
> fine without default text, older technology may not.

That "older technology" is mostly a myth, especially by now, and we surely
shouldn't make pages less accessible to the vast majority just to cope
with errors in ancient technology. Surely any user agent that cannot deal
with initially empty fields is impossible to use for surfing (since
most text fields on Web pages are initially empty) and surely
there are better alternatives. Even if we could serve them with some
tricks without disturbing the users of all other browsers, we shouldn't do
that. It's a disservice to try to help people to keep using
seriously outdated software that could and should have been replaced long
ago.

--
Jukka "Yucca" Korpela, http://www.cs.tut.fi/~jkorpela/

----
To subscribe or unsubscribe, visit http://www.webaim.org/discussion/

From: Glenda
Date: Sun, Oct 24 2004 4:42PM
Subject: Re: Re[2]: Include default text?
← Previous message | Next message →

Thanks for teaching me a new word!

-----Original Message-----
From: jkorpela [mailto: = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = ]
Sent: Saturday, October 23, 2004 4:11 PM
To: WebAIM Discussion List
Subject: Re: [WebAIM] Re[2]: Include default text?



On Sat, 23 Oct 2004, glenda wrote:

> Jukka, I love how you are so positive and supportive! No offense
intended.

No offence taken. I see not reason to be positive and supportive towards
widespread bogosity.


---
Outgoing mail is certified Virus Free.
Checked by AVG anti-virus system (http://www.grisoft.com).
Version: 6.0.782 / Virus Database: 528 - Release Date: 10/22/04

From: Steven Faulkner
Date: Sun, Oct 24 2004 5:30PM
Subject: Re: Include default text?
← Previous message | Next message →


On Saturday, 23 October 2004 jkorpela wrote:

>A pointless "fix" to a problem that should not be created.

Out in the real world, web developers and designers want to create lots of
things
that may seem "pointless" to others, some of which decrease accessibility.
The method i suggested is one way of minimising the problems I have
observed, when screen reader users have encountered default texts.

with regards

Steven Faulkner
Web Accessibility Consultant
National Information &amp; Library Service (NILS)
454 Glenferrie Road
Kooyong Victoria 3144
Phone: (613) 9864 9281
Fax: (613) 9864 9210
Email: = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED =

National Information Library Service
A subsidiary of RBS.RVIB.VAF Ltd.



-----Original Message-----
From: jkorpela [mailto: = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = ]
Sent: Saturday, 23 October 2004 5:40 PM
To: WebAIM Discussion List
Subject: Re: [WebAIM] Include default text?



On Fri, 22 Oct 2004, steven.faulkner wrote:

> If want to include default place holders, you can use JavaScript to clear
a
> field of its default text on focus.

A pointless "fix" to a problem that should not be created.

What about the users who get confused by sudden disappearance of text?
Being slow, the user did not quite notice, or understand, the text that
was there. Now it vanished and there is no obvious way to get it back to
see whether it was important.

--
Jukka "Yucca" Korpela, http://www.cs.tut.fi/~jkorpela/

----
To subscribe or unsubscribe, visit http://www.webaim.org/discussion/

From: Hall, Kevin (K.M.)
Date: Mon, Oct 25 2004 8:12AM
Subject: Re: Re[2]: Include default text?
← Previous message | No next message

> 2) How do people feel about using the to point to
> an accessibility page?

I rather like this use of link. Accessibility statements aren't just for saying what a fine job you did on the site, they can explain what you have done, how users can take advantage of accessibility features you have included on the site, and potential problems areas for users with certain disabilities, along with instructions for handling any problems that are encountered. While this may not be too well supported it is great in conjunction with a normal hyperlink to the accessibility statement.

Regards,
-Kevin Hall