W3C logo Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI) logo > EOWG > Minutes > June 22 2001

Education & Outreach Working Group Meeting
Face to Face, 22 June 2001, Amsterdam



Item 1. Welcome by Judy Brewer

JB: welcome to a special focus meeting dedicated to an

exchange of information between people in Europe who have

been promoting and implementing web accessibility in Europe

Item 2: Agenda Review (JB)

9:30 - start with short intros & agenda review;

10:20 - update on current state of WCAG development

[JB: WCAG1 still stable and referenceable, and will be for some time to come]

10:45 - BREAK (15 minutes)

11:00 - roundtable on promoting WCAG -- advantages and

disadvantages of strategies; harmonization of standards;

need for localized translations; most effective means of

operating/getting the job accomplished with maximum

quality control

12:30 - LUNCH (1 hour)

1:30 - how to harmonize with international guidelines; how

to get help in addressing accessibility problems

3:00 - BREAK (15 minutes)

3:15 - networking possibilities; brainstorming on next

steps -- further exchanges of information; coordination of



Item 3. Brief Introductions

JB: purpose of this face-to-face meeting is to exchange

information; my name is Judy Brewer, and I'm head of the WAI

Domain within the W3C

Jaap van Lievenwald (JVL): web accessibility for Dutch Federation

of Partially Sighted and Blind People; participating in a large

project in the Netherlands; hope to learn from what others are

doing to provide assistance/guidance to webmasters, as well as

what steps are being taken to coordinate efforts at attaining

accessiblity within individual countries and across the 15 member


Sylvie Duchateau (SD): from Paris; working on the WAI-DA project

-- goal is to develop ways to disseminate WCAG further throughout

Europe; [scribe's note: WAI-DA is an acronym which expands to

"Web Accessibility Initiative - Design for All"]

Julie Howell (JH) - RNIB public policy officer -- working

with government, commerce, and banking entities to ensure

accessibility of their online presence

Donna Smiley (RNIB) - tell the people JH work with how to

make their sites accessible

Jorges Fernandes, JF (accesso) - belong to an access unit

of the Portugese Ministry of Technology named ""

responsible for national initiative for citizens with special needs in


Emmanuelle Gutiérrez y Restrepo (EGR) - from Spain; SIDAR


Haarold Jorgenson - Delta Center in Oslo Norway;

accessibility and participation for all; working in a group

trying to get recommendations into Norway's plans

Christen Skiule (CS) - web accessibility project in Norway;

launched web site yesterday; Norway in general has done very

little as of yet on this topic, and this site, and my

participation in this forum, are but the beginning of

Norway's efforts to ensure the accessibility of its web

content and to promote accessibility in general, Norway-

based sites

Wendy Chisholm (WC) - staff contact and editor for WCAG

Ima Placencia - Eureopean Commission, Information Society Technologies Programme, eAccessibility issues; also working

with WAI-DA project; here to meet other WG members

Brigitte [???]: from Germany; involved in usability testing;

consulting; hope to find a lot of information from

participation in this forum

Helle Bjarnø (HB) - Vision Impairment Center in Denmark;

hope to do a lot of networking and get more people in Europe

involved more directly in the Education and Outreach working

group; WCAG1 has been edited and translated into Danish;

WCAG2, will be translated into Danish in toto, complete and


Kevin Cary: director of Humanity, a non-profit/NGO; vice-

chairman of RNIB; aim: to discover if there is an effective

structure and strategy for eEurope; as for the answer to

Judy's twice-asked question, "why are you carrying a book on

constitutional law", time and experience have combined to

convince me that, if accessibility is to be achieved and

maintained, the idea of information and access for all needs

to be based on firm legal foundations;

Stephane Glasnik - my aim in attending is to assist in the

promotion of WCAG in Europe

Henk Snetselaar (HS) - from Bartiméus; teacher at school for


Eric Velleman (EV) - from Bartiméus; teach blind and

partially sighted individuals; working with Jacko

Paul Bohman (PB) - from Utah State University; manage Web

Accessibility In Mind, or "WebAIM", for short, which

provides information on how universities can ensure that

their web sites are accessible [URI: http://www.webaim.org/]

Lee ??? : eWorks project manager; like to achieve a

first-hand opinion from all here so that accessible sites

are truly accessible

Jacko van Dijk - one of 4 "ambassadors" from the Netherlands

Ministry of Health working on a project called, in Dutch,

DrempelsWeg, which translates as "Barriers Away"; it is an

initiative of the government of the Netherlands to make a

more accessible internet;

David Cirrus: project manager for [???] project

Ivor Ambrose: (Brussels) Living Research and Development;

working at European Commission for the last 3 years; worked

on paper on why European governments should make their sites


Gregory Rosmaita (GJR): Interest Group member-at-large, WAI Co-ordination

Group; active member of Protocols & Formats, Authoring

Tools, User Agent, Web Content Guidelines, and Education &

Outreach groups; scribe for today, interested in the

European perspective and in observing the dynamics that

emerge from this meeting

Katie Harritos-Shea (KHS) - tasked with implementing

guidelines in US for compliance with Section 508; interested

in others' experience

Charles McCathieNevile (CMN) - staff contact for authoring

tools; looking for at least 3 authoring tool developers who

will comply with ATAG; interested in discerning if there are

any common features of the accessibility effort in Europe

with those in other parts of the world, in particular,


Jan van Eyk - involved in Jacko's project

Ivan Herman - head of worldwide offices for W3C

Item 4. Background: The W3C, the WAI, & European Initiatives

JB: for some this may the first time they have participated

in a W3C activity; wanted to talk about what W3C is, and why

the WAI exists and what it does

JB: W3C is an industry consortium that develops technical

standards for the web; tries to build consensus on technical

specs in vendor neutral space; as an industry consortium, it

is somewhat unusual that it hosts an accessibility project

inside of it--one of the 4 major work areas in W3C; examine

from beginning of design process; W3C going for 5

1. ensure the accessibility of technical specifications

(i.e. core web technologies) being produced by the W3C

(role of member-confidential Protocols & Formats WG)

2. develop guidelines; WCAG, ATAG (ensure that authoring

tools produce accessible content and are accessible to

persons with disabilities themselves, and UAAG (exposition

of content and required functionality for user agents/


3. evaluation and repair

4. education and outreach

5. coordination with other consortia and R&D [research &

development] projects

JB: QuickTips cards came out of the Education & Outreach

(EO) Working Group -- currently, translations of the

QuickTips cards are available in 10 or 12 languages,

although they need to be cleaned up, restandardized, and

republished; other deliverables/projects of the EO WG are:

the WAI Flyer; an Online Curriculum; training materials;

documents such as: "How Persons With Disabilities Use the

Web"; the business case for accessibility; EO also fosters a

weekly exchange of information (Outreach Updates) at he

beginning of each teleconference, which is held from 8:30 to

10:00 a.m. U.S. Eastern time, which translates to 1230 to

1400h UTC, which is a manageable time for European


JB: as an industry consortium, there is some very strict

process that must be followed, so please note that, unlike a

typical W3C face2face meeting, this is a non-decision making

meeting -- the scope of our discussion today lays outside of

EO's scope, but given the eEurope activities unfolding, I

thought it important to convene such a meeting to explain to

those involved in eEurope and nationalized accessibility

initiatives what role the WAI plays in drafting and

promulgating accessibility guidelines, techniques,

curricula, background materials, and tools and to explore

the intersection of W3C/WAI with European accessibility

initiatives, as well as provide a forum for networking

between those involved in web accessibility initiatives in

Europe; and, having stated that caveat, I'd like to ask

Sylvie Duchateau to briefly describe the WAI-DA project

SD: WAI-DA (Web Accessibility and Design for All) financed

by EU; goal: disseminate WAI guidelines in Europe; in charge

of setting up a list of contact people who could disseminate

WAI info in their own land; way to have WAI to send an info

letter regularly to such contacts to circulate WAI info

through NGOs, governments, etc.; in Europe, there are many

different languages, so need to translate documents into

many languages; internationalization issues with WAI

documents (comprehensibility/translatability); gallery of

accessible web sites from different countries (non-

English)to show how could be made accessible; web site

review in each country;

JB: if you have access to an electronic mailing list that

updates on WAI info and support materials for WCAG, please

speak with Sylvie during a break to give her either your

name or the name of someone in your organization to be

subscribed to the list; doing something similar with web


Ivan: W3C team spread over 3 continents: Sophia, Cambridge,

and Keio; W3C offices hosted in diff institutions and

universities whose role is to be an outreach institution for

local community; focal point for local members and community

in general; generate local newsletters, tutorials in

country's language; beginning to be more active in promoting

accessibility; help translations into local languages; at

the moment have offices in: Sweden, UK, Germany, Greece,

Netherlands, and Italy; links to offices and staff contacts

can be found via www.w3.org -- trying to set up office in

Spain; have larger EU funding to get more offices up --

maybe Finland, Central and European Union; other offices

Australia, Hong Kong, Morocco, and Israel

JB: a lot of background info -- want to stop for questions

Ivor: how far have you got with the WAI-DA? the 15 member


SD: no--first goal is to have the 15 member states then the

EU candidate states

Ivor: include other Central European countries as well?

JB: fine if we do, but trying to get direct outreach to

disability organizations, governments, policy setters, web

designers in the 15 member states;

JVL: is it good or bad to have a European accessibility logo

-- could we discuss that at some point? do we need a pan-

European logo or nationalized logos?

Ivan: terminology always a problem in translation -- is

there one term that is truly universal?

JB: issue of translation is very important one for us to

discuss today; heard from several countries that it is a

problem using the W3C translation policy -- there exist

translations of many technical recommendations and notes

issued by the W3C in many languages, but the translations

are done primarily by volunteers; and, while the W3C has a

stable, albeit small, group of volunteer translators, a

translators' mailing list, a translators' style guide, etc.,

W3C doesn't, however, recognize any translation as

normative; only the American English version is normative;

in addition, W3C doesn't have a system in place to recognize

an official translation of a document, which is an issue we

need to reopen as a discussion within W3C; some terminology

is inevitably unusual -- "graceful transformation", for

example -- and I hope that the Unified WAI Glossary effort,

which is being shepherded by KHS, will help in the

identification of terms that may prove problematic or

untranslatable -- starting in English, we've taken glossary

terms and provided a "3D" definition for the terms, based on

their use in the 3 WAI Guidelines documents; the hope is

that translators start by translating the unified glossary,

so that consensus on terminology can be reached before

documents are translated and disseminated

HB: what about countries or languages where there is no W3C

office? Who is to do the translating?

Ivan: W3C Offices trying to initiate and coordinate

translation; don't have a real answer to that,

unfortunately; all discussions that I have with persons in

new offices know that one of the main priorities is

translation of accessibility guidelines; still rely on

volunteers; discussion with Spanish translator made it clear

that we need not only an "official" Spanish translation --

that is, a translation into the nation's official language,

Castilian Spanish -- but into at least Catalan and Galician,

as well

KHS: the Unified WAI Glossary project started as something

that Harvey Bingham compiled by combining the glossaries of

the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG), the

Authoring Tool Accessibility Guidelines (ATAG), and the User

Agent Accessibility Guidelines (UAAG); wanted to ensure that

terms were being used in the same manner across documents;

have since added other resources from within and without

W3C; using the wai-xtech@w3.org emailing list to discuss

issues, but I believe that what is ultimately needed is to

convene a face2face meeting in concert with translators;

right now, I'm populating a huge document and tracking all

of the issues that arise, but the content (and structure)

needs discussion and input, especially from non-native

English speakers

[scribe's note: the Unified WAI Glossary can be found at:


CMN: people who are doing translations, please send notes

stating what you are working on to the W3C translators list:

we need to track who is doing a translation of what, and, if

possible, encourage collaboration, especially as the

documents grow in length; there will be one glossary for all

WAI guidelines -- that is the goal, that each GL uses common

terms and not "for the purposes of this document..." type


[scribe's note: the W3C translators' list address is: <w3c-

translators@w3.org> -- a public archive can be found at:


KHS: several groups have talked about pointing to our

glossary from outside the W3C

JB: thank you, all; I'm now going to use the projector to

show -- and describe -- how to get to resources that occupy

WAI web space

1. W3C Home: note that "Accessibility" is the first

navigational link!

URI: http://www.w3.org/

2. Translations Coordination page (linked from W3C home)

URI: http://www.w3.org/Consortium/Translation/

3. WAI Home: (all 9 WAI Working and Interest Groups are

linked-to from this page)

URI: http://www.w3.org/WAI/

3A. WAI Site Map

URI: http://www.w3.org/WAI/sitemap.html

3B. About WAI

URI: http://www.w3.org/WAI/about.html

3C. WAI Participation

URI: http://www.w3.org/WAI/participation.html

4. WAI Resources -- links to: introductions to web

accessibility; QuickTips (contents of cards, ordering

information, available translations); Frequently Asked

Questions (WAI FAQs); guidelines; checklists; techniques;

training materials; evaluation; logos (explanations and

usage policies); translations; information on alternative

browsing methods; listing of events at which web

accessibility need to be/should be addressed; policies on

web accessibility; other resources

URI: http://www.w3.org/WAI/Resources

5. Cross-Group Coordination

URI: http://www.w3.org/WAI/GL/#coordinating

6. Unified Glossary

URI: http://www.w3.org/WAI/GL/Glossary/

JB: WC, please add way to get to wai-xtech archives/information

under Cross-Group Cooperation heading on GL home page

// ACTION WC: add link to wai-xtech archives under Cross-

Group Cooperation heading on GL home page //

Jorge: what about translations of Bobby?

JB: Bobby is an evaluation tool produced by CAST (Center for

Applied Special Technology) located in Massachusetts; while

CAST participates actively in the Evaluation & Repair Tools

WG, the W3C/WAI doesn't control Bobby's development; CAST is

working on several different translations of Bobby, some in

partnership with individual countries; either I or WC can

follow up your question off-line

Jorge: I've contacted Chuck Hitchcock, but he told me that

the problem is that there is some connection between WCAG

translation and Bobby translation;

JB: right now there's no direct connection -- would be a

good thing to explore, but not exclusive to Bobby; have to

look at all products and services; is that something that

you can track?

CMN: best thing to do is to contact CAST with info about

local translation of WCAG and ask if your organization or a

governmental agency in your country which has agreed to do

so can assist them in the translation process

Erik: CAST has made a tool in which it is possible to

display the English version on one side and the translated

version on the other, which leads to the rendering of a

localized version of Bobby; if make a localized version of

Bobby, it is important to use a translation of WCAG as the

baseline -- and a good translation, at that!

5. Topic: Status of WCAG 2.0

JB: because WC is leaving, want to jump ahead in the agenda

-- WCAG 1.0 were worked upon for 2 and a half years within

the W3C; published as a Technical Recommendation (final

standards stage at W3C); stable, referenceable; know that

there are problems with WCAG -- WC will address what we are

trying to do with WCAG2 and how you can provide feedback

WC: 2 years of feedback used to create requirements for

WCAG2 so that it wouldn't have the same translation issues

as WCAG1; in June 2000, released our requirements document,

which contains 6 points

1. ensure that can be applied across technologies,

including new ones and XML-based languages

2. make it clearer to determine when you have satisfied a

checkpoint and that they are easy to test;

3. usability - better, more flexible organization

4. write to a more diverse audience - WCAG1 directed at a

very technical audience; realize that a major portion of

audience are non-technical

5. clearly identify who benefits from what

6. backwards compatibility with WCAG1 - don't want to

break WCAG1

[scribe's note: the WCAG2 requirements document can be

found at:


WC: first public working draft published 25 January 2001 --

received comments from WAI-IG; planning another public draft

at the end of August preceding September WCAG face2face

[scribe's note - the resources referenced by WC above

can be found at:

First Public Draft of WCAG2:


Comments on 25 January 2001 Draft:


Latest Working Draft (29 March 2001):


JB: process note: WG goes through many working drafts, many

internal to working group, some on TR space to increase

visibility; Last Call working draft put out for public

comments; moves to Candidate Recommendation, which could

take several months, then Proposed Recommendation, and then

release after review by W3C members and the director as

Technical Recommendation

WC: 13 public working drafts of WCAG1; only 1 public working

draft of WCAG2 so far

WC: modularization of WCAG1 techniques -- techniques for

HTML, CSS, and Core Techniques; redrafting HTML, CSS, and

Core techniques to see how well work with WCAG2 draft;

another face2face meeting in Australia in November, by which

time we will have published a javascript/ECMAscript, SVG,

and PDF techniques documents

WC: Unified Glossary progress report -- Harvey's original

draft was from Fall 2000; CMN and KHS began working on it in

December; working on both content and structure

6. Topic: Unified Glossary

[scribe's note: during WC's presentation, the following

resources were displayed on the projector:

1. GL Homepage

URI: http://www.w3.org/WAI/GL/

2. GL WG Charter:

URI: http://www.w3.org/WAI/GL/new-charter-2000.html

3. Requirements for WCAG2

URI: http://www.w3.org/WAI/GL/wcag20-requirements

4. Issue Tracking for WCAG2

URI: http://www.w3.org/WAI/GL/wcag20-issues.html]

WC: right now, the compilation and distillation of a unified

Glossary for all WAI guidelines document presents a major

opportunity for review by potential translators, as well as

anyone who will be performing reviews, setting policies, and/or

making recommendations based on the WAI guidelines

JB: any time advance a working draft through a new stage, it

is announced to the WAI-IG list; will also be announcing it

on the WAI-DA list

WC: unfortunately meeting time for GL WG telecons isn't very

good for European participation [scribe's note: the GL WG meets

on Thursdays, from 4-5:30pm U.S. Eastern Time/2000-2130h UTC]

JB: if there are people here interested in joining the GL

WG, please speak to WC -- EO added an extra meeting time once or

twice a month for those members in the Far East and Australia

which has helped EO get additional feedback, so GL WG may want

to consider something similar

WC: still maintaining 1.0 and trying to process questions

arising from it and answer them in WCAG2

JB: we're approaching the break, which will be followed by an

hour-and-a-half roundtable discussion, during which the following

topics will be addressed:

* what are the advantages and disadvantages of the different

approaches described?

* which approaches are most effective?

* should there be different approaches to evaluating the

accessibility of different types of web sites? should reviews

of commercial sites be the same as of governmental sites?

* educational campaigns

// 15 MINUTE BREAK 10:50 to 11:05 //


5A) Presentation: The eEurope Initiative (Ivor Ambrose)

Stepping back a month or 2 into my role as an expert in

European Commission (EC) -- first, let me explain that the

EC can act in various ways to promote policies on pan-

European policy; able to encourage member states to

harmonize activities at the policy level; EC became

convinced that it was important to coordinate activity

around accessibility of public web sites; what's a public

web site? Web sites that have been established by public

administrations -- government web sites, local government

web sites, or sites that offer services from a public

agency; trying to achieve consensus among members states on

how to make public web sites accessible; the document that

EC produced is a "communication" a recommendation" -- the

commission feels it would be appropriate to follow certain

guidelines to make sites accessible; should fit in with pre-

existing standards -- in particular the WAI guidelines;

Let me take one step backwards: -- eEurope started at the

end of 1999; encourage the adoption of digital technologies

to get Europe online; globally speaking Europe is behind the

U.S. (ahead with mobile!); EC points to increase access to

internet; improve security of internet in Europe; education;

increase the use of internet technologies for businesses --

became the eEurope action plan -- participation for all,

which targets 5 areas: legislation, standards, centers of

excellence, etc.; action plan for access to public web sites

EC recommending that the communication be adopted by each

member state -- took examples of what is happening around

Europe to ascertain how could be implemented; overall

recommendation is that member states and European

institutions themselves should adopt WCAG1 with minimum

compliance at Level-A (Single-A)

Simply put, we've put the ball in front of the goalposts,

and it's up to individual governments to kick it in

What needs to be done: training, awareness raising, working

with disabled organizations to ensure that accessibility

aims are actually being me in each country; implementation

up to member states -- have already signed up for this;

JB: web context of Ivor's comments; if we were to have a

starting place the WAI Resource page, there is a resource

panel that has policy links on it -- link to things we are

aware of in different countries - governmental policies on

this page; also a separate section of WAI site that links to

references where would like to link to more projects working

for accessibility

LB: eEurope page being put up by commission -- describes

what is being done; eEurope portal (will come online later

in 2001) will collate these sites and link to IT themed


[Scribe's note: the URI of the eEurope site is:

http://europa.eu.int/information_society/eeurope/index_en.htm ]

Haarold: benchmarking for all of eEurope - could they put up

another benchmark concerning accessibility of web sites

Ivor: to assist implementation of accessibility targets,

there is a WG called the eEurope Accessibility Group --

experts that take information back to member states and

investigating ways to promote close links; need close link

with eEurope WG and WAI; only one target right now -- how

many countries have adopted this communication policy

regarding accessibility; in theory all 14 states have

adopted it, but need to analyze the benchmarking; one

benchmark being counted is how many public access points are

there per 100 people; one thing that hasn't been built in is

"are these accessible public points?" -- can you get into

the building? Can you plug in adaptive technology? --

experts come from IT ministries in EU -- list is public

KC: how many of the experts are disabled?

Ivor: there are 2 blind people in the group, but that's only

off the top of my head -- 35 people in the WG; at last

meeting it was discussed whether or not list of experts

could be publicly released and the conclusion was yes, but I

don't know if the info has been made public yet or where

JB: sat in on 2 meetings of expert group -- contact points

vary by country; in one or 2 countries there has been

difficulty getting experts from government

Ivor: EDF (European Disability Forum) now taking part in

these WG meetings and can take an active part

Jorge: participant in last meeting of expert WG and have

read communication carefully and sent concerns about it to

the EC; think communication isn't strong enough to improve

accessibility in member states; in Portugal have already

done a lot of work but not a lot of results; some things in

communication that say "should be done" should be musts --

Level-A is mandatory in Portugal; read some examples in

communication about work of EC -- give some examples about

Europa web site; put in communication base of Level-A -- not

a positive way of thinking, but mandatory; positive way of

thinking is to adopt Double-A; example I gave EC is contrast

colors is a Double-A, not Single-A rule -- can be a very

strong barrier to many people's access to a site; partially

sighted is 80 or 90 percent of visually impaired --

especially with elderly (20% of Europe's population); Level-

A must be done until end of 2001 not end of 2004 as stated

in communication; concern is that a member state that sees

the 2004 benchmark, will only try for Level-A too slowly;

access isn't design for efficiency -- the right to read or

not read

Ivor: this kind of document is the strongest instrument that

the EC can use -- it is an advisory document, not a

regulation; will be debated and may be taken to a higher

level through European Parliament to make stronger;

underlying issue why it looks weak from a Portuguese point

of view -- Portugal has anti-discrimination legislation that

includes web access (other EU members who have similarly

inclusive legislation are the UK and Ireland); when drafting

communication, we decided: first, get people on board; then

provide direction -- a range of alternatives and

mechanisms, one of which may be pan-European legislation

that precludes discrimination against persons with

disabilities, including access to web content; personally

agree that Double-A is better than Level-A, but the first

step is the biggest

WC: if you look at the Priority 1 checkpoints, there is one

that says use text and not images of text; if have used

markup to generate text using stylesheets, then user can

change the color contrast -- assumption is user control to

effect color contrast changes

Ivor: so, the question is, why doesn't EC move faster

towards these targets? Huge legacy content issue -- EC

should ensure that by 2002 that all member states make new

material complaint, but legacy content fixes will take


// WC leaves //

5B) Presentation: European Disability Forum

(Stephane Blassnig/Austria)

web site: http://www.edf-feph.org/

email contact: info@edf-feph.org

European Disability Forum (EDF) is an umbrella organization

of all disability organizations in 15 EU member states -- 18

member organizations; influence legislation of EU in any area that

concerns persons with disabilities; second issue:

disseminate new developments on European level to member

organizations that is up-to-date; working areas: public

procurement, transport, universal access, access to

information; last year main priorities were eEurope 2002

directive on access to documents; Information Society

building new web site with Funkweb, a Norwegian company

specializing in IT and accessibility, related to Norwegian

council -- should be online later this year; at the moment

building new site for EDF which will be WCAG compliant

Concerning WCAG and WAI, our main participation goal is in

the promotion of the guidelines: first to our member

organizations; second to national councils (direct partner)

put pressure on government to make site more accessible than

they probably want to

JB: workshop that I missed in which perceptions in changes

in perception of web accessibility in different countries

and comparing that with promotion -- would like to hear more

about that or if there will be a follow-up workshop

5C) Presentation: Web Accessibility in Denmark (Helle Bjarnø)

In 1997, the Center for Equal Access for People with

Disabilities in Denmark started a survey of web sites and

found that 90% of the sites it surveyed were inaccessible;

the state information office has made a set of guidelines

based on WCAG1 and extracted a set of recommendations for

Danish governmental web sites, but compliance is dependent

upon good will because there are no anti-discrimination

laws for persons with disabilities in Denmark; however, as

a result, more and more public web sites are becoming more

accessible, and, of course, we're monitoring compliance and

speaking up when necessary/appropriate; out of this initial

work came a project that focuses on eGovernment in Denmark:

all public web sites, of which there are approximately 6500

in number, will be evaluated over the next 3 years, and part

of the evaluation will be a test for accessibility--all 6500

sites will be tested against Bobby--Bobby will perform the

initial analysis (to detect the presence of ALT in IMG, for

example,) and then Bobby's questions will be manually

answered; personally, I still feel that the current standards

are too low, but it is a start, and introduces a lot of

people to an issue they didn't know about before; there is an

annual contest in Denmark for outstanding web design, and we

were able to get accessibility included as a criterion; my

organization continues to give advice and to produce papers

on accessibility; our survey of government web sites revealed

that 20% used the Danish guidelines when implementing content

Results and methodology can be found on the web at the "Bedst

På Nettet (Best on the Net in Denmark)" web site, located at:

http://bedstpaanettet.dk [Danish]

http://bedstpaanettet.dk/english.asp?page=dept&objno=706 [English]

Harald: we've tested 400 sites in Norway -- results on

http://www.norge.no [scribe's note: an English version is

available at: http://www.norge.no/english/]

JB: were the reviews published or publicized in newspapers?

HB: sent out press releases and published the report on web

site; a year after, a Danish company which does IT work for

Danish government sponsored its own review, in which it had

a blind user testing all of the sites manually--achieved much

better results than with a simple pass through Bobby

Ivor: not only looking at accessibility from technical point

of view -- issue of the usability of the site -- how easy is

it to navigate; openness of the public administration to the

general public (set up criteria for analysis); third

measure, interactivity (can you fill-in a form; if you send

a query, do you get a response) -- other avenues into the

realm of accessibility -- other criteria that public

administrations are interested in anyway

HB: accessibility has a very small place on the governments'


KC: all of this highlights a very important point: tactics in

Europe will be very different from those in the U.S. or

Australia, because in the European theater, we're dealing with

economic organization which is recommending "best practices"

and which doesn't have the power to enforce its recommendations,

whereas in the U.S. and Australia, for example, there are

clearly defined laws appertaining to the rights of persons with

disabilities, promulgated by a constitutional entity

JB: KC's point about choosing appropriate strategies is well

taken, but I'd like to focus for now on the many vibrant

initiatives coming out of European disability communities; one

issue which concerns us all is that, when a government finally

does gets mobilized, implementation of a set of rules,

recommendations, or guidelines gets contracted out to consultants

who may not be aware of or responsive to accessibility concerns,

or the full import of the changes that need to be effected gets

diluted or changed, so one issue is, how to keep the disability

slash accessiblity portion of the effort from being diluted?

Ivor: Danish situation falls inbetween the economic and

legislative model -- it is a way of assessing the

service-mindedness of public entities

Bridgette: question on testing methodology; you highlighted the

difference between the results obtained from Bobby versus an

individual analysis of a site -- what are the protocols you

used? What tools other than Bobby were used?

JB: in the interest of time, I'm going to ask you to please refer

to the URI provided by Helle, and to ask follow up questions via

the EO mailing list

5D) Presentation: RNIB's Digital Access Campaign (Julie Howell)

URI: http://rnib.org.uk/digital

JH: I am the campaigns officer for Royal National Institute for

the Blind (RNIB), which means that I'm responsible for RNIB's

Campaign for Good Web Design--our goal is to provide a basis for

the design of web sites in which accessibility concerns are

considered from the beginning and kept in mind throughout; asking

them to do it correctly and well in the first place; the Campaign's

web site [http://www.rnib.org.uk/digital] is one of the top 3 paths on

RNIB's web site; we use it to coordinate efforts

I've been doing this for about 2 years; I work with people

-- I can't stress that aspect of the campaign enough;

we take the message out to our target audiences together; one

important aspect is to get designer participation in the campaign

the Campaign for Good Web Design has 3 areas of concentration:

1. government: Modernizing Government Agenda -- how UK

government was to participate in internet; by 2005 all

government services supposed to be online; milestone plan

(May 1999) stated that by November 1999 would produce

standards; asked that one criterion be accessibility; asked

to co-author; eEnvoy Office produces the guidelines and is

supposed to promote and police them, but so far, no action;

civil servants keen to make sites accessible, but apparently not

feeling pressure or getting support from government; second

version of guidelines will be published in excess of 150

pages -- not law, but mandatory -- all government web sites

have to conform to Level-A; new eMinister being approached,

as is the eEnvoy to find out why no action; in regards the

construction of local/municipal governmental web sites, RNIB

plans on being very active in this;

2. commerce/shopping: August 2000 wrote report about

getting ecommerce site accessible -- "name 'em and shame

'em" report of 17 of UK's biggest ecommerce sites; none

passed Bobby; one thing that came out of this was work with

Tesco -- most successful online grocer in the world, they

claim, which is true at least in UK; received a lot of

complaints from blind/VI trying to use Tesco; encouraged

them to contact Tesco -- 40 did; Tesco contacted me to find

out what needed to be done; sat Tesco people down with blind

users to show them the problems -- very enlightening;

promised to make site "best of breed"; different interface

provided -- concerned that would be poorer quality of

service, but since driven from the same database, only a

different interface; accepted business case, but told use

that the work done in building http://www.tesco.com/access has

informed their work on developing for digital TV: kept blind

people involved throughout; Tesco got 150 blind/vi persons

involved in testing; Tesco joined the emailing list of the

British Computer Association of the Blind (BCAB) and continue

to talk with users; extended program to educate drivers/delivery

people on how to deal with disabled customers; aim of Tesco site

is that you can do all of your shopping within 15 minutes; been

approached by another High Street company as well.

3. banking: British Bankers' Association working with us

on guidelines for banks which will be issued in September


a fourth aspect of our campaign are awards--if you use sticks,

you also need carrots!

as for what's needed: 1) a gallery of accessible sites; 2)

icon schemes, and 3) campaign supporters' networks which bring

all the groups involved in the campaign together to discuss the


HB: online banking is being investigated in Denmark -- could

we see your methodology before it is published?

JH: yes--the methodology, and the report when it is issued will

be made available to the public; when it is, I'll let the EOWG

know by posting to the EO mailing list

KC: it should be noted, as well, that it is the Disability

Discrimination Act in the U.K. that puts the fear of God into the


JH: good point--legal underpinnings for achieving accessibility

can't be under- or over-estimated

JVL: how many people use the Tesco service?

JH: waiting to obtain statistics; accessible version of site

has a far cleaner and friendlier interface and will probably

end up being more popular than regular interface

JVL: personalization issues -- the technology that enables

personalization is often inaccessible, making use of an ecommerce

site difficult to the point of impossibility

5E) Presentation: Drempels Weg - The "Barriers Away" Project

(Jacko Van Dijk, presenter)

URI: http://www.drempelsweg.nl

Ministry of health in Netherlands has analyzed several

accessibility issues -- 2 major conclusions: lack of

accessible web sites and low representation of persons with

disabilities on the web; to achieved state secretary of

health appointed 4 ambassadors, of which I am one; the

ambassadors represent their own disabilities -- I represent

physically disabled another deaf, another blind, and another

representing the mentally impaired;

Last March there was a symposium attended by JB, some

ministries, institutes and companies signed a letter of

intent; ambassadors are inspecting, advising, and

encouraging their sites

Methodology: trying to analyze the site using teams -- each

month we analyze one site; last month analyzed Finance site;

this month national media sites; analyzing not only using

W3C standards, but usability criteria as well; made a

checklist navigation, consistency, how well can you fill in

a form, contact webmaster, etc. -- every time finish an

analysis, present findings to the media; this month had an

online video presentation in which we presented our report

on news and media sites

Second conclusion of alnysis: need more handicapped people

on internet; trying to get organizations, interest groups, and

schools involved in project; one way is to ask them to help

us test sites on usability basis -- works very well

Project will last through February 2002 -- by that time we

hope to have 100 sites signed to letter of intent

KHS: using usability as the carrot to encourage them?

Jacko: use to analyze if it is usable by a person with a

disability -- with resulting figures make our reports which

are not very encouraging; last report of Finance made clear

that only 1 web site met our criteria

JVL: was it a government site?

Jacko: yes, the tax site! usability is also very important

for us to address as a means of providing solutions for

increasing the social participation of persons with

disabilities in all areas of life through the web; that is

definitely something we would like to improve

5F) Roundtable Wrap-Up

JB: comments on priorities for open discussion looking at

specific issues on per country basis

* How to get initial activity started

* Harmonization of guidelines

* Technical assistance and training

* Areas of web to address: government

* Use of nationalized logos

* Coordination of translations

* Transparency of eExperts

* Legacy content

* Keeping accessibility from being diluted

* Appropriate strategies for different situations

* Authoring tools

* Getting more disabled individuals online

* Political campaign process in Europe

Lee: any guidelines for usability? Talk about accessibility

and skated around the perimeter of usability; real concern

of mine -- need to talk about intersections with usability

CMN: participation locally in non-English speaking

countries; participation in WAI as WAI; translation

Sylvie: to get to information on WAI web site when you are

not an english speaker isn't very easy--perhaps have page in

several languages explaining where you can find what --

perhaps a WAI-DA project


JB: issues from lunchtime

JB: start with promoting accessibility in the press

JH: human interest stories are what work -- prepare media-friendly

case studies; at RNIB we've recruited a group of media-friendly

blind/vi people willing to talk with press; also, sell a story as

an exclusive -- press releases don't get anywhere as a rule; get to know

a lot of journalists; respond with letters to national

publications whenever possible; try to mainstream the issue as much

as possible -- disability press versus business or mainstream press

-- don't sideline the discussion; personally only participate in

plenary sessions at conferences.

JB: additions?

GJR: companies respond verbally to case studies -- "yes, that's a

problem" or "there's really no reason for anything like that to

happen" but case studies don't make as big an impact as showing

someone the amount of information that a person with a disability

using their site (or interface) misses--that's what really drives

the point home, and what leaves a lasting impression, although you

as an advocate/liaison need to ensure that the point which companies

and the press pick up on isn't "gee, isn't it neat that a person

with disability X can use a computer", but "good god--this site

needs to be fixed!"

CMN: precisely--journalists want names; naming names and providing

faces and voices to match them makes a really big difference;

Christian: evaluated 12 Norwegian municipalities that are online,

and none were Single-A compliant -- got media coverage because it

was controversial/scandalous

JH: if get a feature in a magazine, get your campaign's supporters

to write letters to spur debate and to keep the discussion going/the

issue alive

David: how do people want to hear the story? Need to

present stories in a positive way, not the "name them and

shame them" way -- may be cultural differences in the way

the press is approached in each country; what, for instance,

would you do when you have a web site that isn't that good,

but it is the best of all these bad ones?

JB: in English, we have an expression for that -- "damning

with faint praise"

David: are we on the right track?

JH: we do highlight the good, but the press wants the dirt:

how much did it cost? How difficult was it?

PB: depends upon the audience; some need a positive message

and some need to be shamed; an audience that has to effect

changes (university or government agency) I've found it is

best to speak in a positive tone, rather than you've done

it all wrong, start over from scratch

JH: be constructive and explain the "whys" and "hows" to

those who have to implement the changes

JB: who else is using the media to promote/effect web

accessibility and how effective is it?

CMN: by saying "name names", I don't think that anyone is

saying that one should gratuitously slam a site or its

sponsoring entity, but when it is appropriate to illustrate a

situation, give the press a name -- a reporter doesn't want to

hear that 13% of sites are more accessible than when your

campaign began, he or she wants a specific example, and will

be interested in a before/after comparison, which is an avenue

for advocates to highlight recurrent or common problems to a

wide audience

Jorge: in Portugal, the first study of the accessibility of

public administration web sites needed a classification scheme,

ranging from accessible to inaccessible on a scale; we created

an access index that evaluated the accessibility from 1 to 5--

with 5 being the best and 1 being the type of site at which you

get stuck on the front page; that strategy had a lot of impact;

led to competition between entities, which is the sort of

situation that advocates/organizations need to take advantage

of; tried to take study results to the press, but it didn't

have a big impact; we are trying now to come up with an image

similar to the Bobby logo--that is, a nice, friendly policeman

(the policeman as an image helps reinforce the fact that, in

Portugal, accessibility has a legal basis); in evaluating a

site, perhaps using red and yellow cards like a football

referee would be good, global iconography; such simple

iconography could have an instant impact--a collection of 3

cards (green, yellow, and red) could not only be easily

understood, but could be used to construct an index to present

the results of our studies

JB: please do not discuss logos until that topic is under

discussion; I'd like to concentrate for a moment on the

question of how to generate more participation in the

promotional effort within your country--expanding the small

nucleus upon which you currently rely

CMN: in Melbourne there's been a local accessibility group

that's been around for 4 years; when there are a bunch of

people looking at local issues, having people in other parts

of the world share their experiences can be extremely helpful;

it's a good place to go for local news and resources, but by

having non-Australians address the group, it makes the members

of the group feel connected to the global effort

Christian: Norway just launched a site about WCAG; state

information office has stated that all government sites must

be compliant, but no teeth to ruling; we've just begun this

work--what are the smart moves to make people participate?

HB: in Denmark, when my organization, which is dedicated to

blindness and low vision issues/advocacy, was approached by

the state information office to perform an accessibility

analysis, we were quite a small group of people; we asked for

people with other disabilities to assist us--through youth

organizations, for example, we invited people into our review

team; also used inter-agency/organizational contacts; main

thing is to make participation attractive enough so that

individuals actually end up participating in the process--then

they will bring the issues that emerge, as well as information

on achieving accessibility, back to their own organizations;

you should also contact user groups, individual disabled

groups; the concepts of usability and access for all can draw

in disabled and non-disabled participants; make it clear to

both disabled and non-disabled participants that we need your

experience and knowledge

Jacko: tried that, but people only wanted to participate if

they directly and immediately benefited; would like to think

that people are altruistic, but their actions keep proving

that they're selfish

JB: how much involvement is there in your initiative? There

were 3000 people at the launch--a very impressive display;

hadn't imagined that you could get that many people going to

an event on web accessibility

Henk: the important thing is to get the attention of the

important people; when there is money, you can do a lot; yes,

our kickoff cost a lot of money, but we consider it an

investment, not an expenditure

JVL: people were willing to come because promises were made--

danger in promising things that you can't guarantee; you might

be disappointed at the turnout at the one-year benchmark


Jacko: we made promises and we will keep them, but always hope

to do more than what we've stated--to do that, however, we need

a lot of help, which we don't always have

JB: after the main event, did most of the people who were there

not remain involved?

Jacko: was surprised by the number of people who attended, but

when we asked people to participate directly and give us input,

there was a problem getting people to do so

David: we've asked a lot of people without success; every month

we contact 3 or 4 companies, organizations, and schools to ask

if want to help test sites, but there are not many takers

JB: incremental involvement may be a strategy; several people

said, I want to get people's contact information; my intention

is to take the final registration list and give that back to all

the participants--name and organization and email address as

given at registration; if have any web site or web sites that

others might be interested in, please email them to me within a

day or 2 and will try to build it into the WAI site [scribe's

note: JB's eddress is <jbrewer@w3.org>]

HB: would it be possible in the minutes to connect the links to

the sites we have been discussion today as a reference list at

end of the minutes?

JB: yes, but there are at least 2 or 3 times as many sites which

may be useful which haven't (yet) been mentioned

Item 6. Topic: Reviewing Web Sites for Accessibility & Usability

SD: for 1 or 2 years now, BrailleNet has been reviewing web sites

from the public sector; we have a list of the web sites we have

reviewed; we gave each site a number of stars according to

accessibility -- 4 stars is a site that is fully WCAG compliant

and that is usable; zero stars is a site that is completely

inaccessible; review according to the WAI guidelines, but also

testing sites with users and people who know underlying markup

languages and experts in usability; have reviewed many public

sector sites because the government has promised to have public

sector sites made accessible; many are now asking us for a review;

have also reviewed web sites in the private sector as well--

newspapers, banks, supermarkets, etc.--despite the fact that there

is no compelling reason for them to make their sites accessible, as

there is no law about accessibility of private sites, whereas there

are rules governing public sector sites

SD: Training others the review methodology and procedure; began as

a team of only 2 or 3; it is a very long process to train someone

to do this; need a little guide describing how to review a site

with a screen reader, how to review a site using magnification,


JB: want to remind people of the WAI Resource Suite which EO is

actively developing -- some of the issues it addresses are: how

you can build a business case, how you can build an implementation

plan; as we began to flesh out the Resource Suite, we found that

we kept accumulated more and more topics, which we want to address

in a series of appendices, such as the demographics of disability;

auxiliary benefits of accessibile design/interfaces; recommended

process for reviewing web sites, etc.; material will probably be

pulled in from elsewhere; other topics which need to be/will be

addressed are: how to monitor sites for compliance; use of

different types of tool--each picks up some things and misses

others; how to use the checklist for WCAG; having people with

different types of disabilities be part of the review; we may

have good draft ready for formal review within a month or 2;

various WG members working on different parts; a year and a half

ago were looking into a gallery and review process as well as a

training process (developing distributed review teams)

JVL: what access tool you use is important, as not all give

the same results -- where do you state that?

JB: use of particular screen readers such as JFW as an

evaluation tool; one member has been using JAWS just for

evaluation purposes for 2 to 3 years -- went to a full day

of training and discovered that she had made a number of

false assumptions; need to highlight risks of using a tool

with which you aren't familiar for analysis

JH: we discourage use of a particular tool for review--want a

cross-section of the technologies being used, not just the

"major" ones; as for testing, while testing with disabled

people can't be overemphasized, don't pick on a single

disabled individual within your organization or company--that's

only one person, not a representative sample, and like as not,

that individual is already overburdened answering every other

question about accessibility fielded by that organization or


Donna: check against WCAG -- don't' concentrate on specific

types of browsers and AT; web sites should conform to WCAG

not access tech capacities

JVL: professional testers or a user testing -- a regular

user simply test to see if can get info, which is different

than having a professional analysis; user tests can be

influenced both by the way an individual uses a tool as well

as by the tools themselves

Emmanuelle: have a document about techniques for evaluation

-- section on cultural information -- will send you this

document; how to evaluate a site is explained in this

document; explains commonly used tools

JB: another resource is the list of Evaluation & Repair


URI: http://www.w3.org/WAI/ER/existingtools.html

GJR: other internationalization issues include: (a) the lag

time between software releases (between when software is

available in English and when it is available in localized

versions); (b) compromised functionality of

localized/nationalized releases--does it have all of the

features of the original release? (c) does the application

of a patch or plug-in especially designed to increase access

compromise the localized language settings (the MSAA

syndrome); usability issues -- testing of users in their own

environments is extremely important; non-disabled testers need

to be on guard against false assumptions gained from using

adaptive equipment out-of-context, such as using a screen-reader

with the monitor turned on and a mouse in hand, as well as the

"over-learning" phenomenon -- as I warned the EO member who

received several days worth of training using JFW, "you

probably know a lot more about the intricacies and capacities

of JFW than 85% of those of us who use it on a daily basis as

our sole means of extracting information from a computer"

Haarold: eEurope action plan includes using national centers

of excellence for review purposes--I'd like that topic


CMN: one of the things that comes up is the situation with

what types of tools do people have varies greatly from

country to country; if a whole population has a particular

set of equip and constraints, have to be aware of those

things; people need to provide us with that information

because it will impact a lot of WAI work, in particular


HB: in Denmark all blind people use JAWS 3.5, so is easy to

test, but normally don't recommend that designers buy a copy

of JAWS, because it is difficult to learn -- even though

I've used it for years, I often contact a blind user to find

out if I'm using it correctly and finding what their

experience is; be aware of the capacities of your review

team--make sure that you have a cross-section of users; my

organization is currently setting up a database containing

the names of blind people who have volunteered to review sites,

so that we have a bank of testers from which to draw

// Jacko Van Dijk leaves //

JB: 2 other topics we were going to try to ease into --

usability aspects of reviewing and logo use

David: surprised how much discussion going on about visually

impaired and not so much about other handicaps--usability

may be more important for other handicaps; testing and

reviewing a site for usability, can get a broader range of

people for whom you make the site accessible and makes it

more of a challenge

JB: not the policy of WAI to focus on any single disability

group -- want to promote partnership between disparate

disability organizations

David: our review contained 7 questions--people rate a site

on scale of 1 to 5; we then compute a score per site and a

score based strictly on WCAG compliance; another scale from

1 to 10 judges the usability and accessiblility of the site,

and we then take the average

Ivan: started a discussion about starting a usability

working or interest group at W3C

GJR: speaking personally, but echoing the sentiment of

almost all of the disability-rights organizations i've

spoken with on the topic of web accessibility, Triple-A

compliance to WCAG is only an expression of the base

functionality needed to provide access to pre-identified

audiences of persons with disabilities--namely, those about

whose functional limitations we know enough to encapsulate

our knowledge of those means and methods that enable persons

with certain functional limitations overcome them in the

form of guidelines, checkpoints, and techniques; the rest

are, or, rather, should be, covered by general usability;

WCAG represents our best efforts at addressing all of the

accessibility problems and solutions which are within our

ken; we need to explore usability testing as a means of

exposing accessibility holes and solutions we haven't yet

either encountered or dreamed of

Item 7. Topic: Logos

JB: many logos for web accessible; encouraged to use certain

ones of them, developed a logo specific to WCAG -- 3 levels

of conformance; self-claiming conformance that link back to:


WAI may have a definition on our site that other

certification processes conform to WAI

certification/conformance, but that is for the future

HB: is a logo for one page or for an entire site? Logo on

first page of web site often leads to an inaccessible

GJR: the page JB cited certainly implies, if not outright

states, that WCAG logos are page-specific -- that the scope

of the claim is the page/document on which the logo appears;

the conformance section of WCAG is more specific, indicating

that conformance claims are per-page:


JB: some discussion about use of logos in appendix for

business plan;


Donna: just introduced a logo scheme -- refers to our own

audit, and people don't get it unless they pass the audit

Item 8. Topic: Policy Discussion

JB: what are some of the questions concerns, considerations

that arise, and what are some of the opportunities and/or

concerns at a European Union level

Ima: Centers of Excellence and Design for All (CEDA), a

network that is a target of eEurope initiative; not only

deal with accessibility, but a wide number of disciplines;

need to identify centers with knowledge in Europe and to

link them together; our idea is that as much as we would like

to change the world tomorrow, need to work in the future

generations; trying to introduce educational schemes -- get

Design for All considerations into the curricula of

educational centers; accessibility is only one item of these

centers -- sites of CEDA not yet been identified; proposals on

how to proceed on nomination and linking of centers still being

considered; it is a sensitive issue -- ideally should be an

open and inclusive process, in which the best of the best are


JB: how to find out about contacts in Expert WG and concern

about target date for Europa site conformance being 2004

Ima: trying to focus political level to give attention to

issue of web accessibility and to analyze situation within

member states; a step that needs to be taken very very

carefully; some countries are very advanced in legislation,

others that are pushing and others that are very reticent to

do anything; a common European statement requires compromise

and consensus; one partner is the European commission --

having the site accessible by 2004 is a realistic deadline -

- target for this year is to have political commitment to

make sites accessible; work is being done in parallel on

fixing existing sites; can't put an unrealistic date into

the process -- a common effort that needs not to be derailed

JB: legacy content

KHS: timing -- the US lost 15 years by having in place

legislation that had no authority; as a Section 508

coordinator, my experience has been that everyone sat on

their hands until it was too late; a lot of talk but very

little action -- need 2 dates as far as when you are going

to implement anything -- need an earlier date and a fallback

date; legacy content and systems -- issue is lack of funds

JB: with regard to web access what was decision made on

legacy content

KHS: not responsible for legacy content -- Rehabilitation

Act will hopefully be used as a club to force legacy content

conversion; need to plan for the money, plan for the

training, but need support from management and a strong tool

kit that can assist conversion

Ima: not a deadline by which Europa will be accessible --

new version will be created between 2001 and 2004 -- hoping

that by 2004 will be able to say that a reasonable level of

access has been achieved; accessibility is part of all new

contracts; remember -- these things take time in order to be

done correctly; it is not a piece of legislation -- it is a

public commitment to make the web sites accessible -- can't

take them to court over this; how can this be used? Need to

inform users of the commitment made by member state

governments; have involvement from IDEA, but need more

national administration support -- money, support -- right

now, there is no money -- a zero budget; representatives of

members states helped to form this document; encourage

people to speak with national representatives; collecting

good examples and negative examples

KC: we in europe are in danger of making a very serious

tactical error -- the US and Australia have endowed a

demographically small group to exercise a constitutional

right to information -- EU is a trading block that has

nothing to do with rights and only has had a small social

conscious grafted onto it later in life; the main

justification for digital service initiatives in Europe

isn't to increase access to information for individuals,

but to decease the cost of government; the disabled

community, therefore, isn't an economically significant

enough group to exert pressure alone--we have to make

alliances with other communities, such as ethnic

minorities, and others to combine to make a powerful

enough economic block that our voices will be listened to

// expert list will be sent to: eeurope-pwd@egroups.com //

Ima: although I agree with many of KC's points, and I share

some of his concerns, I must remind him and the others in

attendence that there are other activities going on which

are based on Article 30 of the Treaty of Amsterdam--the

first example is a non-discrimination in employment

regulation that has to be approved by the member states;

granted, it needs to be extended to address goods and

services, but it is a start; there are also discussions

ongoing between the European Parliament and the European

Commission about purchasing and procurement regulations;

rights are emerging; what worries me is the confusion in

member states as to how decision s are made in the EU--

decisions are made by member states, most by consensus,

and some by qualified majority; many proposals have been

blocked by member states, so the answer to the question

"to whom should I talk?" is your government

JB: before we break, I'd like to set the stage for

wrapping up our policy discussion:

1. can we summarize the 2 or 3 points of influence where

using the contact info which JVL and others have

requested would be helpful if there was a common

direction towards getting convergent web accessibility

policies initiated?

2. are there a few points that have been particularly

effective when attempting to get a policy in place?

// 15 minute break //

// end GJR minute/begin PB minutes [amended & annotated by GJR] //

JB: In the EO group, one of the appendices that we're working

on is auxiliary benefits, demographics, organizational policies,

etc. (Judy reads down list on web site). From the current draft

under the business case draft. Going to the draft of "developing

organizational policies" - governments often look at this

document. There are 20 changes that we still need to make. In

some cases, countries are implementing policies that say "adopt

the WAI guidelines", but really there are three sets. It would be

interesting if countries adopted all of them, but that's probably

not what they intended. If you only mean web sites, then refer to

the specific guidelines by name and by version number (e.g. 1.0).

When other versions come out, then you can roll over your policy

to the new version, which might streamline the process for the


CMN: In Australia, they just refer to the guidelines, and

they do specify the level and version number. But in the

anti-discrimination law, there is no specific reference.

JB: You could reference single A or double A, or some other

specific level. Make sure that you are specific in your

policy settings. (Interruption to talk about taxis and other

transportation arrangements). Anything that anyone wants to

talk about with regard to policies in Europe

Ima: We need feedback from other member states. Please send

us information. We will distribute it among others. Please

enter into a dialogue with us. You can contact eEurope also,

but feel free to contact us directly.

Ivor: Looking at the Web pages that you've already shown,

with the business case, corporate sphere, education, etc. I

think we can break down the focus areas. Implementation

of the guidelines cannot be the responsibility of just one

particular area. Grassroots organizations can be effective

in some places, and top-down methods in others. Transfer of

good practice (a European slogan) is a good one to keep in

mind. Cultural location of the approaches must be taken into

account. In the EO activities, try to take into account the

embedding issue with different players in the larger picture

across countries - strive for holistic models. Multi-

stakeholder initiatives.

JB: That is the model that we're using in the WAI. We try to

create a forum for all interested parties to come to the

table and develop consensus solutions. Perhaps an appendix

page for organizing strategies.

Kevin: I have a problem with this. Benchmarks and so forth

are hard to transfer to other countries. Plus you can't

transfer or copy something that hasn't yet been made. The

milestones tend to be artificial. People should create some

concrete examples of what we have created in the abstract.

Somebody actually needs to do it.

Ivor: But it will be done differently in different countries.

Some countries have organizations in place for training,

while others need to train the trainers. Sometimes the

business sector takes the initiative. We have to take things

in a multi-faceted way, not just one model.

JB: Within the WAI we could try to also monitor overall

progress of approaches by organizations, and not just the

effectiveness of the WAI guidelines on web sites. Judy

displays the web site for the National Council on

Disability, which analyzes things that are still not

working, and publish a report which gives recommendations on

what should change about the approach that organizations are

taking. Would it be useful for us at the WAI to develop an


David: I think that it would definitely be a very smart thing

to do.

Ima: Regarding Kevin's comments on the need for funding and

to do something "big": we thought that there was going to be

a lot of money to do this initiative, but the reality is

that we have had absolutely zero funding. Sometimes

organizations participate out of self-interest, which is a

good thing. I'm not saying that money is not necessary, but

it is not the only solution. Last week we had a meeting with

the European standardization agencies. It has always been a

dream of ours, which is now reality. They voluntarily said

that they would make their pages accessible, without us

asking them to do so. The fact that politicians hold up the

accessibility flag has been amazingly effective. Others say

that we also want to be accessible. The movement is self-

generating to a large extent.

JB: To summarize: Try to encourage multiple centers of

excellence. Involve more user groups in he process. Use and

build on the eEurope initiative more. Distribute lists of

member representatives from eEurope. Think of ways to use

benchmarking creatively. Help develop long-term education


Jaap: Our educational initiatives are outdated too soon by

the growth of technologies

JB: Within the WAI, we need to focus more on the long-term

educational situations.

Ima: Without long-term education, the problems will repeat


JB: Continuing with summary: suggested approaches for

evaluating the effectiveness of policies or approaches. Many

of the things we are talking about cannot be done by the

WAI, but it is important to get the info out in the open in

a European forum

Ima: There are many experts in various groups. We need that

kind of participation. I encourage participants to visit the

EC's Information Society Technologies (IST) web site, located

at: <http://www.cordis.lu/ist> -- send your ideas to us

Brigitte: There are web developers now working on these

issues. Many developers now think that they can't live

without all of the inaccessible elements.

JB: Get with the EO group, because we discuss current issues

at the beginning of each telecon call. What about other ways

that people want to exchange info or strategies? Was this

meeting useful? Interested in another opportunity to meet

again within a few months? I know that some people wanted to

come but couldn't. Your feelings?

Haarold: I've found it very useful

Jaap: Me too.

Haarold: We need to inform each other about events going on,

projects, etc. How can we keep informed, without reading


JB: That's one of the things that Sylvie and I will be doing

--sending info out in news-briefs

Helle: The WAI page has upcoming events listed. It would be

nice to see more European events listed.

JB: We usually just list events that are formally scheduled.

There is a calendar of technology conferences. Any event

that you know of that has presentations or that would be a

good candidate for presentations, please submit an email to

<wai-events@w3.org> so that we can list it on the EO Events



JB: What do people want from each other?

David: Another meeting in a couple of months.

JB: Possibility of a meeting in Berlin on Sept 18 and 19.

We're waiting to hear about another event. 13 people have

already said they would be interested in a meeting on that

date.) We are trying to combine or coordinate WAI meetings.

Any other thoughts in terms of networking?

Kevin: We need some sort of structure to communicate between

us. We don't want five more lists. But many of us don't know

where to go as a central point.

JB: Right now we have a limited number of entries in a

database in the WAI DA - individuals are appointed as

"reflectors" to send info to other individuals and groups.

When we send to EDF, and if they send to their member

organizations, they may or may not reflect the messages to

others. How many other people have mailing lists that we can

reflect to? I'm talking about passing along info in WAI.

CMN: How many people are on the eEurope list

// about 10 people raise their hands //

Ima: It is a discussion group that was created with the idea

to keep people up to date (run by Margarita Luman in Sweden)

JB: We should publish that address for people to join

[scribe's note: the address is: <eeurope-pwd@egroups.com>].

JB: I want to go back to my original question. How many people

have mailing lists?




Helle [about 100 people],

similar lists in Norway [Christian],

e-access bulletin,

David: newsletter;

Gregory: I have a list where 20% of the users are European;

Emmanuelle: five lists run through SIDAR

Ivan: this info should be sent to our newsletter. The question

has arisen to ask whether non-English mailing lists can be run

in W3C space. Usually the local offices will do this; The

language used depends on the country: some use the "official"

language of the host country, others, such as newsletter

circulated by the Netherlands office at CWI, use a mix of

national language and English; choice of language often a

political issue, especially in countries with significant


JB Other lists? (no)

Sylvie: please send information about lists to me:

## fill in the address here because I couldn't get it all ##


JB: If you have other lists, then please contact Sylvie. If

you have colleagues who weren't here today, please contact

them. Other networking strategies?

CMN: This will be in the minutes (CMN projects some pages

that will be attached ## create a link here ##) There is a

list in Spain that has done some work on the translations,

on the glossary and other items. They have campaigns to

pressure people and so on. They have a Spanish language

accessibility-checking tool. Every year they have a conference

in Madrid. This year it will be in Argentina in the end of

October. The Spanish census comes around this year. You can

submit your census info electronically. They were making sure

that the census was accessible. They have quick tips and other


[GJR's note: the URIs of some of the resources refered to by

CMN above follow -- note that, while all of the referenced pages

are in Spanish, each has a "translate" link:

1. SIDAR's Information & Resources Start Page


2. translations of W3C and WAI documents into Spanish:


3. SIDAR's translators' emailing list:


to subscribe to SIDAR's translators' list, send an emessage to:


4. public discussion list on web accessibility problems & solutions:


5. Spanish-language accessibility utilities:


JB: Thank you.

Hans: Jacko already gave a little presentation on what we

did. We also help with the whole process of creating a web

site, and certifying it. Yesterday we were asked to speak

before 8 authorities; the government has said that they will

contribute money to create websites, as long as the web site

is accessible. We also do presentations at schools, higher

education. We will try to reach the trainers of programmers,

so that they can include accessibility in their courses.

Lee: Today has been a great opportunity to meet people. The

whole idea of the eEurope portal is a pilot project for the

Europa 2 web site. Europa 1 was thrown together as a reaction

to the emergence of the Internet. Version 2 has the WAI

guidelines built into it. If you want to build a site for

Europa 2 you have to comply. The effectiveness of the

compliance is another question altogether. The real issue is

in compliance. I have always advocated the right technology

underneath, i.e. XML. With the major restructuring of Europa,

they are quite happy to go to XML. My question is this: we want

to build something that is accessible. Do we build multiple

sites, or just one site? They are going to use a web content

management system. We are talking about a server-side template

system. They want to automate a lot of processes.

JB/majority of group: Just one site!!!

CMN: This is a fairly technical discussion. I would encourage

you to take the question to the technical groups--in

particular, the Web Content Accessibility Guidelnes Group. The

short answer is to not build a second site. But there is a

longer answer.

JB: I want to wrap up with the different groups that exist.

Today this has been a look at a partial group. I want to ask

Ivan to talk about the possibility of joint seminars with

W3C offices.

Ivan: What happens is the local offices organize meetings on

topics that are of interest to the local community. It is

important to realize that the offices are often in

institutions such as this one in Amsterdam, which are

staffed by techies who don't always understand all of the

issues at hand. Still, the offices are open to that kind of

contact. Build up the local contacts at your local office if

you have one.

JB: The local offices can build up contacts with industry and

create bridges to other organizations. The WAI has many

lists that you can join. (Judy reads down list of mailing

lists.) I know that everyone is busy, but please look at the

lists. They are open forums that you can join.

JB: in conclusion, I'd like to thank you all for attending,

and for the spirited exchange of ideas.

Last updated 6 February, 2002 by Judy Brewer, jbrewer@w3.org

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