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EOWG Meeting, December 7, 2001


  1. CL: Chuck Letourneau (Ottawa, Canada, scribe)
  2. SH: Sarah Horton (Dartmouth College)
  3. HB: Harvey Bingham (consultant)
  4. NL: Natasha Lipkina (HP)
  5. DS: Doyle Saylor (Wells Fargo Bank, San Francisco)
  6. KA: Kathleen Anderson (State of Connecticut)
  7. JA: Jean-Marie d'Amour (CAMO, Montreal, Canada)
  8. HS: Henk Snetselaar (Bartimeus Accessibility, NL)
  9. AG: Audrey Gorman, consultant (late of American Library Association late)
  10. SD: Sylvie Duchateau (BrailleNet, FR)
  11. CV: Carlos Velasco (Frauenhoffer, Germany)
  12. LC: Libby Cohen (University of Maine)
  13. AA: Andrew Arch (Vision Australia Foundation)
  14. HJ: Helle Bjarnø (Videncenter for Synshandicap, Denmark)
  15. JB: Judy Brewer (WAI, chair)

Outreach Updates & Intros

HS: RNIB made application to EU for new project and asked Henk's group to be partner. Aim is to use W3C WAI guidelines with students with sensory impairments to train teachers on how to use guidelines to develop training materials and then test with students, and see how the gained know-how should be spread over EU countries. Project is still in application stage, including Austria and in Denmark. Project includes tasks including negotiations with WAI to foster ongoing

AG: ALA recently passed a policy on Library services for PWD, and ALA must be accessible. Developed a guide for Libraries. Includes reference to WAI guidelines. At ALA annual conference in June, she had put together an accessibility pavilion with vendors, her booth had three demonstrations of accessible workstations, and handed out things including "WAI Getting Started" document.

HJ: did a presentation to Danish "Webgrrls" in Copenhagen - they were very interested in the concepts of accessible design.

AA: OZeWAI conference (http://www.ozewai.org/): had 140 participants for 2 days of learning and sharing about about web accessibility; proceedings are being added to the Web site. Vision Australia Foundation ran two days of workshops for the South Australian Government (Nov 29 & 30) and a full day public workshop in Brisbane (Dec 5).

NL: At HP, started phase 2, major portion of their Web site will be brought to compliance by end of March. Ran an accessibility workshop (2 hours). HP has lots of Web pages and applications (e.g. "business store configurator" - a dynamically generated application that is giving them trouble on how to make the highly scripted application directly accessible -temp solution is to only make it available to sales reps and not try to make it available to the public). Could use some advice.

JB: suggested Natasha post the request to the WAI mailing lists or technical assistance list at wai@w3.org.

CV: there was a presentation last week at an EC E-government conference organized on accessibility - five presenters, including Helen Petrie, Kevin Carey, etc.


Implementation Plan discussion

Current document on EO - http://www.w3.org/WAI/EO/Drafts/impl/

Sarah Horton's revision: implementation-SH.htm

JB: What do people think?

Section: Establish Responsibilities

CL: * for small organizations, it may be sufficient to designate a "point person" for Web accessibility... About "point person" ... Can anyone think of a more universal, or at least more descriptive phrase, than "point person"? What about "key individual" or "single employee", or "team member" (as is suggested a few lines later in Sarah's revisions)?

All: some discussion about alternatives for "point person" - person responsible for communications, but not necessarily accountable for the results or

"Accessibility coordinator", or "contact person".

SH: why is it here, since it also seems to appear later?

JB: the bullets may refer to whether the questions are internal or external.

AG: agrees that it is not just small orgs, but also large ones especially at the early stage of processed.

AA: agrees with Audrey.

JB: do people feel that the existing comments in the doc cover the situation enough?

AA: No. Someone must be designated as "point of contact"

JA: In a small org, we need someone who is also responsible for contact and for recommendations. "Person responsible for…"

AG: could we add to "… assign lead coordinator"

SH: maybe add "Web accessibility" makes it more specific.

JB: maybe the whole section on "Establish Responsibilities" is backwards.

HJ: please explain "Champion".

JB: a high-level person who can promote and move the agenda forward. If we were revising this section, I suggest: take Establish comm. Team and comm. Plan" and make it the first bullet. The content of "Identify High level champ" would become last bullet. "Identify key reps" would be pulled into a second level bullet under establish "Coordination team". Essence preserved under "Communication Plan"

[Scribe missed some discussion - word processor problem.]

JB: are one or two folks on the call willing to scan the document to see if any bullets and sub-bullets are mis-aligned.

AG: will do so.

Section: Conduct Initial Assessment

KA: was it in this doc or another one - weren't we going to address finding out what policies or laws apply?

AA: it is covered in the next section,

JB: but we may have decided to move it up, and perhaps we just forgot to do so. I will check the change log.

KA: I do see it at the beginning of the next section, but it really does make sense to have it happen earlier.

AA: agrees it should come sooner.

CL: agrees it should be in Initial Assessment.

JB: propose: add one item to "Conduct Initial Assessment" - the item is "find out whether org is subject to external requirements." Eliminate lead and sub bullet from "Develop org". Leave other one in.

KA: re: Conduct Initial Assessment, 4th bullet

· " Assess suitability of current software to support development of accessible Web sites - organizations with decentralized software procurement practices will need to review more products "

Should we link to the WAI Authoring Tool Conformance resource on this topic?

JB: lets look at this issue later in the meeting.

Develop, Promote, and Support Organizational Policy

AA: "organizational policy should reflect at least the minimum accessibility requirements mandated by the government, particularly for government and commercial sites". It is not just government rules, but there may be industry or agencies guidelines or standards that might apply.

Discussion: don't phrase it to exclude other bodies such as industry associations.

LC: is this the place to reference W3C? This should be a place to be instructive by making the W3C an example.

CL: what about adding a statement about existing national or international standards, such as W3C.

JB: we can modify to indicate that government requirements may be minimum and there are "internationally recognized guidelines from W3C"

LC: "Conduct briefings" - may be too limiting - there are other mechanisms.

AG: should we pull out Promote and Support, from Develop section?

JB: not sure… some use for lumping these together. Judy has done a lot of presentations with this format, and there is some neatness in having them lumped together, but would be happy to make it more concise. Maybe just add more detail for promote and support.

AG: in her task of checking through for pulling bullets together: she could focus on this section.

DS: agrees that the promotion section should be improved.

JB: asked Natasha how HP handles internal promotion?

NL: constant communication, promotional days, presentations company wide, (not just for the Web, but all products and services).

AG: has to leave the call (9:42 EST).

LC: also has to leave (9:43 EST).

CL: in the Government of Canada various mailing lists are used to promote the policies and techniques. More senior bureaucrats are talking about this in general.

HS: similar in Netherlands, entering a new phase with the "quality mark". Will set up a program to have automatic rechecking of compliance.

JB: maybe should simplify section to just "Develop" and move promotional stuff down after "Select Software" or after "Training" and call it, e.g. "Promote Ongoing Awareness of Web accessibility"

HJ: question: are we talking about general promotion, or specific promotion within a government department?

CL: the entire Government of Canada is considered "one organization" for the purposes of the accessibility policy. Andrew agreed that this was true of Australian government too.

JB: titling it simply "Promotion" may lead to confection. We will have to phrase or explain clearly that we mean internal promotion.

SH: wondering if we take promotion and support out, we should still leave briefings on the policy should still be under the development part, and only break out the "ongoing" promotion. Perhaps call it: "Promote Organizational Awareness of Web Accessibility"

JB: Sarah, please try the suggested rearrangement and see how it looks.

Section: Provide Training on Web Accessibility

Question about whether "develop an internal Web site with accessibility information and resources " is valid. Some discussion about "internal". Governments may want to make it a public site to make it easy for third-party developers to know the rules, but some private corporations may have specifically "internal" content. HP has both internal and external sites on accessibility.

Drop last three words from "conduct training sessions for Web masters and Web content developers in different departments"

Section: Monitor Web Site Accessibility

No comments.

General comment about "Key Resource" links. Can we indent them? Sarah will try.

JB: originally we had thought to have different modules for different types of organizations; Helle has talked to developers from different kinds of organizations.

HJ: some of the comments came from Andrew.

See email subject: " RE: Web design hints for the "implementation plan" draft.", in the archive. The relevant section is included here:

*Always make first drafts and concepts that are supposed to be shown to clients according to WAI guidelines and recommendations. If the first draft of a web page is made by graphical tools make sure that the use of color and contrast is according to WCAG and always check before showing to clients.

* Use internal checklists for different groups of staff or if few employees make different checklists for different work areas e.g. graphical design, programming, layout (CSS). This will make it easier to get an overview of the checkpoints relevant for different pieces of work. Make sure that the client has specified to what level of conformance the web site much comply to and if necessary specify for each page.

* Have contact to a group of end users from different disability communities that can help with testing and tell staff about the use of AT and demonstrate HPWD use the web. Establish contact between staff and other accessibility experts e.g. by encouraging staff to use different existing networks locally.

JB: should we add the paragraph in question, or is it too detailed?

NL: have to address accessibility issues at the beginning, e.g. when developing the visual style of the site.

AA: Agrees strongly.

JB: are we missing a section in this document?

Discussion: Yes, call it "Make your Web site Accessible"

Should it go before or after "Promotion"? Do it after "Training".

JB: Any other comments about this document?

HB: suggestion for "Monitoring", encourage any employees to communicate problems they notice to the appropriate resource.

All: General approval for the direction of the document.

SH: will do more fiddling with the document. New section needs work. Please send content for "promoting and supporting" to the EO list.

Selecting Software

As a separate topic for a new deliverable:

JB: please look at topic of "Selecting software"? How do we talk to people on this topic?

KA: initial response to AU conformance activities, but Judy doesn't think this is a good idea.

JB: have tried pointing people there and they get irritated. will try to draft a resource.

HJ: suggest: going to marketing literature of companies that make web-authoring products to see what their stuff says.

CV: tell them to use existing tools and plugins. But there is little available for automated dynamic things.

HJ: hard to find information on "Content Management" systems. None are accessible.

NL: elevate it to the procurement level, ask developers to develop tools accessibly. CL, AA our governments are doing this.

Next Friday meeting:

December 14, 2001.

Last revised 21 December, 2001 by Judy Brewer

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