Last modified: $Date: 2000/11/08 08:27:06 $
WAI Web Content Accessibility Guidelines:
Record of Working Draft Revisions
This page is for maintaining a record of changes between each revision of
the working draft for the page author guidelines. If you find the list is
incomplete or inaccurate please contact the editor, Wendy Chisholm, at
This version is a Recommendation.
This change list does not include some editorial changes
to the introduction, guidelines rationales, or glossary
during the Proposed Recommendation period.
- Added information about how the guidelines
do not discuss i18n or mobile access in detail.
- Checkpoint 1.1: Second bullet, added "(e.g., a chart)".
Third bullet, editorial changes.
In references to 9.1 and 13.10, removed parenthetical
descriptions (since at least one incorrect).
Some cleanup of MAP example with A element content.
- Checkpoint 1.2: Split into 1.2 (priority 1) and 1.5 (Priority 3).
Added cross references to related checkpoint 9.1.
- Checkpoint 1.3: New wording is
"Until user agents can automatically read aloud the text equivalent of
a visual track, provide an auditory description of the
important information of the visual track of a
- Checkpoint 1.4: New wording is:
"For any time-based multimedia presentation (e.g., a movie or
animation), synchronize equivalent alternatives (e.g.,
captions or auditory descriptions of the visual track)
with the presentation."
- (Old) Checkpoint 1.5: Deleted since subsumed by checkpoint 1.1
- Example text in 4.1 and 4.3 now more applicable.
Note that HTTP header information now in 4.3 only (since applies
to entire document). Added reference to RFC2068 (HTTP 1.1)
section on Content-Language.
- Checkpoint 4.2: priority change from
2 in some cases to always 3. Also, applies to first
instance only. Added to note that expansions of abbrevs can
be done inline.
- Checkpoint 5.3: New wording is
"Do not use tables for layout unless the content makes sense when
linearized or a linearized version that makes sense is
provided. When linearized, the cells must include the
proper structural markup. NOTE.
Once user agents support style sheet positioning, tables should not
be used for layout. Refer also to Checkpoint 3.3 and Guideline
- Checkpoint 6.2: Changed "descriptions and text equivalents"
- Checkpoint 6.3: New wording
"Ensure that pages are usable when scripts, applets, or other
programmatic objects are turned off or not supported. If
this is not possible, provide equivalent information on
an alternative accessible page. Also, the example
text now reads
"For example, ensure that links that trigger scripts work when
scripts are turned off or not supported (e.g., do
is not possible to make the page usable without
scripts, provide a text equivalent with the
NOSCRIPT element, or use a server-side script
instead of a client-side script, or provide an
alternative accessible page as per checkpoint
11.4. Refer also to guideline 1.
- Checkpoint 6.4: Removed the "until user agents" clause.
Now refers to "device-independence" rather than
- Checkpoint 6.5: New wording
"Ensure that dynamic content is accessible or provide an alternative
presentation or page. Example text changed to
"For example, in HTML, use NOFRAMES at the end of each frameset. For
some applications, server-side scripts may be more
accessible than client-side scripts."
- Checkpoints 7.1, 7.2 edited first clauses for clarity.
- Checkpoint 9.2: "keyboard operable" changed to "device-independent".
- Checkpoint 9.3: Removed HTML examples (onfocus, etc.)
- Checkpoint 10.2: Added "Until user agents".
- Checkpoint 10.3: priority changed
from 2 to 3
- Checkpoint 11.1: new wording
"Use W3C technologies when they are available and appropriate for a
task and use the latest versions when supported."
- Checkpoint 11.4: Added "(or functionality)" after "information".
- Checkpoint 13.10: Added reference to ascii art example
- Checkpoint 13.3: Comment after checkpoint now clearer.
- Checkpoint 13.7: Added "If search functions are provided"
to beginning of checkpoint.
- Checkpoint 14.2: New wording
"Supplement text with graphic or auditory presentations where they
will facilitate comprehension of the page." Also, NOTE deleted.
This version is a Proposed Recommendation.
- Name of document now has version "1.0".
- Some checkpoints were reordered so that
Priority 1 comes before Priority 2 before Priority 3.
- Some checkpoints within the same guideline and
the same priority were reordered so the most important
- Clearer navigation mechanisms: navigation among
checkpoints, clear links to techniques document,
highlighting and titles on links to definitions.
- Verification of use of "should" and "Must"
- Abstract now talks more clearly about audience.
- Added info that this document doesn't address
- Updated for Proposed Recommendation
and new Web Content Guidelines Working Group charter.
- Added more information about what's in techniques
document so that people will have a better idea of
where to find element and browser support.
How the guidelines are organized
- New information on guidelines structure
- New section on conventions used in the document.
- Now talks about scope.
- Left placeholder for when icons are ready.
The following guideline numbers refer to the
numbers in this version of the document.
- Previous guidelines 2 and 3 were merged into guideline 1.
- Here's the list of current checkpoints
and where they came from:
- 1.1 includes the old 1.1, 1.2, 1.3, 1.4, 2.1, 3.1, 3.3, and 3.4.
Note that the examples in 1.1 talk a little about when to use
a longer description.
- 1.2 is the old 1.7
- 1.3 is the old 2.2 with some wording changes
- 1.4 is new. It subsumes the old 3.2
- 1.5 is the old 1.6. See also new 13.10
- Old 4.2, now 2.2 priority changed to distinguish
text from images.
- 3.8 was old 1.8
- Wording of old 5.2 (now 3.3) changed to
"Mark up lists and list items properly."
- Priority of old 6.2 (now 4.2) changed: pri 2 for
first occurrence, pri 3 thereafter.
- Edited rationale.
- 5.2 (old 7.2) Changed wording.
- 5.4 (old 7.4) no longer talks about using "summary".
- 6.1 (old 8.2). Wording changed.
- New 6.3 about scripts off/not supported. Subsumes old 8.5 and 8.2
- New 6.4 on device-independent operation.
- All checkpoints in this guideline pri 2 but 7.1
- All of them begin with "Until user agents..."
- Old 9.2 now split into 7.1 and 7.2 to
distinguish blinking from flicker.
- Edits to rationale. Removed info about
no mice for braille displays.
- 9.1 was old 1.5
- 10.3 (old 12.3) Added note about who benefits.
- Some changes in rationale text.
- Added a link from 11.1 (old 13.1) to list
- New 12.3 subsumes old 14.3 and 14.5
- 13.1 (old 15.1) reworded. Added not about using "title"
- Moved definition of front-loading from rationale to 13.8
- 13.2 now talks about LINK with rel/rev. (note from old
15.3 moved to 13.2).
- 13.3 was old 15.4 and 15.5. Now priority 2.
- 13.4 (old 15.6) now priority 2.
- 13.6, old 15.10. Removed part about class="nav".
- 13.9 (old 15.10) rewritten to talk about
document collections. LINK and archives are techniques.
- New 13.10 from old 1.6: just about navigation
over ascii art.
- Previous checkpoint 15.6, now 13.4 wording changed.
- Rationale edited.
- 14.1 (old 16.1) wording changed.
- Old 16.2 now 14.2. Rewritten. Includes note on
benefits to nonreaders.
- Added description of content/structure/presentation
- Added definition of style sheet
- Added link over ascii cow.
- Minor rewrite of definition of DHTML.
- New definitions of equivalent, text equivalent, etc.
- Added definition of natural language.
- Added definition of assistive technology
- Added definition of tabular information
This is a revision of the Feb 26, 1999 revision in last call. This
draft is meant to indicate progress in accounting for resolved issues
and editorial changes.
Document structure changes
- Moved section on "Comments" to status section.
- Added a section entitled "Related documents"
after the status section that explains the relationship
between the guideilnes doc, the checklist (which is
an appendix to the guidelines) and the techniques document.
In this section, there is more "warning" about
unsupported attributes and elements. There is also
a list of tools (including navigation tools) in the
Techniques document to help readers track information.
- Moved introductory matter before guidelines
to a new section (2) immediately after the Introduction.
- Made priorities and conformance their
own sections (4 and 5 respectively).
Document usability changes
- Removed lots of STRONG and B elements
- Section numbering scheme now the following:
Header and reference sections are not numbered. Body
sections use 1, 2, 3.... Appendixes use A, B, C...
- Navigation tools added: links after each guideline
to next guideline, previous, and table of contents (suggestion
from Gregory Rosmaita).
- Links after guideline rationale to individual checkpoints
in the guideline.
- Long descriptions added to images.
- Most of the links from the guidelines to the
techniques are now clearly marked as leading
there. (The few remaining will be cleaned up soon.)
- Link text reviewed to ensure that it stands on its own.
- Links to definitions are marked up as such (class="dfn-instance")
and presented specially through style sheets (visually, with
- All Links to references at the end of the guidelines have
bracketed link text.
- All checkpoints are ordered by priority within a given
guideline EXCEPT for 13.4, intentionally left as the last
checkpoint of that section. Checkpoints that have been
renumbered due to reordering alone are not listed here.
Checkpoints moved for other reasons are listed below.
- The checkpoints in the appendix list of checkpoints
are grouped by priority, subgrouped by topic, and sorted
by checkpoint number. They link to the definitions
of the checkpoints in the guidelines document.
- Link in navigation bar to priorities removed.
- As per the guidelines, provided a link to skip
over the ascii cow.
There have been a lot of editorial changes (too many to list
exhaustively) based on very helpful comments from many reviewers.
Some more important changes include:
- The wording of the priorities has been revised slightly.
- The word "technique" is no longer defined as a first-class object
like "checkpoint" or "guideline". The "Techniques Document"
describes implementation, but as Eric Hansen pointed out,
the term Technique was used in a variety of situations in
the Techniques document. Links from the Guidelines to the
Techniques document simply refer to "Techniques".
- Use of "content developer" rather than author in most places.
- Use of "provide" rather than "design" or "use" where
- Removal of subjective language such as "if possible", "where
possible", etc. Removed from
checkpoints 5.6, 8.5, 10.1, 11.1, 15.1, 16.1, 13.3.
- Verification of use of "should" and "must" (to see
that corresponds to Priority 1 and 2).
- To be verified. There are
two terms clearly defined: "equivalent" and "description". The
former refers to functional substitute, the latter to
appearance and sound. There are text and non-text equivalents
and text and non-text descriptions. The terms "long description"
and "brief description" have been removed from the document
(except perhaps in the techniques document, which still
needs lots of editing.)
- Reviewed (and defined in glossary) the term "content". Content
refers to what is said and the markup to build it.
Changes to checkpoints
- 1.1 and 1.2: "title" on OBJECT eliminated as an
example of how to provide a text equivalent. Added cross-reference
from 1.2 to 8.5 and guideline 10.
- 1.5: added: Priority 1 -
Provide client-side image maps instead of server-side image maps except
where the regions cannot be defined with an available geometric shape.
- 1.7: changed to differentiate server-side and client-side
cases of redundant text links.
- 2.2: moved to 1.3 since refers to text equivalents primarily.
- 2.4: moved to 3.4 since relates to audio.
- 3.4: wording changed.
- 4.1: added a note that when text is purely decorative,
alternative mechanisms are unnecessary.
- 4.2: wording changed.
- 6.2: Proposed priority change - Priority 2 for first
occurrence in document, priority 3 thereafter.
- 7.4: Don't talk about captions to describe
layout tables, just "summary" attribute.
- 8.1: example removed since confusing.
- 8.5: wording changed and more rationale.
- 9.1 and 9.2: Wording "Until user agents ..." added
to emphasize UA responsibility here.
- 13.3 and 13.4: merged into 13.3.
Provide information so that users may receive documents according to their
preferences (e.g., language, content type, etc.). Priority 3.
Encouraged content negotiation.
- 15.3: Example in HTML of LINK element plus rel/rev attributes
to create nav bars (some user agents do this).
- 15.6: wording changed, otherwise too much like guideline 15.
- 16.2: added note about importance to non-readers.
Changes to guidelines
- Guideline 2: Removed "important" from guideline text
since "important" not a part of every checkpoint therein.x
- Guideline 4: Removed "perceived" from subhead.
- Guideline 6: Added notes to advise content developers
(1) not to misuse markup for presentation effects and to
(2) not misuse markup for fear of creating access problems (i.e.,
use tables for data!).
- Guideline 6: New guideline text: Clarify Natural Language Usage.
Also, last sentence of rationale changed.
- Guideline 7: Subhead changed.
- Guideline 8: Removed note about "at a minimum" and moved
to checkpoint 8.4, removing "at a minimum" part.
- Guideline 9: removed bout guideline not
applying for server-side redirects because the
note didn't apply to the entire guideline.
Instead, note moved to checkpoint 9.1.
- Guideline 11: edits to rationale
- Guideline 13: Note about using alt pages reworded somewhat.
- Guideline 14: Supply changed to Provide for consistency.
- Guideline 16: edits to rationale.
Changes to conformance
- Conformance levels are now A, Double-A, and Triple-A.
- An sample conformance statement is provided.
- Eric Hansen's full proposal has not
Changes to validation
- Title changed from "Testing" to "Validation"
- No direct links to techniques document. Instead,
one link in rationale links to entire section on
validation in Techniques Document.
- Edits based on Eric Hansen comments
- Validation 8: Added "grammar checker".
- Validation 9: New. About human review/editing.
- Validation 10: New. Review from disabled users.
Changes to glossary
- Since there is more in the glossary now,
there is less text in some rationale sections
(e.g., Guidelines 2 and 3).
- Added, but did not define, "accessible"
- Added a discussion of content, structure, and presentation.
- Added a definition of "equivalent" and "description".
Text equivalent defined there.
- Added "navigation mechanism" (see Guideline 15)
- Added "style sheets"
- Added "User agent"
Changes to references
- Added [PNG]
- Broke identify-changes into 2 checkpoints, identify-changes=p1,
- Changed "alternative text" to "text equivalent" as
- Added text to site-map checkpoint to emphasize usefulness.
- Combined guidelines descriptions and verbal-descriptions (previous 2 and
4, now 2)
- Added details of what is in archive files (available formats section),
- Added comment about minimizing page duplication,
- Added note that TEchniques will evolve more rapidly than guidelines,
- Critical -> important,
- Cleared up text about server redirect,
- Removed text-imap-links since alt-area covers it,
- Cleared up meaning of operating in a graphical environment,
- Removed must from 14.3,
- Added use-metadata (Pri 2) since RDF be come a REC yesterday,
- Deleted 16.11 and merged idea with 16.10
- Restructured lists of checkpoints for readability.
- Unified language of examples (e.g., "For example, in HTML use the
- Edited the whole document for grammar, syntax, etc..
- Shortened guideline text. After each guideline, there's a subheader with
more elaborate text.
- Edited all the rationales to read better.
- Using W3C global style sheet.
- Reworded alt-images to clarify that specific recommendations are given
for vario us types of images.
- Split user-control-refresh into no-periodic-refresh and no-single-refresh
- Edits to abstract, status section, introduction, guidelines organization,
and conformance statment. Also fixed ascii cow
- added checkpoint for device-indie events
- updated use-style-sheets to more generic proposal,
- added new 8.1 - avoid tables for layout,
- made wording for link-bypass more generic
- added link to DOM within new defn for DHTML
- Removed sections A and B and renamed single section,
- put all intro text from A a nd B at beginning of new section,
- replaced some guideline numbers with proper re placeable gadgetry,
- removed H3 from appendix
- Added HRs, now first two and last two sections aren't numbered, spell fix
- changed some should's to must, may's to should, and a must to a may
- made color contrast a P2 rather than P1
- added introduction
- added conformance statement
- edited intro to A
- New title: "Web Content Accessibility Guidelines"
- Acknowledgments edited and shared between guidelines and techniques
- Minor wording changes to guidelines phrasing to improve the table of
- Links added from tables (a.8) to a.13.5 and a.6.4 2.
- Reworded a.9.5 (for pages that use style sheets...) to include
"presentation markup" as well as general editing to make read better.
- Reworded A.1.3 (for all image map links, provide alt-text) so as to not
confuse the reader if they are using A and MAP
- Reworked the checkpoint re: OPTGROUP since said "hierarchy" and
OPTGROUPs can't be nested.
- Deleted parens around 2nd group of users in A.5
- Changed A.9.1 (provide fallback page for pages w/dynamic content, e.g.
NoFRAME) from P1 to P2, ala 1/28 telecon
- Reworded A.14.4 to be more general
- Added a checkpoint to address content negotiation (a.14.5 -
- Replaced the statement in B.1.2 "in HTML, use "longdesc".
Until "longdesc" is widely supported, also use a d-lin k or invisible
d-link" with "in HTML, use "longdesc" or a d-link."
- Changed title to Web Content Accessibility Guidelines
- Added the term "content developers" to prose
- Added statement about title change to status sections
- Updated copyright statement
- Added checkpoint to A.6 re: text, markup, and math.
- Added a list of W3C technologies (such as MathML, SMIL, HTML, XML, etc.)
- Mention MathML and SMIl in intro to A 2.
- Include link to "math included in images" in A.1 3.
- Rewrote A.1.6 (ascii art)
- Included cognitive disabilities in rationale for a.7 5.
- Included http in example for a.7.1 6.
- Rewrote the first three checkpoints for tables (a.8) to be more generic
and to include Daniel's algorithm
- Included pointers to other checkpoints that contain table checkpoints.
- Modified the note re: pdf translation ala Jason White suggestions.
- Added visual disabilities to rationale of b.1
- Changed "name" to "title" in B.1.2
- Links in the table of contents have been shortened to the beginning of
the guideline rather than the entire phrase.
- A new checklist has been added.
- Indexes removed from Guidelines and Techniques documents. These have been
replaced by the checklist.
- HTML examples have been validated.
- "headers attribute" added to the list of attributes in A.8.3
- Links to techniques are working - not all of the content is in the
techniques document yet, but the place holders now exist.
- It is now available in: plain text, HTML as gzip'ed tar, HTML as zip,
PostScript, and PDF.
- Comments from editors are in red and begin "Editor:"
- Technique lists are now flat. Thus every technique is referred to by
three numbers: section, guideline, technique. Organized this way, the
techniques all make sense when read out of context.
- The list of techniques by priority appears at the end of the techniques
document rather than the guidelines document.
- Major restructuring:
- C.3 (bundle documents for off-line reading) and B.4 (create good link
phrases) have been moved from being guidelines to techniques in C.2 (provide
mechanisms to facilitate navigation).
- Parts of C.2 were split into a new C.3 - " Use language and
formats that facilitate comprehension of information." Instead of adding
Hansen's "disclaimer" to the abstract, we added 2 techniques
- C.1 (use w3c technologies) became A.14
- B.3 (tables) became A.8 and the following technique added, " If
a table is used purely for layout,
do not use any structural markup
for the purpose of visual layout. For example, in HTML the table header
(TH) element causes the contents of a cell to be displayed centered and in
bold. Other attributes of a table, such as a caption describing the layout
purpose and content of columns is valuable, particularly if some cells become
navbars, frames, images, imagemaps, or lists of links."
- Section A was reordered to flow better - all of the scripting and
programatic stuff appears together.
- B.1 and B.2 were combined into B.1 (" B.1 Provide context and
orientation information for complex pages or elements.")
- With all of the combining and moving around, All of the items in C
(Good Design) are now parts of A and B (C.2 and C.3 became B2 and B.3).
- The introduction to "Transform Gracefully" was expanded to more
clearly specify how HTML can be accessible (with an explanation of screen
readers) so as not to frighten people away (in response to the results of Paul
- The techniques were generalized so that they might be more applicable in
the future. All of the HTML examples are explicitly identified as HTML.
- A.9 modified to include technologies other than W3C defined. The
guideline and rationale now read, " Ensure that pages using newer
technologies will transform gracefully into an accessible form if the
technology is not supported or is turned off. [Priority 1]
The everchanging landscape of technologies available on the internet is
influenced by W3C Recommendations (such as HTML) and proprietary formats (such
as ShockWave, and PDF). However, with each new release of Recommendations,
browsers, or plug-ins, new features are added that may not be completely
backwards compatible. For example, HTML 4.0 added the ability to attach style
sheets to a page and to embed scripts and applets into a page. Older
browsers ignore new features and some users configure their
browser not to make use of new features. These users often see nothing
more than a blank page or an unusable page when new features do not transform
- The following sentence was added to the rationale of A.8 (now A.7),
" This also means that the predominant language on the page must be
identified, as there is no "default" language."
- Scripts added to A.10
- Warning text was added to C.1.2 (alternative pages - now A.14) to clarify
why alternative pages are a last ditch option.
- Technique C.1.3 (now A.14.3) was added: When linking to resources that
are not W3C technologies, indicate what type of resource you are linking to.
For example, to link to a PDF file from an HTML document, set the
"type" attribute to "application/pdf" on the A element.
- Replaced the numbered name anchors with logical names.
- Added to the rationale about blink rates text regarding changes from
light to dark: People with photosensitive epilepsy can have seizures
triggered by flickering or flashing in the 4 to 59 flashes per second (Hertz)
range with a peak sensitivity at 20 flashes per second as well as quick changes
from dark to light (like strobe lights). [see
- C.1 (now A.14) wording changed to be more inclusive of non-W3C
technologies, "Wherever possible use a W3C technology, in accordance with
guidelines on its proper use. Where this is either not possible, or results in
material that does not transform gracefully you must provide an alternative
version of the content that is accessible. [Priority 1]"
- New section (1.8 Browser Support) added to techniques to link to features
that are not yet supported or not supported widely, such as OBJECT, accesskey,
etc. Added a paragraph in the abstract to link to this section.
- Definitions added for Braille display, Collate, and Link phrases (within
the context rather than in appendix).
- "Appropriately" is no longer used ambiguously.
- The following two techniques were added to the NEW B.2 (facilitate
- Definitions were added to the appendix for Applet, Braille, Image, Image
map, Page authors, Screen magnifier, and Screen reader
- C.4 ("Validate your pages and asses the accessibility...") was
moved into its own Appendix (A: testing).
- A.13 ("If all else fails...provide an alternative page") was
incorporated into C.1 ("Only use W3C technologies, where not possible
provide an alternative").
- As usual, quite a few slight changes in wordings.
- "Important" is defined in Appendix A and modifies
"graphics, scripts or applets" in A.2.
- The use of "WWW documents" was replaced with "Web
- Instances of "specification" have been replaced (where
appropriate) with "W3C specification."
- Text and links have been added to A.1 ("Provide alternative
text...") to make it easier to find out what needs to be done for spacer
images, images used as list bullets, etc. The rationale was updated to include
the phrase, "any user who cannot or has chosen not to view graphics."
- A.1.7 now says, "If OBJECT is used to incorporate an image, applet,
or script into a page, use any of the many ways to convey that information in
cases where the OBJECT cannot be perceived, such as with "title" or
within the body of the OBJECT element. [Priority 1]" and A.2.2 is similar.
- A link was added from A.7 to the discussion of structural vs.
presentation elements in the techniques document.
- A.7.4 no longer says that the flicker rate has to be in a certain
"flashers per second" range, the range is given in the rationale.
- The priority for A.12.5 was changed to P2 in all
instances (we missed a few last time around).
- C.1 was slightly reworded to become, "Only use technologies defined
in a W3C specification. Where not possible, provide an accessible
- The main document is now the linear form and the table is a supplemental
- Added a second paragraph to the Abstract.
- The third priority was changed from "This guideline should be
followed..." to "This guidelines may be followed..."
- A1.4 previously read "Don't use server-side image maps unless the
same functionality or information is available in an alternative accessible
format." It now reads, "If server-side image maps must be used,
- Provide text links for each hotspot in the image map.
- Provide alternative text for the image map image (see A.1.1)
- A.5 was previously, "Design documents in a way that allows
alternative presentations to be provided." The only technique for this
guideline was, "Ensure that the source of each frame is an HTML
file." This guideline was discarded and the technique was incorporated
- Since A.5 was deleted, the rest of section A had to be renumbered.
- The first two techniques of A.7 were combined into one: "Movement
should be avoided when possible, but if it must be used, provide a mechanism to
allow users to freeze motion or updates in applets and scripts or use style
sheets and scripting to create movement. (see also A.10)
- The following technique was added to A.6 (as A.6.3) "Mark up
quotations with the Q and BLOCKQUOTE elements. Do not use them for formatting
effects such as indentation."
- The previous A.6.4 ("Do not use an image map to create a set of
buttons in a form. Instead, use separate buttons or images (accompanied by
alt-text). [Priority 2]") was moved to A.1.5.2 and grouped with the
other techniques on image maps and alt-text.
- The previous A.13.1 ("Until user agents and screen readers are able
to handle text presented side-by-side, all tables that lay out text in
parallel, word-wrapped columns require a linear text alternative (on the
current page or some other). [Priority 1]") was moved to A.12.5 and
became a Priority 2.
- Two appendicies were added. The first lists the guidelines grouped by
priority, the second lists the techniques grouped by priority.
- Many rewordings were made throughout the document to make it easier to
- The introductory titles of each section have become more complete.
- A new term, "transform gracefully," was created and defined to
replace the controversial "fail gracefully."
- A table of contents, abstract and other introductory information (mostly
from the last public draft) have been included.
- The definitions of the priorities are stronger.
- The first three sections (A. Ensure that information is accessible via
different senses, B. Ensure that the information can be displayed on different
technologies, and C. Make sure that your page will be operable with different
devices) were combined into a single section called, "A. Make sure pages
transform gracefully across users, techniques, and situations."
- The previous B.2 ("Use elements and attributes appropriately.")
became A.7. "Indicate structure with structural elements, and control
presentation with presentation elements and style sheets." This new A.7
also includes the techniques from the previous B.1 ("Separate content and
structure from presentation.") since this is one of the three overarching
themes of section A.
- The previous E.1 ("Use only elements or attributes in a W3C HTML
Recommendation (2.0 or higher) and style rules in a W3C CSS
Recommendation.") became C.1 ("Wherever possible, only use
presentation features defined in a W3C final specification.") which now
incorporates the idea of other types of formats used on the Web such as PDF and
Shockwave. It also has a new technique, "5. Avoid deprecated elements
whenever possible. [Priority 2]"
- The following technique (A.8.2) was changed from a questionable priority
1, to a 2. ("Provide a mechanism to allow users to freeze movement or
updating in applets and scripts or use style sheets and scripting to create
movemnt.") This is because we already require that applets and scripts
have alternative text and a description (if needed) as well as an alternative
way of achieving the same function. (if needed and possible). Therefore, when
scripts or applets are not loaded an accessible alternative will be available.
However, it would be very good to make the applet or script directly
accessible. It would be good to make applets and scripts directly accessible.
The majority of our users either do not have the option to load applets or
scripts in the first place, or have not been loading them because they are
generally not accessible, at this point we are pushing for the alternative
presentations rather than the direct access. Thus the Priority 2 rating.
- The previous A.6 and B.4 have been combined into the new A.6.
"Ensure that text and graphics are perceivable and understandable when
viewed without color."
- The previous C.1, now A.10 was extensively reworked to include more
information about techniques.
- A new technique was added to the previous C.3 (now A.13), "For all
form controls with labels, ensure that the label that is either:
- The previous D.2 ("Mark up abbreviations and acronyms
appropriately") has been combined with the previous B.5 ("Changes in
language within text should be identified. (Text presented in another language
should be clearly marked.") to create a new A.9. "Provide
supplemental information needed to pronounce or interpret abbreviated or
- The Good Design Practices from the previous Public Working Draft have
been included as Priority 3's in section C.
- A short list of definitions have been included at the end.
- Links to the techniques document are no longer broken.