Results of Questionnaire Conformance Scope proposal

The results of this questionnaire are available to anybody.

This questionnaire was open from 2020-06-30 to 2020-07-10.

17 answers have been received.

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  1. New Proposal for Conformance Scope

1. New Proposal for Conformance Scope


Conformance is defined only for Paths. However, a conformance claim may be made to cover one path, a series of paths, or multiple related paths.

Editor's Draft version of Scope (current text that is proposed that we change)

Rationale (from meeting minutes)

  • Minor change to current WCAG 2.x conformance scope
  • Addresses the need for "beyond Web Content"
  • Closer to the real user experience
  • Path level vs. task level. Beginning to end path. Tasks can be within that path.
  • Scales to verticals such as PDFs (i.e reading a PDF and understand a chart)
  • Could include atomic tasks and larger composite tasks.
  • Path for a task, not for claiming individual components


ChoiceAll responders
Yes 7
Yes, with changes in comments 6
No 4


Responder New Proposal for Conformance ScopeComments
Shawn Lauriat Yes, with changes in comments (Later) copy edits so that it matches plain language requirements to make this easier to understand.
(Also later) supplemental documentation that includes examples of how to define a path as a single full page (similar to WCAG 2.x's conformance claim scope), application functionality, and others.
Caidin Riley Yes
Bryan Trogdon Yes
John Foliot No Object to the use of 'only', as web content can exist without a 'path'. This approach will not scale, and will be difficult for content owners to report Conformance to.
Additionally, this TF have already agreed to use the ACT rules format at the atomic level, so Conformance should include both path-based AND atomic rule compliance.
Charles Adams Yes, with changes in comments Peers have suggested changing "only" to something less restrictive.
Sheri Byrne-Haber Yes
Jake Abma No I have not seen any good path, multiple paths to be able to say this should be the only way for a conformance claim.

It might even be so that we do not agree on paths and what that actually means / looks like...

So, how can we decide already it will be the only way?
Martin Jameson Yes
Bruce Bailey Yes, with changes in comments I think we need to define what we mean by "paths"? Also, why is "Paths" capitalized in first sentence, but not the second? It feels like one of these ideas where everyone thinks we agree what is meant, but still it really should be spelled out in the glossary.
Detlev Fischer No Agree with Bruce that "path" is not clear at the moment. For well defined processes, it seems clear enough that a path leads you from a certain point (say, a shopping cart) to an endpoint (purchase completed) but for other less constrained content, I fear that the concept of "path" could be interpreted as "there is one way to get to the end result which is accessible" while others are not, so it reminds me of the back door situation.
"Path" also seems a poor fit for the scoping of sets of pages with no clear process aspect, as you often have in information-oriented sites (say, your typical city, regional or municipality website).
So I am not dead against paths, I just feel it is not a good fit for many sites and in turn scoping scenarios. "Path" should be an optional scoping construct for sequential / and or dynamic content. Even for highly dynamic sites, the concept of page (including states on the page - think of a product page with customer reviews) is still a valid concept that would work better without forcing it into a path model.
Jeremy Sydik Yes
Angela Hooker Yes
Jennison Asuncion Yes, with changes in comments Agree with Shawn's proposed changes.
Frederick Boland Yes, with changes in comments Need to define path
Jeanne F Spellman Yes I would note that we need a definition for Path because "path" in this case does not have a commonly accepted meaning that could be put into plain language.
Judy Brewer No No, because:
- The proposed restriction to paths does not clearly match the situations in the draft version of the conformance scope ("An organization or author who want to make an conformance claim can select a logical sub-section of the site, application, or product.")
- It is possible if not even likely that some content on websites will occur outside of paths or sub-sections of a site, yes the exclusionary approach does not seem to accommodate that likelihood;
- No definition is provided for "path";
- The rationale provided seems to be a rationale for why to allow conformance claims to apply to paths; however, no rationale is provided for why to exclude non-path content of websites.
- As proposed, this proposed conformance scope could have the effect of substantially limiting the percentage of a website to which a conformance claim could apply, making WCAG 3.0 less relevant, or irrelevant to, a substantial portion of a website, and reducing incentives for comprehensive accessibility implementation across a website.
Julia Chen Yes, with changes in comments Not just for paths:

1. Component
2. Page and screens
3. Paths (or user journey or user flow)

More details on responses

  • Shawn Lauriat: last responded on 6, July 2020 at 14:40 (UTC)
  • Caidin Riley: last responded on 6, July 2020 at 14:47 (UTC)
  • Bryan Trogdon: last responded on 6, July 2020 at 14:48 (UTC)
  • John Foliot: last responded on 6, July 2020 at 17:53 (UTC)
  • Charles Adams: last responded on 6, July 2020 at 21:35 (UTC)
  • Sheri Byrne-Haber: last responded on 7, July 2020 at 13:35 (UTC)
  • Jake Abma: last responded on 7, July 2020 at 13:36 (UTC)
  • Martin Jameson: last responded on 7, July 2020 at 14:13 (UTC)
  • Bruce Bailey: last responded on 7, July 2020 at 14:42 (UTC)
  • Detlev Fischer: last responded on 7, July 2020 at 15:02 (UTC)
  • Jeremy Sydik: last responded on 7, July 2020 at 15:56 (UTC)
  • Angela Hooker: last responded on 8, July 2020 at 05:25 (UTC)
  • Jennison Asuncion: last responded on 8, July 2020 at 12:50 (UTC)
  • Frederick Boland: last responded on 9, July 2020 at 14:46 (UTC)
  • Jeanne F Spellman: last responded on 9, July 2020 at 15:10 (UTC)
  • Judy Brewer: last responded on 10, July 2020 at 05:28 (UTC)
  • Julia Chen: last responded on 10, July 2020 at 18:35 (UTC)


The following persons have not answered the questionnaire:

  1. Gregg Vanderheiden
  2. Janina Sajka
  3. Michael Cooper
  4. Shadi Abou-Zahra
  5. Makoto Ueki
  6. Peter Korn
  7. Andrew Kirkpatrick
  8. Wilco Fiers
  9. Alastair Campbell
  10. Léonie Watson
  11. David Sloan
  12. Mary Jo Mueller
  13. John Kirkwood
  14. Matt Garrish
  15. Chris Loiselle
  16. Jan McSorley
  17. John Rochford
  18. Sarah Horton
  19. JaEun Jemma Ku
  20. Kim Dirks
  21. Denis Boudreau
  22. Rachael Bradley Montgomery
  23. Francis Storr
  24. Shari Butler
  25. Aparna Pasi
  26. Tobias Christian Jensen
  27. Ruoxi Ran
  28. Peter Kennaugh
  29. Cybele Sack
  30. Shrirang Sahasrabudhe
  31. Arthur Soroken
  32. David Fazio
  33. Daniel Montalvo
  34. Andrew Somers
  35. Caryn Pagel
  36. Jared Batterman
  37. Todd Libby
  38. Francesco Mariani
  39. Sukriti Chadha
  40. Ela Gorla
  41. Jennifer Strickland
  42. Rain Breaw Michaels
  43. Jaunita George
  44. Shawn Thompson
  45. Joseph Yang

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