-Draft- EOWG Minutes 24 May 2011

[face-to-face meeting page]


  1. W3C website pages on user agents and authoring tools (analysis):
  2. Why Standards Harmonization is Essential to Web Accessibility revision
  3. Promoting ATAG and the bigger picture (see background reading and minutes from 23 May 2011 meeting)


Suzette, Sandi, Jason, Liam, Ian, Sharron, Vicki, Alan, Helle, Shawn, Sylvie(phone), Jeanne(phone,part), Char(phone,afternoon), Judy(phone,part)


<scribe> Scribe: Sharron

Sylvie joined

W3C website pages on user agents and authoring tools (analysis):

Shawn: Let's look at parallel pages first.

[Review structure of W3C main pages w/intro and "bucket topics" drilling down to more detail. Web devices, browsers and authoring tools, etc...brief look at "Accessibility" page]

<IanPouncey> Hi shadi and Sylvie

Shawn: We need to decide what we want on these pages, and how to align the main pages, WAI pages and authopring tool section]

Sylvie, call in the regular main number to participate.

Liam: Purpose of this browsers and authoring tools section is made to hook in a reader, meant to replace what we have and encourage further reading.
... do we have too much introduction before the "buckets"?

Shawn: Maybe since the other pages have not this much intro before we get to the buckets

Sandi: you wrote a rather long but passionate intro. To maintain dynamic, needs the length.

Liam: May be that we need to chop it down, but I am a bit invested and may not be the best to do it.

Jason: Could use headings to provide more structure. But also noted that there was a different tone.

[Some think of it as pass through page. At least bucket pages should be visible above the fold, even if lots more text beneath. Consistency with other pages. ]

Suzette: Thinking about who may be here, I am thinking of first year students. The rhetoric however seems to be to people wiht much more experince.

Discussion: Potential for audience of true beginners? Maybe not since if they drill down there is not much there for them. Would rather publish now and fix later than have nothing for another three months.

Vicki: It is a bit long, two buckets may get missed. Can we lead to an opening paragrpah, link to full article and move the buckets up above the fold?

Discussion: Does it belong somewhere where it will get even more attention. Since purpose is to get them to read the standard, where will it do the most good? How does it render on most pages? Look at the layout on a couple of devices. Discussion of aesthetic, needs to fulfill purpose which is to get people into the bucket. Looking for wordsmithing]

Ian: The two paragraphs "The web usefulness ...combined with "the web is not static.." as a lead. Then the two buckets, then the rest as a follow-on after the buckets.

Jason: Would not put anything beneath the buckets. Take out the text of the leading paragraph after "Tim says..."

Suzette: leave IN "You may indeed be one of those smart people..."

Liam: Saying to lop first paragraph, combine next two, remove superlatives and paranthetical and that will get us to about 3 paragraphs.."

Jeanne: Sounds OK

Liam: How about the text in the buckets?

Shawn: ...add "accessibility standard" rather than simply "the standard is"

Jason: Do you need to specify CMS in the group of authoring tools?

Discussion: This is different from others - is that great, making people pay attention differently or is it jarring, incongruous? Most think it is quite strong, tone down the "crazy" references.
... look at other two pages. Liam will do one more draft of this intro page that will be sent around for last call. Will allow a week of review .

<shawn-projecting> http://www.w3.org/WAI/EO/Drafts/4betaW3org/authoring

<Sylvie> ok

Discussion: Authoring tools examples may need to be given from both part A and part B of the document focus.

Jeanne: what if a low vision user wanted to edit a page in a font size and contrast appropriate to themselves, but wanted to publish in a more commonly used font size and contrast.

Liam: Did we miss any on the list and am I OK calling them IDEs and SDKs?

Group: yes, we are OK with it. Is it appropriate to ask for money here? careful about attribution of donors and how to characterize it. Serious people think it is worth giving us money, here is a list of them, etc

Judy, Shawn's IRC is not working and we'll be there in a minute

Shawn: If all are OK with Authoring Tool page, we can move along to the Browser page discussion

hi Judy, finish your breakfast, we'll wrap up the browser discussion and Shawn asks that you call in in 5 minutes...OK?

Discussion: More difficult since you must point out what browsers do wrong. Possible example may be to point out inconsistency of how alt attributes are displayed when images are not loaded.

Jeanne: We approach it as today, web developers must work hard to implement accessibility and make tool tips accessible - it's more than 40 lines of code. We imagine a great future if browsers did that better.

Discussion: Example 1 in the browsers may not be compelling. No tool tips...so what? If you are referring to context sensitive help rather than alt-text for images, it seems more important and more convincing. You can code around it, but should not have to. What about the inconsistencies among browsers as a more compelling argument?

<shawn-projecting> jufy - see above. i'll text you

Discussion: Does ATAG really address that, may not. Does not. So add the explanation that the reference is to context sensitive help and send that draft ? Will give a week of review

Standards HarmonizaTION dOCUMENT

<shawn-projecting> http://www.w3.org/WAI/EO/Drafts/standards/standards_harmon.html

<shawn-projecting> Judy - we're ready

<shawn-projecting> Judy - we have internet access so if you upload with fixed CSS it would help. thanks

Shawn: Looking at replacing the Executive Summary (the only section that has been rewritten). Rest of the page is the old version, don't look at those paragraphs.


<Sylvie> May I already ask a question about the goal of executive summary?

Judy: Editor was approaching as a first exposure to web accessibility. I am interested in overall reaction and Sylvie has a question about the goal.

<shawn-projecting> visual description: suzette nods head in agreement

Sylvie: My question is what is the purpose of this document. When I read it, I understand problems and why it is needed, and I see examples, I see something must be done, but where are the solutions to solve these problems? Only see example of alt-text. They see again, it is only about the blind, not that important.

Judy: About the examples, we will swap that out I had not noticed the examples that are single disability ones. I can make sure the editor understands that must change. The intention is that in the last paragraph the recommendations to policy makers will lead to a section in the paper itself that will give more detail. Is it OK that the lead in to the
... solution is OK at the end or should it come sooner?

<Zakim> shawn-projecting, you wanted to suggest maybe introduce the outcomes, actions in an exectuive summary paragrpah of the executive summary

Sylvie: Is OK for the end but need to know it is there, now it does not come through.

Shawn: The Exec Summary is too long, needs a summary paragraph itself.

Sandi: Agree, it is much too long. Read for quite some time before you know what you will achieve, how you will progress.

Liam: Just reading the analysis, and the Obj, Goals and Purpose, if this is to be persuasive, it has none of that feel. it reads more like a document that you give to someone who is already convinced. My understanding of the purpose is to convince - this does not do that.

Judy: Yes it should not be this long. I completely agree with the comments about length. Am trying to figure out how to help the editor fix it. The sub bullets that help show the shape of the issues contain redundancies and can be much shorter and to the point. Can they be retained in a more terse form? or should they be omitted and integrated into the
... following paragraphs?

Liam: Is this an informative essay piece? or an argument? If the latter, it can be short as harmonization is good, fragmentation is bad. Missing the fundamentals of persuasive writing.

Sandi: My opinion is that there is a level of detail that is not helpful. If it is a call to action, it needs to be a different document altogether. What is the desired outcome of the document?

Sylvie: Yes, I agree that this paragraph is too long, we can delete bullets. For each part of the bulleted items, link out to more actions, more tools, more information to help understand the topic.

Suzette: I was looking for the solution in amongst the discussion of problems. Preceding the solution is all the problems, then one brief bit on solution, and then further challenges. I looked for solutions and got discouraged.

Vicki: The tone is quite negative, we should have more about the solutins and they will be beneficial.

<Sylvie> +1 for more positive, not discouraging

Judy: This is very helpful. To explain more about the intent of the problem statements - the first about what fragmentation does in creating problems, the second section trying to address how to make it work and what are current barriers.
... it has been done clearly yet but we have a good route for turning it into a more positive statement. But back to the fragmentation problem, we need to let people know that there are problems but would welcome suggestions for how to recognize that and yet convey a positive message.
... do we have specific suggestions for how this can be reworked or removed? or other ways to share the problems without such negativity.

<Sylvie> no i was not deleted from the previous one

Sylvie: Hbj: The first bullet about Web accessibility is broad, complex makes you think "OMG, I can't deal with this, too difficult..." rather than yep, this is something we should go and do.

<Zakim> hbj, you wanted to discuss Web accessibility is a broad

Liam: Who gets this paper? Someone who already beleives or someone who must be convinced?

Judy: From one perspective it is a policy maker who may need to be persuaded. More likely however are the indirect audiences, advocates, someone w/in industry setting who needs the talking points.

Liam: It is a doucment meant to persuade or to help an advocate persuade someone. What authrity has the speaker. Missing a strong simple ethical argument. Why is means you are smart, can change the world. We point at Point A (the web is a good thing) then build, all should participate, if so we need tech infrastructure to make that happen, and
... in the end it is better to have a low number of strong arguments rather than a string of weaker ones.

Judy: Just to come back to the argument flow...one of the challenges with working on any EO document is how it fits with the others that already exist. We could structure it along the path you suggest, but will it be redundant to other arguments?

Liam: I am not suggesting that we remove the factual content only that it be reduced. Not that the argument flow I suggested is necessarily the best, just that there must be an argument that builds and becomes self-evident.

Sandi: It is an overarching document that brings together everything that we are working on. The conceptual thread must be consistent and this document is a place to make the big all embracing argument.

Liam: I was not being that general, only to say if the purpose of this is to convince, it needs to be more persuasive.

Ian: I was put off by the jargon. We lead from WCAG
... begins talking about normative layers without explaining what they are. Would like to see something much much simpler.

Judy: In discussing this with the editor, I agree that there are jargony elements that can be removed. He was struggling with the message to not worry about the localization being solved by WCAG becasue we have not explained that, even though it is the crux of our argument for universality. It may be one of the most compelling arguments but may not be

coming clearly through. Would like suggestions for how to solve it.

Ian: At the end, this is so powerful, we have thought of it.

Sharron: Redundancy is a good rhetorical trick, should not worry if the save-the-web message is redundant to other documents.

Sandi: If the audience is policy makers, must recognize that they are different among governemtn, organizations, etc

Judy: Yes, I agree that they are different and would make the primary audience the government policy makers.
... any additional high level comments?

Group: Not on this draft due to the disconnect

Judy: Thanks we can reconvene on Friday

<Sylvie> is someone there?

<hbj> quit

<IanPouncey> We are back on the conf call

Mike (/) of BBC research spoke after lunch, highlighting efforts at BBC for accessibility. Looked at iPhone plugging into set top box,users on demand, vertical integration, etc. What is relation to UAAG? How does this work relate to all standards. TVs are Internet connected, will we have to take accessibility hit?

scribe: personal device delivery of captions, audio description. Web/TV are convering

Mike Evans from BBC

Group: Fascinating information, quite related to UAAG, opportunity for follow-up.

ATAG Promotion and the bigger picture

Shawn: Now that we have slept on it a bit, do we want to reconfigure our approach? We don't want to do a ot of promoting ATAG separately from the full suite of guidelines.

Sandi: The trilogy

Shawn: Yes and how WAI-ARIA fits in. So I am not proposing that approach just reminding the group what we considered. What do we think about that? How much to focus on the separate units and how much on the trilogy?

Liam: I think the promotion of the trilogy is very useful. There is the STFF, there is READING the stuff and there is WRITING the stuff and we will tell you how it all fits together.

Sandi: I think showing how they all fit and presenting the web as a whole will make it all more easy to understand. Also shows that there are areas of responsibility.

Shawn: We have some historical materials around that, the diagram, etc. Given that ATAG and UAAG announcements are coming soon, do we need to prepare for that?
... we can spend time wondering what is the messaging if A is primary message, and what if it were B as primary message.

Jeanne: Part A is making the tool usable and accessible by and for people with disabilities. Part B is making the output accessible.

Shawn: So if focus of overview update is Part A, we have the argument that now that you understand how important it is to be able to read the web, ATAG is here to tell you how important it is to help them writie it impossible. Turning the web into a read/write platform.

(above was Liam, not Shawn)

Ian: This ATAG part takes it out of the court of professionals and into the court of all people.

Shawn: What is that personality?

Jeanne: that is the real revolutionary part

Shawn: what messages will click wiht those people?

<IanPouncey> Liam: You don't need to be smart, you can either be smart of good, if you are one of these you will be implementing ATAG.

<IanPouncey> Shawn: We've tried teeth, we've tried fluffy, neither worked, we might want to try flying a flag.

<IanPouncey> *Sharron sings....*

<IanPouncey> Char: Target decision makers in large tool vendors, making them think about their bottom line.

<IanPouncey> jeanne: If you make it so more people can use your tool you will increase your bottom line through direct revenue as well as reach (advertising for wordpress).

<IanPouncey> jeanne: If the GSA say they want ATAG it will influence vendors to produce ATAG compliant tools

Char: If you have a tool that sucks but is accessible, government must buy the accessible one

<IanPouncey> |_

Sandi: Explore an approach about how people respond to competition, wanting to be the best amongst developers. Also for a company to want to be the best, first,

Shawn: What is key message for companies if Part B is the focus?

Ian: Don't have to hire people like me?

Liam: Foolproof accessible content with no need for professionals

Suzette: Want to move from 3% meeting guidelines to more than 50%

Ian: It is about making it foolproof

Suzette: Developers will still be needed to set up the central framework and then be maintained accessibly by secretaries, admins, etc

Ian: may be an approach through developers along those lines as well.
... if developers have choice of equitable CMS products and one did not ruin their product, they would seriously favor that.
... many clients want to simply be told what tool to buy

Jason: The vendors call me every day

Shawn: Then we need to get to you so you ask for their ATAG compliance statement

Liam: It must be a big thing among IT or no one will hear of it

Char: repeats IRC comment above

Ian: Is that what ATAG helps you do though?

Char: When you can show that some tools throw file names in as alt text, is that helpful

Shawn: But what Sandi is saying we need the core messaging so that people like Char can take this to her audience and write the article specific to her group

Liam: But telling them they can meet WCAG more easily is big and amkes it less scary...but is a much less sexy message

Helle: In Denmark we have implementers who provide different CMS who do not sell directly through the vendors but must go through one of their implementers.
... part of the requirements are to check against ATAG.
... the procurers are not interested, don't show up for the accessibility meetings, madate 376 issues, etc

Liam: to interest them, perhaps we must push it as a quality mark?

Helle: Yes cause they are good about energy and the environment

Jeanne: You need the real potential of part B is truly making a dramatic difference to the overall accessibility of the web. Takes away the excuse of "the accessibility stuff is hard, I don't know how." It allows accessibility for people who have NO IDEA about accessibility issues.
... Flickr, social media, etc

Shawn: If I have an OK tool as opposed to one that fully implements ATAG, how much better a web site will be spit out? Jeanne can you quantify what percentage of SCs are addressed and solved?

Jeanne: I have never looked at it that way, so I can not give you a number.

Sandi: authoring tool is a piece of software and still requires instruction and/or learning curve. Training and knowledge are still required.

Shawn: How much does ATAG help?
... how much more accessible will it be?

Jason: Imagine using Wordpress. It will require your put headings in, in the right order. Alt tags are too complex and there are many dangers that aren't able to address

Liam: That seems too specific. Perhaps a better test is would there be a noticeable improvement in the user experience? So yes, let's take Wordpress. Would the user experince be noticably imporved?

Shawn: I want to be convinced, how much better will it be?

Liam: We can't know until we have accessible CMS.

Jeanne: A big thing will be that we will have semnatic code.
... a number of criteria will be met simply by having semantic code.

Liam: Two good examples - headings and form lables.
... if you picked an authoring tool that has met or is close to meeting ATAG, can we see if there is a difference between a site made with a non-ATAG vs a close to ATAG compliant site?

Sandi: Many open source tools are more easily customizable. Are we talking about requiring commercial tools to meet ATAG out of the box?

Suzette: example sof things that can go wrong. by default an open source product shows page sizes in pixels. would have to know more about accessibility just to use it.

Liam: It's not locked down, it defaults to accessible option.

<jeanne> ATAG also gives guidance and includes checking and repair.

Char: Must be careful with rules, not each image needs an alt tag.

Ian: On the A vs B question is that it is a fine balance because it is the most overlooked. The question of whether content should be accessible is unquestioned. More often people are locked out and no one advocates for their right to be writing as well.

Sandi: Core content will be for everyone, messaging will be specific.

Shawn: We still have a primary message.

<IanPouncey> Sharon: There is no doubt that A must lead to B. It is not enough to consume content, there is also the right to write content. People say that it is great to be able to read content, but what they really want to do is to have a voice and be able to produce. ATAG gives a voice to the voiceless.

<IanPouncey> Sharron is a revolutionary.

jeanne: Maybe she shook my beleif that B is more important.

Sandi: Sometimes I forget that I am blind. When I think of the fact that it is a fundamental right to participate and have the human right to free speech and equal participation.

Shawn: The W3C is going to be messaging more about access to the web is a human right - full participation by all.
... and we have some of that visioning in the other documents.

Ian: Both A and B appeal to the human side but A is overlooked.

<jeanne> jeanne wants to add to our Part A benefits that it improves access to employment.

Shawn: But what about people who don't care about the human side, how do you get the message to them?

Liam: You are talking to them in WCAG, ATAG makes it cheaper and easier. Everyone has a right to write the web as well as read it.
... those who don't accept people's rights are the enemy.

Ian: You have the bottom line folk and can give them the procurement ease, freedom from big legal risk, employment law compliance, etc

Alan: The writing part is more fashionable now. many are actually more interested in being a user in the user generated content , more facility on devices, the message can be more of-the-moment.

Ian: Also that for the social media side of it.

Liam: Do you want 100% of your possible users?

Ian: Would you like 20% more users?

Liam: We seem to be lacking the definite statistics.

Alan: BBC could do a brillian plant, turn off accomodations for a week and test the outcomes.

Ian: Awful lot of web content already promotes that. In the meantime, do we have consensus about direction?

Sandi: Where I think about creating the content and consuming the content. There is a difference between the passive idea of inclusion vs the active idea of participation

Shawn: It must be one document, we seem to be agreeing around A

Suzette: Still B as far as I can understand it

Ian: Not just one or the other...lead with A but acknowledge importance of B

Shawn: But yesterday we said one or the other, the message will be muddy if we try to do both.

Jason: Both are empowering

Sandi: There will alsways be a need to educate around the tools.

<vicki77> - Vicki$

<IanPouncey> Vicki: There are revolutionary things going to happen, which is going to open opportunities for PWD, and it means that ATAG can try to ensure that everyone can participate.

<IanPouncey> Liam: We phrase it as 'obviously you are building tools that produces accessible content, because that's what all the cool kids are doing, but have you thought about making the tools accessible'

<IanPouncey> Sharron: It has worked before, flattering vendors that are doing a great job.

<sharronrush> Suzette: Need to publish more in scholarly journals. Research needs to be recognized. perr review

<sharronrush> Shawn: The irony is that our papers are more peer reviewed than most.

<sharronrush> ...tangent to be followed later.

<sharronrush> Suzette: You are providing a framework for others to work within

<sharronrush> Shawn: I propose that we wrap up. Look a bit at what we have for componenets, see how it fits...

<sharronrush> Sandi: I am brain dead

<sharronrush> Jason:

<sharronrush> Jason: I have felt worse having spent whole days ...

<sharronrush> Suzette: I am ready to consider the components today and think the model is extremely useful that it is not all contained within WCAG and helps explain why it sometimes feels so difficult.

<sharronrush> jeanne, we are wrapping but you are welcome to call

<sharronrush> Liam: Does WAI-ARIA need to exist once HTML5 is final?

<sharronrush> Shawn: It is a question / tanget!

<sharronrush> Liam: In a components diagram, where does HTML fir? WAI-ARIA?

<sharronrush> Shawn: Many don't recognize that

<sharronrush> Jason: If I had first seen this several years ago, it would have helped tremendously. If this was at the very top level, it will help those who are new to it.

<sharronrush> Shawn: Actively cross out developers and recognize that we are all providing content to the web

<sharronrush> Liam: That's what ATAG does for you. I want to feel that the user sits on the reading end or the writing end, so it supports the idea that everyone should be writing the web.

<sharronrush> Suzette: the reader, but not just the reader. You are no longer just the consumer, you are also the writer.

<sharronrush> Liam: yes the paradigm shift is profound

<sharronrush> Suzette: and would make a great academic paper.

<sharronrush> Shawn: it's a wavy line that goes through all of these areas

<sharronrush> Sandi: When I try to explain, it is a hard concept. To simplify, WCAG is for content, UUAG for browsers and AT, and ATAG for authoring tools.

<sharronrush> Sharron: If we are thinking of developing ATAG materials in relation to the whole, we must be mindful of it.

<sharronrush> Sandi: Have always thought of interoperability and interdependncnce and inter responsibility.

<sharronrush> ..."Let's play nice with standards"

<sharronrush> Suzette: Had used the word fragmentation earlier on and we need everyone who is working on their little parts to understand how they work together.

<sharronrush> Liam: Yes but also important to let people have thier part that the work in and feel ownership. Just to realize that when we all are aware of the same rules, it works together well.

<sharronrush> Sandi: Someone says "all that matters is what the browser makers choose to implement.." kind of freaked me out. Who holds the power here?

<sharronrush> ...who are we trying to influence?

<sharronrush> ...large social media? search engines? CMS? LMS?

<sharronrush> Shawn: all and none. everyone.

<sharronrush> Liam: The way we choose imagery around an issue influences how people think about it. This is our opportunity to present a new way of understanding participants in the web. This is model that perpetuates the idea that there are people who write it and people who read it.

<sharronrush> Shawn: Yes we were aware of that even then.

<sharronrush> Liam: If we have a philosophical position, then we should be using metaphors and imagery that supports it.

<sharronrush> ...if we agree where we are standing, we will know how to move forward.

<sharronrush> Sandi: It's been amazing, filled my brain with great ideas but feeling intense need to process.

<sharronrush> Jason: Fascinating introduction to the group. The whole components thing resonates strongly with me and I think it the glue that holds it all together. On ATAG, moving slightly toward A.

<sharronrush> Liam: Enjoyed it immensley, wonder about the cans of worms we opened, enjoyed ranting with Ian about the state of junior web developers and developed this curriculum for training (handing to Suzette) , and great to develop tangents.

<sharronrush> Alan: Changed my ideas around ATAG, change in usage patterns that make it important since not coupled with change in power which is still concentrated in too few hands.

<sharronrush> Helle: always nice to be in this group, watching my peers changing over time. We have changed our approach since early on. We are now moving in a better direction. All these years of work and still 85% of people I tlak to, who use the web all the time and still know nothing about the W3C. Maybe that's where HTML comes from, and perhaps a few know about WC

<sharronrush> ...those who do, think of it as difficult. Hoping that with this work it will be easier for people to grab it and use it.

<sharronrush> Ian: Enjoyed it, quite productive. Did about a month's worth of work. End of ideas about ATAG have changed from what I expected. if we can actually write this - it is a harder job in many ways than it was before - it will change the way people will use and understand the standards and the web itself.

<sharronrush> Shawn: Thanks to everyone for coming and participating, thanks to the BBC for hosting.

<sharronrush> Char: Sorry just couldn't be here more, great work, looking forward to what we have going on and what comes next.

<sharronrush> Jeanne: The meeting brought me back to why I do this work. I have been bogged down in the minutuia of editing, phrases and you have been inspiring and helped me to remember why I do this work.

<sharronrush> Helle: Nice to be in Europe too

<sharronrush> Sandi: Liam has written the lovely browser and authoring tools pieces, where do we go next? who will do what?

<sharronrush> Shawn: I had hoped to talk about where the W3C stuff fit with the ATAG overview etc.

Summary of Action Items

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