Spoken Presentation Task Force Work Statement

The Spoken Presentation Task Force is a task force of the Accessible Platform Architectures Working Group (APA Working Group). It assists this Working Group with the work identified below.


The Spoken Pronunciation Task Force was approved on 10 June 2016 and is now active. The Task Force home page contains information about the operation and resources of the group.


The objective of the Spoken Presentation Task Force is to develop normative specifications and best practices guidance collaborating with other W3C groups as appropriate, to provide for proper pronunciation in HTML content when using text to speech (TTS) synthesis. The Task Force will bring together participants with expertise in accessibility, TTS technology, assistive technology use of TTS, and relevant technologies developed by the W3C in order to develop a workable solution to support accurate and consistent pronunciation of content. The Task Force will:

  • Develop and analyze use cases and requirements;
  • Research existing techniques and develop a Gap Analysis;
  • Evaluate and develop a solution in the context of existing W3C technologies, most probably based on SSML (Speech Synthesis Markup Language);
  • Identify related work inside and outside of W3C;
  • Propose and develop a consistent mechanism to incorporate SSML into HTML using, for example, WAI-ARIA attributes, new attribute(s) for HTML, or an HTML element;
  • Review issues raised against any related specification and propose solutions to issues which have an impact on the chosen approach;
  • Respond to requests and provide expert feedback on accessibility and technical challenges;
  • Build a use case repository to describe different scenarios involving pronunciation issues occurring in various languages;
  • Engage stakeholders including assistive technology and browser vendors, from whom the task force can solicit ongoing feedback;
  • The task force may form sub-teams to carry out work of the task force.

Scope of Work

The Spoken Presentation Task Force will develop:

  1. Gap analysis;
  2. Use cases and requirements document;
  3. A document proposing a technical approach for providing the solution to address the need for accurate pronunciation and presentation of spoken content in various languages.


The SPTF works within the APA Working Group and will focus on achieving a specific goal that will be broadly implementable by browsers, and will work with the Publishing Working Group, Web Platform Working Group, ARIA Working Group, CSS Working Group, and Timed Text Working Group. The Task Force will monitor new issues raised against its approach and related specifications and provide feedback on those impacting accessibility.


Spoken Presentation Task Force communications and discussions are visible to the public. The task force home page details communication mechanisms in use. The task force will:

  • Support synchronous (e.g., teleconferences, face-to-face meetings) and asynchronous (e.g., mailing list discussions, issue trackers, wiki, surveys, etc.) methods of communication;
  • Use the procedures of the APA Working Group Decision Policy to make decisions;
  • Provide updates and feedback to APA Working Group teleconferences, as appropriate. These liaisons are primarily the responsibility of the Spoken Presentation Task Force Facilitators;
  • Maintain information resulting from its activities (deliverables, participants, face-to-face meetings, teleconferences, etc.) on the Spoken Presentation Task Force home page.


Any participant in the APA Working Group may participate in the Spoken Presentation Task Force. Participants should expect to dedicate 3 to 4 hours per week for Spoken Presentation Task Force work, which is considered part of the overall work commitment to the APA Working Group:

  • Remain current on the Spoken Presentation Task Force mailing list and respond to postings in a timely manner;
  • Provide feedback to editors of specifications via email or by filing bugs;
  • Participate in weekly Spoken Presentation Task Force teleconferences, or send regrets to the Spoken Presentation Task Force mailing list.

Participants may also join Spoken Presentation Task Force sub-groups. Sub-groups take on specific assignments for the Spoken Presentation Task Force.

If you are interested in becoming a participant of the Spoken Presentation Task Force or have any questions regarding its work, contact the task force facilitators.

Current Spoken Presentation Task Force participants


Staff contacts from the APA Working Group oversee attention to W3C Process with respect to the chartered requirements of the Working Group. The Facilitators set agenda, lead meetings, determine consensus, and are the primary liaison to the Working Group.

Patent Policy

This Task Force is part of the APA Working Group Charter, which operates under the W3C Patent Policy (5 February 2004 Version). W3C maintains a public list of any patent disclosures made in connection with the deliverables of the APA Working Group.

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