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F38: Failure of Success Criterion 1.1.1 due to not marking up decorative images in HTML in a way that allows Assistive technology to ignore them

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This failure relates to:

  • Success Criterion 1.1.1 (Non-text Content)
    • How to Meet 1.1.1 (Non-text Content)
    • Understanding Success Criterion 1.1.1 (Non-text Content)


This describes a failure condition for text alternatives for images that should be ignored by assistive technology (AT). If an image has the attribute role=presentation, it will be ignored by AT. However, if it does not have role=presentation, and if there is no alt attribute at all assistive technologies are not able to ignore the image. For decorative images which need to be ignored by AT, either role=presentation must be used or the alt attribute must be provided and have a null value (i.e., alt="") to avoid a failure of this Success Criterion."


  • Failure Example 1: Decorative images that have no alt attribute and no role attribute


No resources available for this technique.

Related Techniques

(none currently listed)



For any img element that is used for purely decorative content:

  1. Check whether the element has no role attribute or has a role attribute that is not presentation
  2. Check whether the element has no alt attribute or has an alt attribute that is not null

Expected Results

  • If step #1 is true and if step #2 is true, this failure condition applies and content fails the Success Criterion.