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User Agent Accessibility Guidelines Working Group (UAWG) Charter

  1. Mission
  2. Scope
  3. Deliverables
  4. Dependencies
  5. Duration
  6. Success
  7. Communication
  8. Confidentiality
  9. Voting
  10. Participation

Information about how to join the UAWG is available on the Web.

Note. Although this charter is available publicly, some of the links in this document refer to resources that require W3C Member access. This charter is written in accordance with section 4.2.2 of the W3C Process Document.

1. Mission

The mission of the User Agent Accessibility Guidelines Working Group (UAWG) is to produce guidelines for the development of accessible user agents: software that retrieves and renders Web content, including text, graphics, sounds, video, images, etc. In particular, the UAWG seeks to make the User Agent Accessibility Guidelines 1.0 a W3C Recommendation, and to collect initial requirements for a subsequent version of User Agent Accessibility Guidelines.

This mission is complementary to the work of other Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI) groups within the WAI Technical Activity and the WAI International Program Office Activity. The UAWG is part of the WAI Technical Activity.

The UAWG was first chartered in December 1997 (December 1997 charter). The UAWG was rechartered on 5 November 1999 (November 1999 charter, expired 30 April 2000), and then rechartered 5 May 2000 (expired October 2001).

2. Scope

The scope of the UAWG's work under this charter is to:

  1. Make the User Agent Accessibility Guidelines 1.0 a W3C Recommendation;
  2. Develop techniques for implementing the UAAG 1.0 in a range of different types of user agents;
  3. Track related work in other Working Groups, commenting on and integrating it as appropriate;
  4. Evaluate user agents for conformance to the guidelines;
  5. Track and promote implementation of UAAG 1.0 requirements during and after Candidate Recommendation;
  6. Collect initial requirements for a subsequent version of UAAG.

3. Deliverables

The UAWG has been working on the User Agent Accessibility Guidelines (UAAG) 1.0 since its original charter. UAAG 1.0 entered Candidate Recommendation for the second time in September 2001. The Working Group will continue to work on the following deliverables:

  1. The UAAG 1.0, which focuses on the accessibility of mainstream graphical user agents intended for use in conjunction with assistive technologies. The UAAG 1.0 must address cross-disability considerations, be consensus-based, technically sound, and reflect the most current technology. The UAWG intends for the (UAAG) 1.0 to become a W3C Recommendation;
  2. Techniques for (UAAG) 1.0, which provides implementation details for satisfying the requirements of the Guidelines. The UAWG intends for the Techniques document to become a W3C Note at the same time the Guidelines advances to Recommendation status;
  3. An ongoing assessment of implementation of the UAAG 1.0;
  4. A report suggesting the next round of deliverables and direction for the next charter. For instance: a requirements document for additional deliverables, such improved guidance on orientation and navigation features, guidelines for mobile and kiosk technologies, guidelines for accessible scripts and plug-ins, increased support for XML technologies and the W3C DOM, sample code, improved techniques documents, etc.;
  5. Minutes of UAWG meetings.

4. Dependencies

The UAWG should ensure consistency where appropriate between the UAAG 1.0 and other WAI deliverables, including the "Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 1.0", the "Authoring Tool Accessibility Guidelines 1.0," and the "XML Accessibility Guidelines."

WAI Working Groups (e.g., Web Content Accessibility Guidelines Working Group, Authoring Tool Accessibility Guidelines Working Group, and Education and Outreach Working Group) often interact directly. The WAI Coordination Group can help facilitate those discussions.

The Protocols and Formats Working Group (PFWG public page also available) is the primary conduit for describing and resolving dependencies between WAI groups and other W3C Working Groups. Consequently, requirements for dependencies between the UAWG and other W3C Working Group's are primarily channeled through the Protocols and Formats Working Group.

The UAWG will interact with the following non-WAI W3C Working Groups via the Protocols and Formats Working Group:

5. Duration

The current charter has a duration until 1 May 2003. The assumption is that UAAG 1.0 will proceed to Recommendation in the fall of 2002, followed by post-Recommendation support.

6. Success

The success criteria for the UAWG are:

7. Communication

The Working Group will make use of the following communication mechanisms:

8. Confidentiality

The Working Groups proceedings, mailing list archives, charter, and deliverables will all be public.

9. Voting

This charter has been written in accordance with Section 4.1.2: W3C Process for consensus and votes of the 19 July 2001 Process Document and includes no voting procedures beyond what the Process Document requires.

10. Participation

The UAWG welcomes participation from W3C Member organizations, and also invites experts from disability organizations, accessibility researchers, assistive technology developers, government organizations, and others interested in promoting accessibility in Web-based user agents.

10.1 Member and Invited Expert participation

Participants are expected to observe the requirements of the Section 4.2.4 of the Process Document ("Good Standing in a Working Group"). The following is an excerpt from that section:

Participation on an ongoing basis implies a serious commitment to the Working Group charter, including:

  1. attending most meetings of the Working Group.
  2. providing deliverables or drafts of deliverables in a timely fashion.
  3. being familiar with the relevant documents of the Working Group, including minutes of past meetings.
  4. following discussions on relevant mailing list(s).

For this Working Group, the following commitment is expected:

10.2 W3C Team participation

10.3 Intellectual Property Rights (IPR)

W3C promotes an open working environment. Whenever possible, technical decisions should be made unencumbered by intellectual property right (IPR) claims.

This is a Royalty Free Working Group, as described in the 24 January 2002 version of W3C's Current Patent Practice.

Working Group participants disclose patent claims by sending email to <patent-issues@w3.org>; please see Current Patent Practice for more information about disclosures.

If and when W3C institutes a more formal patent policy, the UAWG charter will be revised, following the recommendations of the Patent Policy Working Group, in a manner consistent with the IPR goals of the current charter: that the UAWG produce deliverables that ought to be implementable royalty-free.

10.2 Joining the Working Group

Information about how to join the Working Group is available on the Web.

Jon Gunderson, Division of Rehabilitation - Education Services University of Illinois at Urbana/Champaign, Working Group Chair (jongund@uiuc.edu)
Matt May, Team Contact (mcmay@w3.org)
Judy Brewer, WAI Domain Lead (jbrewer@w3.org)
Last modified: $Date: 2002/06/11 20:18:01 $
$Revision: 1.68 $