With real world implementations WCAG 2.0 steps closer to expected December 2008 publication

Today W3C WAI published WCAG 2.0 as a "W3C Proposed Recommendation". This means that the technical material of WCAG 2.0 is complete and it has been used successfully in real websites. Up next: final publication as a Web standard "W3C Recommendation", which we expect in December!

Over the last few months, the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) Working Group has been going through a process to ensure that WCAG 2.0 can be implemented. Developers and dsigners from around the world gave WCAG 2.0 a "test drive" in their own Web content.

The result: Successful implementations in a wide range of sites including education, commerce, government, and a blog; in languages including Japanese, German, English, and French; and using a wide range of technologies including scripting, multimedia, Flash, and WAI-ARIA. You can get the nitty-gritty details from the Implementation Report.

We learned more about how people use WCAG 2.0 and got additional feedback that resulted in a few changes from the previous publication.

Now that WCAG 2.0 technical material is stable and is proven implementable, there’s one more step: submit WCAG 2.0 Proposed Recommendation to W3C Members for final review and endorsement. That takes us into December.

Over the next few weeks we’ll also be updating existing WCAG materials and providing new materials to help transitioning to WCAG 2.0; for example, a printable version of WCAG 2.0 at a Glance and more WCAG 2.0 presentations.

But you don’t need to wait for any of that. There are a lot of reasons to start implementing WCAG 2.0 right away. See "What are the benefits of using WCAG 2.0?" in the WCAG 2 FAQ.

Note that the best place to start with WCAG 2.0 is not necessarily the technical standard itself. Instead start with:

As always, we welcome suggestions for improving these supporting documents, and we encourage translations. Each document has an e-mail address for comments, which is often in the footer, e.g., "Feedback welcome to wai-eo-editors@w3.org."

Thanks for all the support moving WCAG 2.0 towards completion. We look forward to seeing more websites and web applications meet WCAG 2.0.

6 thoughts on “With real world implementations WCAG 2.0 steps closer to expected December 2008 publication

  1. This marks the beginning of a major outreach effort.

    We now have a set of guidelines and accompanying documents that put Accessibility Standards on a par with other technical standards and enable us to begin trumpeting the virtues of undertaking this on a global scale.

    At the recent Plenary I got the sense that, coupled with the recent UN statement on Disability Rights we are entering an era where the “why” of including accessibility as a fundament of all Web content has been asked/answered and we have the “how” to go with WCAG’s “what”!

    The “when” is NOW.


  2. Great Shawn and many thanks. Like many others I am keenly waiting for the day when Version 2 becomes a Recommendation. Then it will be up to goverments etc to endorse it and the rest of us to work at making sure WCAG 2.0 is successful.

  3. I find the volumes and different locations of documentation for WAG 2.0 overwhelming. Is there an effort to consolidate some of this?

  4. John: Yes, we’re updating the WCAG documentation in an effort to make it all less overwhelming.

    The main technical documents will remain the same, yet we’ll have better guidance on using them. For now, the best place to start is Overview of WCAG 2.0 Documents.

    As always, we welcome input on making WCAG 2.0 material more usable! Let me know if you’d like to be more active in refining or reviewing the documents.

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