W3C

Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.2 Draft for Review

The Accessibility Guidelines Working Group (AG WG) is happy to announce it has published a new draft of the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.2 for wide review.

The structure and content of WCAG 2.2 is the same as 2.1 and 2.0. Version 2.2 will include new accessibility requirements, called “success criteria”.

Background

There were potential success criteria discussed during the development of 2.1 that needed more time or needed other specifications to mature. AG WG has continued to work on those potential success criteria. When a new success criterion was approved by the Working Group along with its supporting Understanding document and at least one Technique, then it was added to the WCAG 2.2 draft for wider review.

In this Working Draft there are nine new success criteria:

The new success criteria are introduced in What’s New in WCAG 2.2 Working Draft.

In addition to the above new success criteria, 2.4.7 Focus Visible has been promoted from Level AA to Level A.

The new success criteria address user needs of people with cognitive or learning disabilities, users of mobile devices, and users of ebooks. Note that success criteria in the Drafts may change or be removed before the final WCAG 2.2 is published.

No new success criteria will be added to WCAG 2.2 from this point. The purpose of this wide review is to collect input on understandability, testability, and utility of the success criteria that have been added.

Note on later versions: The AG WG is currently not planning to publish another version of WCAG 2, that is, not do a WCAG 2.3 — although that might change. We are working on a different accessibility standard with a different structure to succeed WCAG 2. In-progress, un-approved requirements for the standard are available. We will announce when information is more stable on future web accessibility standards.

Your Comments

Public feedback is really important to us. Based on this feedback, the proposed success criteria could be changed. We want to hear from users, authors, tool developers, policy makers, and others about benefits from the new proposed success criteria, as well as how achievable you feel it is to conform to the new success criteria. The main place to comment is on Github, or you can send email to public-agwg-comments@w3.org (comment archive). The Working Group requests that comments be submitted by 18 September 2020.

Schedule

Over the next couple of months, the AG WG will process the input from the public. If comments lead to enough changes, there could be another review draft, then the guidelines will go through finalization stages, described in How WAI Develops Accessibility Standards through the W3C Process. The Working Group hopes to publish the final version of WCAG 2.2 as a “W3C Recommendation” web standard in mid 2021.

To get announcements of updated drafts for review in e-mail, tweets, and RSS, see Get WAI News.

4 thoughts on “Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.2 Draft for Review

  1. Regulatory digital accessibility makes it possible to provide digital tools adapted to the needs of a large audience of Internet users with impairments or disabilities. However, some users with specific needs continue to have navigation difficulties. Indeed, certain types of disorders are not taken into account in the current regulations.

    A large number of impairments or disorders are not covered by normative accessibility. For example, cognitive or motor disorders: current regulations want to propose minimum link spacing, but this need for spacing can vary from one user to another. As another example, for people with Parkinson’s disease the spacing of links provided in this new standard may be insufficient to help them navigate
    Cognitive or motor disorders, which require very specific adaptations, are not really taken into account by the accessibility standards.

    However, some innovative digital accessibility assistance tools that have emerged in recent years offer a large number of features that can complete the existing regulatory offer.
    These two approaches could therefore be complementary and cover many more needs, with one and the same goal: to avoid e-exclusion.

    Could we consider that an external accessibility tool, or even an interface customization tool for the user, could be an integral part of current accessibility standards insofar as it can provide a response to the specific need of an Internet user with features that cannot be found in the current standard?

    1. Hi FACIL’iti team,

      You said:
      > Regulatory digital accessibility makes it possible to provide digital tools adapted to the needs of a large audience of Internet users with impairments or disabilities.

      This is a confusing statement, there isn’t really such a thing as “regulatory digital accessibility”. There is digital accessibility, and for our scope there is web accessibility, for which there are many components: https://www.w3.org/WAI/fundamentals/components/

      WCAG is a standard for web accessibility aimed at people creating web content. It should be considered a useful baseline of accessibility requirements. There are other things content creators can and should do, but they tend to be dependent on the context of the site and are hard to put into a standard intended to be applicable to every website.

      Then there are regulations, usually geographically specific which may reference WCAG, and they may also add requirements for site owners not included in the standard. Particularly if the regulations are sector specific, it might be possible to include more requirements than are included in WCAG.

      Overall, I don’t think it would be appropriate for a standard to recommend a particular product. That isn’t generally how it works, standards are things that products meet.

      In my personal opinion, I don’t think it would even be appropriate to recommend add-on technologies for websites. The best outcomes come from when the constituent parts of the web accessibility ecosystem do what they each need to do and work together. For example, if the website meets the guidelines and the user has the appropriate technology, that will generally be a better experience.

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