EPUB 3 Working Group A11y Telco — Minutes

Date: 2021-11-11

See also the Agenda and the IRC Log


Present: Avneesh Singh, Gregorio Pellegrino, Tzviya Siegman, Wendy Reid, John Foliot, Matthew Chan, Murata Makoto, Bill Kasdorf, Matt Garrish



Chair: Avneesh Singh

Scribe(s): Matthew Chan


1. APA has approved accessibility horizontal review of EPUB 3.3 family of specifications.

Avneesh Singh: https://www.w3.org/2021/11/10-apa-minutes.html.

Avneesh Singh: APA has approved horizontal review of epub 33 spec.

2. Normative references to a specification of metadata properties are needed: #1799.

See github issue epub-specs#1799.

Avneesh Singh: new CG for governance: https://www.w3.org/community/a11y-discov-vocab/.

Avneesh Singh: published vocab: https://www.w3.org/2021/a11y-discov-vocab/latest/.

Matt Garrish: basically this issue is about whether we’re allowed to use Schema references. We’ve created CG to maintain vocab that was in Schema.

Avneesh Singh: GitHub: https://github.com/w3c/a11y-discov-vocab/blob/main/README.md.

Matt Garrish: CG document has been published, and open PR updates the references in our spec and techniques doc.

Matt Garrish: there is an issue open with Schema.org on which we are still waiting for their approval.
… in the meantime we’re holding.

3. a11y and audio: #1302.

Matt Garrish: almost a given that this will happen at this point.

See github issue epub-specs#1302.

Avneesh Singh: issue is about audio hazards, which are underspecified currently.

See github pull request epub-specs#1903.

Avneesh Singh: what should be considered an audio hazard?.

Matt Garrish: we’re referencing here the Schema metadata (which was formerly IMS metadata), so not much we can do.
… lack of standard on when audio constitutes a hazard.
… next step will be to pursue this in the new vocabulary CG.

Avneesh Singh: if we want to put pressure on WAI, would it make more sense to keep this issue in epub 33 wg.

Matt Garrish: we should maybe open an issue in WAI tracker.

Tzviya Siegman: +1 to mgarrish.

Matt Garrish: you sent an email to them earlier this year to put it on their radar, but it may have been forgotten now.

Proposed resolution: Approve PR 1903. (Avneesh Singh)

Matt Garrish: +1.

Wendy Reid: +1.

Matthew Chan: +1.

Gregorio Pellegrino: +1.

Wendy Reid: george: +1.

Murata Makoto: +1.

Resolution #1: Approve PR 1903.

John Foliot: i would recommend that we not take this to a11y guidelines wg, it’ll get lost.
… they are very busy now.
… maybe take this to APA, research questions TF.

Matt Garrish: great! Thank you..

John Foliot: two categories of sound hazards I can think of: 1) auto-start/loud, and 2) specific types of sounds like explosions.
… this sort of thing is perfect for the research questions TF.

Avneesh Singh: APA is also more research oriented.

John Foliot: AG is focused on a11y scoring issue right now. You can log the issue against WCAG3 if you want, but I would not recommend.

George Kerscher: maybe this is something that can go into DaisyKB, that people are aware of volumes, that if there are sudden amplitude jumps that a hazard should be entered into epub metadata.

Matt Garrish: yeah, we can certainly do that. Within our domain..

Avneesh Singh: we will discuss that further via email.
… for now mgarrish please open the issue with APA.
… and we may point AG to this issue again in future.
… and also email WAI group to raise this question.

4. Guidance should be given regarding acceptable algorithms for including page navigation in reflowable EPUB publications that do not have statically paginated: #1801.

See github issue epub-specs#1801.

Avneesh Singh: this issue was already closed. But if any members feel we need to discuss further, we can discuss this now..
… basically there was a request that we provide guidance on page numbers for digital only publications, but in the meantime this work is already being taken on by virtual locators TF.

5. Are we good to go for Candidate recommendation?.

Avneesh Singh: are we okay to go to CR, or does the group need to do more work first?.

Wendy Reid: we talked about this yesterday in chairs call. In terms of a11y we are good. We have approval from APA. We’re just waiting on formal approval from i18n. Big concern now is PING..
… we have an extensive number of issues we have to respond to.
… we’re probably looking at end of dec or jan for going to PR.
… we also haven’t had our TAG review yet.
… I’m not as reviewed about that review (though dauwe or ivan may disagree).

Avneesh Singh: and if we are affected it would be epub 33 affected as a whole, not specifically epub a11y spec.

Wendy Reid: yes, there were questions about DRM, obfuscation, etc. But we’re going to try to address that by finding the right language.

Murata Makoto: will the status of techniques change?.

John Foliot: techniques are never normative.

Matt Garrish: they’ll be a wg note. It doesn’t go through the same series of steps..

Murata Makoto: so we can continue to update it?.

Wendy Reid: it would come down to a WG vote. And if there are significant changes we could even resolve to update the version number. That would come down to the WG too..

Matt Garrish: PING raised issue about information escaping from the epub - i.e. user preferences being extracted.
… but if we’re addressing that in core we don’t need to re-address in epub a11y.

George Kerscher: when we update techniques (e.g. when need arises) what happens when WG is dissolved? Is that then something that is done in maintenance?.

Avneesh Singh: yes, even if epub 33 wg ends, the maintenance group can take on updates to techniques, etc..

Wendy Reid: right, it would be a general epub 3 maintenance group.

John Foliot: i think W3C process says that we could update that document whenever we want, and yes I think we could even do our own versioning, its up to us.

Murata Makoto: JP DAISY proposes new note for a11y for JP publication. Covering things like Ruby, automatic insertion of spaces, restrictions on use of characters to prevent confusion between similar looking ideographic characters, etc..
… will be referred to in JIS standard.
… so we will propose the addition of this note. We will start early next year, with work on the note to be completed around Aug.

Avneesh Singh: we can discuss whether this note is good fit for epub 3 wg (or maybe another document) once we start to see some of the content of the note.
… maybe publishing community group.
… we can discuss after you start on this work next year.
… so should we continue convening these regular calls?.

Matt Garrish: I went through the tracker yesterday and every issue as PR.
… assuming everything gets cleaned up after this call, i don’t see us taking on anything big after this.
… support having calls on an “as needed” basis.

6. Any other business..

Murata Makoto: some members of JP DAISY have questions about rs behaviour/navigation.
… in epubs with notes, do people continue reading all the notes without linking back to the reference in the document?.

Tzviya Siegman: so you mean things like footnotes and endnotes?.

Murata Makoto: yes.

Tzviya Siegman: sounds like a best practices issue.

Matt Garrish: and how RSes handle notes isn’t defined in the first place, so I’m not sure where we’d begin with this.
… maybe the cg could make a list of the various implementations out there, and which are accessible vs not?.

Tzviya Siegman: i think all RS at this point have a back button? So we kind of rely on this when authors don’t embed backlink.

Avneesh Singh: on topics like this I think we should start the discussion in publishing CG.

Murata Makoto: when nav elements contain deep structures, could we have something that lets us go up 2 steps, for example? At present the spec doesn’t say much about such commands.
… will these be up to the implementers? Will we say what is desirable in this regard?.

Tzviya Siegman: good questions, but the answers to your questions are non-normative, right? If we wanted to make something like best practices for RS implementors we want to incubate that in publishing CG first.
… there maybe resistance from RS implementors to document the way they handle these sorts of features, its a differentiators and competitive advantage.

Tzviya Siegman: EPUB 3.3 Reading Systems https://www.w3.org/TR/epub-rs-33/.

John Foliot: “Expected Outcomes”.

Matt Garrish: there are also app based and web based RSes, hard to say how all sorts of RS should behave.

George Kerscher: i’ve seen this problem with navigation in different RS, especially with textbooks. I wonder if in our RS testing we should mark this as a test to add to our test book..
… Thorium lets you navigate by heading.
… the CG is welcome to join us in that discussion.

John Foliot: this reminds me of UA a11y guidelines work (UAAG) that is no longer active.
… rather, you define expected outcomes, and then how UA get to those outcomes is up to them.
… WCAG3 really wants to start address some of this as well, but its tricky because as I say we don’t want to be prescriptive.
… in terms of getting something like this integrated into WCAG3, if this group wanted to work on something like this over the next year that would work for WCAG3’s timing i think.

Avneesh Singh: so MURATA let’s start this discussion in Publishing WG.

Murata Makoto: okay, thank you.

Avneesh Singh: did you get response on the open letter about Ruby a11y?.

Murata Makoto: we’ve received response from MS, Google, Apple, but not from WHAT-WG.

Tzviya Siegman: positive that you at least got responses from the major browsers.

Murata Makoto: we’ve asked questions to JP Google, especially because they are trying to sell their browser for use in JP education system.

Avneesh Singh: I think we can end the call now. We’ll skip the next scheduled call..

Tzviya Siegman: 🍾.

Avneesh Singh: congratulations everyone, and thank you to all!.

George Kerscher: thank you avneeshsingh for your oversight and leadership.

7. Resolutions