Category: wcag

WCAG 2.1 Now A W3C Recommendation

On 5 June 2018, WCAG 2.1 was published with a Recommendation status, which means it’s stable and ready for implementation. The new guidelines help fill gaps in WCAG 2.0 particularly in the areas of mobile, low vision, and cognitive disabilities.

The new guidelines are backwards compatible with 2.0 as the official W3C announcement by Andrew Kirkpatrick and Michael Cooper explains:

All the criteria from WCAG 2.0 are included in WCAG 2.1, so web sites that conform to WCAG 2.1 will also conform to WCAG 2.0.

Learn more in an upcoming A11Y Talks What’s New with WCAG 2.1 with Carie Fisher and Andrew Macpherson, 27 June 2018.

Summary

Here is a quick list of the new criteria:

Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.1 W3C Recommendation 05 June 2018 W3C
W3C page heading for WCAG 2.1

Further Reading

WCAG Improvements

It was such a relief when WCAG 2.0 became a W3C Recommendation back in December of 2008. But in the fast paced world of the web, nothing stays the same for very long. Even WCAG could use many improvements, especially after over three years. (Time sure flies!)

Jared Smith (@Jared_W_Smith) of WebAIM recently wrote an excellent article WCAG Next which explains some of the top issues and suggests how they can be improved. I pretty much agree with all. Here is a summary:

  • Remove the CAPTCHA Exception – should prohibit all CAPTCHA at Level AA.
  • Media Guidelines – a few suggestions here plus a recommendation for restructuring.
  • Contrast at Level A -minimal contrast requirement needed for Level A.
  • Decrease the 200% Text Resizing Requirement -biggest burden of Level AA.
  • Clarify Images of Text -this is subjective.
  • Specify Mechanisms to Bypass Blocks – add techniques such as skip-to, headings, landmark roles, and others.
  • “Can Be Programmatically Determined” -a confusing aspect of page conformance.
  • Require Keyboard Focus Indicators at Level A – “There is no reason why this should not be a Level A requirement.” Totally!
  • Remove Parsing Requirement – no direct benefit and difficult to test for accessibility; possibly move code validation requirement to Level AAA.

Perceivable, Operable, Understandable, and Robust

Joe Dolson recently completed an excellent four part series published on the Practical eCommerce web site. Another great read from Joe,highly recommended. The articles cover the following four fundamental principles of the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0 (WCAG 2):

  1. Is it perceivable?
  2. Is it operable?
  3. Is it understandable?
  4. Is it robust?

Here are the articles:

PS:
Joe was a guest back in 2007 in Podcast: #41: The Definition of Web Accessibility

Five Layers, Questions, Adobe Encourages, Great Basics

The 5 Layers Of Web Accessibility
Great slide deck on Slideshare. In addition to HTML, CSS, and JavaScript, Dirk Ginader adds “CSS for JavaScript” and ARIA.

Is Your Web Site Accessible?
Great questions a web designer and developer should continually ask oneself.

Adobe encourages the European commission to use WCAG 2.0
Boring, but important.

Accessibility Basics
A great beginning-level article from Opera. Topics include:

  • What is accessibility?
  • Designing with accessibility in mind
  • Interoperability requirements
  • Features of an accessible web page
  • Standards for accessibility

IBM interviews Judy Brewer on WCAG 2.0

IBM interviews Judy Brewer in WCAG 2.0 and the future of Web accessibility: Q and A (Part 1).

In the article, Judy explains:

  • The primary differences between WCAG 1.0 and WCAG 2.0.
  • some of the challenges your Working Group faced in developing the new standard.

The article is published under the IBM Human Ability and Accessibility Center, an excellent source of information for computer-related accessibility in general.