WCAG Samurai Errata now finalized

The WCAG Samurai Errata published a final version of their suggested improvements. This is the work of a group of independent accessibility experts formed by Joe Clark to attempt to address shortcomings in the WCAG, a W3C recommendation from 1999. From the Introduction:

The first thing to understand is that you do not have to comply with these errata. The WCAG Samurai errata are an optional addition to WCAG 1, which we use as a base. You start by reading and understanding WCAG 1, then you read these errata as a correction to WCAG 1.

Read the Introduction for an overview and summary of the main points. Then you can get into the details. A few highlights of the recommendations by the Samurai are that you must comply with all Priority 1 and 2 guidelines, but you must not attempt to comply with Priority 3 guidelines. Layout tables, frames, and untagged PDF documents are banned. Video soundtracks must be captioned. Sites must use valid code and correct semantics for content.

There are separate documents for color and PDF.

If you do choose to comply with these guidelines, there is suggested phrasing for inclusion on your website. An example: “Our site is built to comply with WCAG+Samurai.” There is no mention of which tools are capable of making an evaluation such as this.

I’d like to see a standards advocacy group like the Web Standards Project or a Samurai-like group take on one more thing that is a constant concern to me. I use ads and other third party content on my site from sites like Amazon, Google, Flickr, and Yahoo. These third party sources do not provide valid HTML. Pressure on vendors to provide valid HTML would be an important project to improve the web. I know this wasn’t the aim of the WCAG Samurai, I’m just saying . . .

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