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  1. #51
    SitePoint Member
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    Aug 2004
    Perth, Western Australia
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    Coming in (very) late here, but I've just been in a similar discussion on another list. Here's part of what I said there:

    Joe Clark's blog entry on Axxlog talks about the
    way a recent report into the BBC's website praised it as being
    accessible as it offers text-only versions of most pages. Joe briefly
    discusses this and also links to this blog entry on Dive Into Mark
    which explains why this is not so in more detail and also links to
    essays explaining it yet more fully.

    Regarding people not using the text-only versions, the Axxlog entry
    quotes a previous BBC report (that was totally ignored in the current

    "One reason for not selecting the text-only site may have been because
    they were unaware of this facility…. Many disabled people express a
    dislike of separate, text-only sites. There is a concern that the
    text-only site may be out-of-date compared to the main site and it may
    exclude certain information…. [S]ome disabled people regard it as
    disempowering because choices are being made on their behalf that
    result in less information. A frequently-repeated criticism of
    text-only sites is the dislike of 'special' provision, as it is felt
    to be stigmatizing."
    I don't think we should forget there is a range of level of visual impairment, not just total blindness. Providing a text-only version could well deprive those with some or even most sight of a more enriching experience that a standards-compliant page complete with visual elements for those that can view them.

    There are also people with mobility issues etc to whom a text-only version will make little difference without other accessibility measures also being implemented. Web accessibility is not just about totally blind people, though I expect that, as a group, they are the ones most severely effected by web *in*accessibility.

    My 2 cents. :-)

    mate. :-)

  2. #52
    SitePoint Guru wild boar's Avatar
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    Aug 2003
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    back in the america online days, where a 56k modem didn't even exist, I'd say 60 percent or more websites then had text versions of their website. You had the html version, and text version. I believe text versions are out - and now it's html versions and flash versions. Hope this helps


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