[BCAB] SUPREME COURT CASE

Agent Orange agentorange at talktalk.net
Thu Oct 10 18:47:49 BST 2019


And then one could look at IT developments from the inside of public and
private organisations both large and small, which is a different story
again.  Central government departments might be doing a good job of
producing accessible outward facing websites, but many are doing a poor job
of providing their own employees with accessible IT platforms, intranets,
softphone systems and the rest.  Ditto large corporates.  I'm not saying
that there aren't some good employee experiences, but there are certainly
too many bad ones still.

Phil


-----Original Message-----
From: Steve Green [mailto:steve.green at testpartners.co.uk] 
Sent: 10 October 2019 18:18
To: BCAB Discussion List
Subject: Re: [BCAB] SUPREME COURT CASE

To answer that, you need to bear in mind that there isn't just one software
development market. There are at least three distinct markets that behave
differently.

To their credit, central government departments are fully on board with
accessible design and the message is getting through to the rest of the
public sector. This is almost entirely driven by the Government Digital
Service (GDS), who define the design, development and testing standards for
the public sector. Also, the European Accessibility Directive came into
force last year, which mandates that all public sector websites and mobile
apps must meet WCAG 2.1 level AA. Of course some old websites don't meet
this requirement but most new ones come very close.

The next market is the corporates, such as banks and supermarkets. They were
early adopters of accessibility, partly to repair their perception as being
heartless capitalist bastards, which of course they are. They also realised
it would help them win more customers and potentially reduce support costs.
Also, corporations usually have a compliance team that make sure they meet
their legal obligations. Much as we like to give them a kicking, these
companies mostly do a reasonable job of accessibility.

Finally, there's everyone else, and this is where the problem lies. They are
largely ignorant of their legal obligations or correctly assume no one is
going to sue them because they are too small to bother with. They don't
believe that an accessible website will bring them any benefits, and that
may well be true for a small company. They don't care about public relations
or corporate social responsibility. In short, we can't use any of the levers
that we use with larger organisations.

And then there are the developers themselves. A tiny number of them find
accessibility interesting. The other 99.99% find it a hindrance that
prevents them from using their favourite development tools and forces them
to do hand coded fixes that are horribly inefficient. They could build an
entire website in the time it takes to do a handful of accessibility fixes.
 
Steve


-----Original Message-----
From: goshawk on horseback <goshawk_on_horseback at fastmail.co.uk> 
Sent: 10 October 2019 17:04
To: BCAB Discussion List <bcab at lists.bcab.org.uk>
Subject: Re: [BCAB] SUPREME COURT CASE
Importance: High

if this is the case, then shouldn't we be trying to come up with a way of
putting the break on worsening accessibility, rather than just letting it
spiral out of control?

Simon


----- Original Message -----
From: "Steve Green" <steve.green at testpartners.co.uk>
To: "BCAB Discussion List" <bcab at lists.bcab.org.uk>
Sent: Thursday, October 10, 2019 4:10 PM
Subject: Re: [BCAB] SUPREME COURT CASE


But this is also the problem. The most popular JavaScript frameworks allow 
developers to work at levels of efficiency we could not dream of ten years 
ago, but they produce terrible inaccessible code and they do not contain 
tools to validate it.

Moreover, the current generation of developers cannot hand write code like 
we used to because they never learned to do so. The tools do it all for 
them. Older people like me can look at the code and not only see the 
accessibility issues but we can see how to fix them. The youngsters can't do

any of that.

This is why website accessibility has been getting worse since about 2006 
and it will continue to get worse.

Steve


-----Original Message-----
From: George Bell <george at techno-vision.co.uk>
Sent: 10 October 2019 14:18
To: BCAB Discussion List <bcab at lists.bcab.org.uk>
Subject: Re: [BCAB] SUPREME COURT CASE

Hi Mike,

I guess I am not making myself clear here.

Many developers came up the old fashioned way, hand coding HTML, and even to

this day, still do.  It seems many of their employers are simply not aware 
that the IT world has entered the 21st Century, and there are now many tools

which make the whole process not only easier and quicker, but moreover 
include a multiplicity of validators.

Personally, I've selected the whole lot, and not regretted it.

George

-----Original Message-----
From: Mike Townsend via Bcab <bcab at lists.bcab.org.uk>
Sent: 10 October 2019 13:41
To: 'BCAB Discussion List' <bcab at lists.bcab.org.uk>
Cc: Mike Townsend <miketownsend at talk21.com>
Subject: Re: [BCAB] SUPREME COURT CASE

Hi George
I tend to agree with you. It is great that you use software to assist in the

process.
However, there are built in features that can assist in the development 
process. Unfortunately,they are turned off by default.
If we say that providing basic accessibility involves hours of study, 
expensive software, and top price usablility training, then that is not 
going to get us many accessible sites unless it is all made compulsory.
I suggest we need to guide companies in to readily usable features that will

assist them in designing accessibility right from the start.
Thanks.
Mike

-----Original Message-----
From: George Bell <george at techno-vision.co.uk>
Sent: 10 October 2019 09:53
To: BCAB Discussion List <bcab at lists.bcab.org.uk>
Subject: Re: [BCAB] SUPREME COURT CASE

Hi Steve,

Well said!

Some might call it cheating, but I use a software product called "Flare"
produced by Madcap Software. (https://www.madcapsoftware.com/)

While purchased primarily to develop and build Help files for software, 
Flare is what's called a "Single-source" product.  Consequently we can 
produce, from the content, alternative outputs such as HTML5 to the latest 
standard, Word, PDF, as well as even for mobile phone access.

One of the modules Flare contains is "Analysis", and a particular report 
concerns "Accessibility".  Hence for example, it tells me in a few seconds 
that a current project has 4 images with no Alt Text.  All I have to do, it 
click on the offending file(s) and it opens when I can then rectify the 
problem.

For a small company like ours, some may say it's like using a sledge hammer 
to crack a nut.  My view is that it has saved me countless hours of trying 
to use a pair of binoculars without taking both lense caps.

George

-----Original Message-----
From: Steve Green <steve.green at testpartners.co.uk>
Sent: 10 October 2019 00:18
To: BCAB Discussion List <bcab at lists.bcab.org.uk>
Subject: Re: [BCAB] SUPREME COURT CASE

There is blame at all levels in these companies. Senior management either 
don't know their obligations or don't care. Senior technical staff don't 
select the right people or implement the right practices and policies. The 
skill of the average developer is appallingly low, and 50% of developers are

below average!

It's truly shocking that 20 years after WCAG was first published, most 
developers don't have the faintest idea what it says, and they have no idea 
how to build accessible websites.

However, I don't agree with some people in this forum insofar as it actually

is difficult and costly to build highly accessible websites. It takes 
thousands of hours of study to become proficient, and someone has to pay for

that. You need more hardware and software, including licenses for all the 
assistive technologies. Your choice of development platform is severely 
limited and you won't be able to use technologies that everyone else uses to

boost productivity. You need to spend a whole lot more on technical testing 
and user testing, which is expensive and delays the release of your 
software. Even a short delay can be a huge risk in a competitive market.

And as technologies evolve, you have to keep learning and keep buying new 
hardware and software, so it's a continuous addition to your overheads. None

of this is an excuse not to do it, but please don't pretend it's easy or 
cheap because it isn't.

Steve


-----Original Message-----
From: George Bell <george at techno-vision.co.uk>
Sent: 09 October 2019 21:11
To: BCAB Discussion List <bcab at lists.bcab.org.uk>
Subject: Re: [BCAB] SUPREME COURT CASE

Having arrived to find our workshop flooded this morning, I'm just in the 
right mood to  want to slam a brick though our local Dominos, never mind 
never going there again for a pizza. At least boycotting them won't get me 
locked up!

It is total BS that it is both difficult and costly to make web pages 
accessible.

Moreover, what good does it do them, when those who use adaptive technology 
through disability of one kind of the other, are unable to make purchases.
I suppose some dumb, stupid, self-opinionated, idiot in administration, paid

a 6 figure salary, is to blame.

I have even had questions from so called "dedicated web developers" who do 
not even know how to label something as simple as a button.

It's little wonder their prices are so high when they can afford to pay 
lawyer's rates rather than make an effort to attract more sales.

George

-----Original Message-----
From: Steve Green <steve.green at testpartners.co.uk>
Sent: 09 October 2019 18:40
To: BCAB Discussion List <bcab at lists.bcab.org.uk>
Subject: Re: [BCAB] SUPREME COURT CASE

Dominos are doing exactly the same as Target did 15 years ago. It would be 
much cheaper for them to fix the website than to try to defend an insanely 
expensive law suit, but I believe their objective is to prevent a legal 
precedent from being set. As such, it would not surprise me at all if other 
large corporations are helping to fund the law suit because they will all be

in trouble if the precedent is set.

Barry said that Dominoes challenge is a call for definitive and clear 
standards on digital accessibility that can only be good for equal access.
Unfortunately, that will never happen because the relevant factors vary so 
much. Some assistive technologies are much better than others and some 
people are much more proficient at using them. The severity of people's 
disabilities varies greatly too. And web technologies are now so insanely 
complex that the accessibility guidelines have had to become equally 
complex.

The only way we could get definitive and clear standards on digital 
accessibility is if we wind the clock back 25 years to when everything was a

whole lot simpler. Everything would be far more equal, but no one would be 
better off.

Steve Green
Managing Director
Test Partners Ltd


-----Original Message-----
From: goshawk on horseback <goshawk_on_horseback at fastmail.co.uk>
Sent: 09 October 2019 17:16
To: BCAB Discussion List <bcab at lists.bcab.org.uk>
Subject: Re: [BCAB] SUPREME COURT CASE
Importance: High

trouble is, that not everyone is a top tech user, fully familiar with every 
single navigation key or gesture, and every mode of navigation or reading.
to put it in the context of your message, the person able to use whatever 
site/app/service in question, may be one of those, able to use that skill to

access it.
whereas the other person who is not able to access it, may well be ok with 
using tech, but doesn't quite have that super high skill level.
things need to be accessible in general, not just to those elite techies.

Simon


----- Original Message -----
From: "Steve Nutt" <steve at comproom.co.uk>
To: "'BCAB Discussion List'" <bcab at lists.bcab.org.uk>
Sent: Wednesday, October 09, 2019 2:09 PM
Subject: Re: [BCAB] SUPREME COURT CASE


Problem is, that accessibility and usability are two different things.  What

if that guy couldn't access it, but someone else could?  Is it accessible?
To him, no, but it doesn't mean it's not accessible, period.

It has to be proven conclusively that it really isn't accessible.

All the best

Steve

-----Original Message-----
From: Eleanor Martha Burke <eleanormarthaburke at gmail.com>
Sent: 09 October 2019 13:54
To: BCAB Discussion List <bcab at lists.bcab.org.uk>
Subject: Re: [BCAB] SUPREME COURT CASE

do you not think Barry that disabled people have the right to have equal 
access? if we can't get it then we have to use the law.

http://www.justgiving.com/Eleanor-Burke-Aniridia

> On 9 Oct 2019, at 12:34, Barry Hill <barry.hill3 at sky.com> wrote:
>
> I'm glad that it was not heard by the Supreme Court, but I can
> understand Dominoes stance.  There are lorry loads of ambulance-chaser
> style lawyers popping up across America just to encourage disabled
> people to sue companies who might be breaking the law out of ignorance
> of what is specifically needed to make an app or website accessible.
> They are calling for a standard that organisations can use.  Oh, and
> it's not over yet.  Dominoes are still going to fight it in lower courts.
Still, I doubt they will win.
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Richard Godfrey-McKay via Bcab <bcab at lists.bcab.org.uk>
> Sent: Tuesday, October 8, 2019 12:24 PM
> To: Members <bcab at lists.bcab.org.uk>
> Cc: lists.godfrey-mckay at virginmedia.com; 'Cindy Godfrey-McKay'
> <cindy at godfrey-mckay.co.uk>
> Subject: [BCAB] SUPREME COURT CASE
>
>
>
> HI,
>
> Thought some might find this of interest and encouraging!
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
> Big Win for Digital Accessibility!
>
>
>
>
>
> On October 7, 2019 the United States Supreme Court rejected Domino's
> request that the court take up the issue of website and mobile
> accessibility.  This is great news for all who care about digital
> inclusion and the rights of disabled people to fully participate in
> the
digital world.
>
>
> <https://lflegal.us13.list-manage.com/track/click?u=c8f001aa20f9400bde
> 58e6bf d&id=9f6ad741e7&e=3715cff890> My post about the Supreme Court
> announcement is here.
>
> With gratitude to everyone working to make the digital world
> accessible,
>
>
> p.s.
> <http://us13.forward-to-friend.com/forward?u=c8f001aa20f9400bde58e6bfd
> &id=67 02e1ed9d&e=3715cff890> Forward this email to a friend
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
> Lainey Feingold
> Law Office of Lainey Feingold
> Author,
> <https://lflegal.us13.list-manage.com/track/click?u=c8f001aa20f9400bde
> 58e6bf d&id=9b442e1d42&e=3715cff890> Structured Negotiation | A
> Winning Alternative to Lawsuits
>
> <https://lflegal.us13.list-manage.com/track/click?u=c8f001aa20f9400bde
> 58e6bf d&id=d1948a3102&e=3715cff890> http://lflegal.com/
> 510.548.5062
> <mailto:LF at LFLegal.com> LF at LFLegal.com
>
> <https://lflegal.us13.list-manage.com/track/click?u=c8f001aa20f9400bde
> 58e6bf d&id=329bcfbcf0&e=3715cff890> Follow on Twitter
>
>
>
>
>
> All the best,
>
> Richard
>
> Richard Godfrey-McKay
>
> Telephone: 01738-445-880
>
> if you haven't called before you may be asked to identify yourself by
> the Truecall call screening service
>
> Mobile: 07791 452 593
>
>
>
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