Semantic Markups (lacking a standard)

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Mark

There's a lot of emphasis in the CSU on using semantic markup when crafting web presences and I was curious as to what the thinking was as far as the web standards of 508 not incorporating a explicit either requirement of suggestion for using semantic markup, and by that I mean things like, you know, heading 1, heading 2, heading 3, list, you know stuff like that. It's part of good web design, but I was a little surprised that there wasn't something about semantic markups broadly in the 508 standards. Can you comment on that

Doug

Yeah. And if I understand your question right, you're basically saying that there's a lot of stuff that's good for accessibility that is page structure that is not in here. Is that an accurate interpretation?

Mark

Yes, it is.

Doug

OK, I agree wholeheartedly. And, unfortunately, you know, you read recommendations and they're saying you should use emphasis which is nowhere near as good as using headers. And I have actually given a lot of thought to some of this...our main problem is that it is supposed to be enforceable that if somebody says, you should have, and they say, I couldn't...who makes the judgment. The area where I see this being difficult is headers. Headers are a godsend for navigating. But, can you mandate headers and mandate in such a way that you won't get into, you know, a quibbling about whether or not a header should be used. There's a difference again between requirements and guidelines and a lot of what you're saying, I think comes under very, very good practices, but I don't know if they could be legislated. I would like them to be. So that doesn't really answer your question, does it?

Mark

It does. What I'm hearing you say is that it's not a question about whether they're beneficial, it's a question about whether or not they could be codified and enforced.

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