2015-05-03 22:50 GMT+02:00 Whatamidoing (WMF)/Sherry Snyder <ssnyder@wikimedia.org>:
I read the w3.org "no Click Here" tip, and I think I disagree with it.  The tip (which has a disclaimer about being non-binding and unofficial) gives four examples.  It contrasts common, familiar forms like "click here to download" with their ideal:

Tell me more about Amaya: W3C's free editor/browser that lets you create HTML, SVG, and MathML documents.

As a person who has no idea what Amaya is, I actually find this "ideal" example to be the least helpful of all of them.  There are four links there, and I've no idea which one I should click on, what will happen if I do, or if any of them will have the information I want.  With "Click here to download", I've got a pretty clear idea what's going to happen:  something will start downloading as soon as I click it.  With this "ideal", I've no idea what's going to happen with anything that I click on.

Also, the tip has diverged significantly from the original, and I think it has diverged for the worse. 

Yes there are four links, but all of them are explicit about their topic. I personnaly agree with W3C (also because "click here" is non sense when you don't use a mouse: you could "tap" it (on a tactile screen), or select it with the keyboard (TAB keys) and press Enter, or use a vocal interface for reading the text, order to the browser to enumerate vocally selectable links and activating links by pronouncing a word like "go" or "select"...

Personnally, the W3C could have emphasized the main link, but the leading sentence is enough "Tell me more about" (the rest after the colon is a summary description of what it is, because "Amaya" is not explicit enough to know what it means) 

It seems natural to add a few more links in this example because these are topics covered by Amaya, and main topics for the W3C itself (Amaya is not a required tool for working with HTML, SVG or MatchML).

May be the W3C could have put the whole sentence "Tell me more about Amaya" in the link, or could have boldened the Amaya term, to show more explicitly that this is the main term.

But in this example, all 4 links are appropriate in the context of the page where this is used: a general page about web design in general where Amaya is not essential, but references to HTML and SVG are essential (MathML is less essential, in fact given that HTML5 now includes SVG and MathML (and a few other related standards, including XML data not listed here), it could have just used a single link to HTML; SVG and MathML are no longer needed here)

So yes, I ALWAYS avoid the "click here" (or remove it when I find them: sometimes the links are only on the very short word "here" and are almost invisible, notably on sites like our wikis that do not force underlined links because underlining does not work very well with international scripts):

We use explicit terms about the main topic of the target page, and if it is not enough explicit, we add a summary description, like the W3C did in this example (even if it could be shortened today).

The W3C also gives here a general opinion (and excellent advice) shared by lot of informed web designers, and it is appropriate here when W3C supports the development of accessibility on the web: don't assume a mouse or any hardware device. And we should not even need to depend on visual tips (that appear temporarily when hovering links with a mouse): the topic must be clearly stated without having to discover that there's a small tooltip (frequently not very accessible).

Another final reason is that the document may also be printed: will you know what the links refers to when its printed description is just "click here"? No, even if the list of links is also printed at end of pages: the URLs will be printed, but their description will just be a mere "click here" completely out of context, making the URL shown in that list completely blind without any description.