[Foundation-l] site notice not accessible to users with disabilities

jidanni at jidanni.org jidanni at jidanni.org
Sun Apr 26 21:47:06 UTC 2009

Imagine there was a message so important that you show it at the top of
the page, on every page on the whole site, and in every language; no
matter if you are logged in or not, and no matter how many times you
have seen it before.

Then imagine all you ever hear about these messages is a passing mention

       The survey, which ran in a central sitenotice in October and
       November of last year ... and whether they donated to the
       Wikimedia Foundation (or not).

Of course they did not donate. They never saw any fundrasing, nor
Wikimaina notices, so nobody ever encounters such users either.

In http://thread.gmane.org/gmane.science.linguistics.wikipedia.technical/42824
Aryeh Gregor <Simetrical+wikilist at gmail.com> writes:
> My understanding is that we use JS for this so that
> a) search engines don't pick up the notices (which are typically transient),
That is throwing the baby out with the bathwater. Also search engines
request that you don't try to present different content to them than
regular users. I'm sure site notices would not spoil search engine

> b) we avoid Squid cache, so they can be visible immediately.
I.e., they are of the utmost importance that everybody see.

Please use a different technical solution. Site notices and ways to just
see them once etc. have been around at least since UNIX. Never before
has one used a method that excludes users of certain devices from ever
knowing about them.

Isn't an accessible web site a pre-requisite for some grant monies?
At least provide site messages that gracefully degrade if one does not
use fancy browsers, but not disappear completely!

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