Accessibility: Semantic labeling

This is split out from the master accessibility thread: Accessibility audit and shepherd for making improvements.

Accessibility question: Are form fields and links properly labeled?

Not always.
Missing label noted in screen shot of checker tool below.
See Techniques for proper labeling here H91: Using HTML form controls and links | Techniques for WCAG 2.0

I tried gathering more data using IDI Web Accessibility Checker : Web Accessibility Checker, trying to find tools to automate some of these checks. I checked several pages as representative of the user interfaces that make up the bulk of user interactions (home, category, topic pages). There was one class of “known problems” (using <b> tags). There’s some previous conversation here and here about whether the <b> / <strong> distinction is meaningful (from the perspective of the accessibility audit the answer is a definite “yes,” even if this might feel pedantic or like it’s adding cost of bytes over the wire for the longer tag).

I didn’t yet investigate the “potential problems,” but could include that in the next phase of improvements.

So the next steps here would be: what would it take to change <b> tags to <strong> on the accessibility checking tool’s recommendation? Or if folks have questions or concerns about trusting that tool’s recommendations, we could look for other guidance here (ideally that comes with automated tooling).

One problem here is that the checker needs to be loading the full page in the browser, as rendered by JavaScript – if it is doing a curl command it is not getting the same page the actual browser is getting, as the whole page is built using JavaScript commands.

@codinghorror Ah cool, that seems like a good thing to watch out for in general. :+1: I think there are bunch of better tools to do this as well, and it’d be good to find out more there too!

For the particular issue here, I don’t see as much how that’s related though, that tool seems to have done the trick in spotting this bit. :slight_smile: