Re: What is the issue with Captchas?


Cindy Lou,

          I want to be clear that I was trying to state that your anger, which there was in that post, was entirely justifiable but that your assertion, "with image captchas whose value at thwarting hackers is dubious at best," was not.  The value of Captchas for that particular security purpose is incredibly strong and well documented.  It made a very wide array of bot based attacks vanish and stay vanished.  That was the focus of my comment to you.

          The rest was more general.  I can never understand the degree of frustration that has been expressed in this thread other than in the abstract because I do know that the issues you all have identified don't affect me.  But at the same time there seems to be an undercurrent of, "this is a plot against accessibility," which it most certainly was not.

          There are also a lot of Captcha imitators who, to put it mildly, have never even attempted to support accessibility.  I could post links to a number of web pages I know of that use the "image of distorted letters but with no alternate nor audio" verification method, and hasten to add that these are not Captchas, though I get entirely why the term Captcha has become generic much like Kleenex, Jello, Frigidaire, Xerox, and many others before it.  Everyone who holds the trademarks on these gets really upset when they become "the generic term" because those who are doing knock-offs are generally not doing good or faithful ones.  I just want to emphasize that the Captcha folks already recognize what a barrier even the "improved" version can be, hence the move to reCaptcha that I mentioned earlier.

          There really is, believe it or not, a genuine concern with accessibility and thinking about it ahead of time by most major companies these days.  Some are still caught with the technology (e.g., conventional Captchas) that they have until the next release of their development cycle catches up.  Others, however, really don't give a flying rat's patootie and should be pilloried for that.


Join to automatically receive all group messages.