Topics

moderated Use of Headings, or Rather Lack Thereof, in Groups.IO Discussion Lists


David Kingsbury
 

Hi all,

 

I have come to really value the various Groups.IO lists related to accessibility, including this one. However, one thing that has always irked me is how clunky and inefficient navigation is on the web pages where you access discussion strings on individual topics. Other than a single level 4 heading just above the initial question, there is no use of headings for replies. Appropriate use of headings here would significantly enable more efficient navigation by screen reader users.

 

Previously, I had a few workarounds on web pages for reading through discussions. If using Edge, I could put it in immersive reader view and that helped. But with the newest version of Windows 10, immersive reader seems to have disappeared for some pages and remained for others. I even figured out that I could search for the number sign with Control F and then F3 to get to the top of each response because each one used to start with a message number, but no longer. So now, I am stuck endlessly down arrowing through the discussions. This is a very inefficient way to navigate web pages.

 

I emailed the Groups. IO tech support people with this concern several months ago and they never responded. Because I had figured out some personal workarounds, and this is a free service, so I suppose you get what you pay for, I never made a second attempt to contact them. But my workarounds no longer work, and navigation is very tedious.

 

I am sure that those who run Groups.IO are people of goodwill. I imagine too that they are unaware that well-placed insertion of headings greatly facilitates navigation by screen reader users.

 

So, a couple of questions. Should list administrators contact the Groups.IO developers with this concern to ask that they make better use of headings on the web pages? Or if others on this list agree that better use of headings would greatly improve our ability to use Groups.IO more efficiently, is there a way we can advocate as a group, versus sending the occasional solitary email complaint that ultimately goes unanswered?

 

Ideally, on the web pages, each original question and the responses would be tagged with a heading. On the daily digest, “New topics” and “new replies” would both have headings. However, adding headings to the web pages is the biggest priority.

 

I want to emphasize that I wouldn’t expend time on this if I didn’t value the service. It is an excellent resource. But that doesn’t mean there is no room for improvement.

 

Thanks to all who support asking that they do something about this. Also, sorry in advance for any inconvenience to you because I am sending this message to several lists, so you may see some repetition.

 

Regards,

David


 

David,

           I have just updated my tutorial, Searching the JAWS Group Archive, most of which is applicable to browsing and reading the regular Topics page for any given Groups.io group as well.

           I don't know why the table format that Groups.io has started to use is not working correctly with NVDA (and possibly JAWS) under Firefox, but it is working consistently under any Chromium-based browser I've used.  See if that helps out at all.

           As far as Groups.io "higher ups," though the service is seemingly huge, the development team is anything but.  Contacting them with your concerns via support@groups.io is the one and only mechanism I know of.
--

Brian - Windows 10 Pro, 64-Bit, Version 2004, Build 19041  

The purpose of education is not to validate ignorance but to overcome it.
       ~ Lawrence Krauss


Cohn, Jonathan
 

Well, groups.io does use layout tables, so perhaps try turning off ignoring of layout tables in your screen reader and see if that works for you.. If not, I could see creating a javascript applet that might help if more than just you are interested. On Macintosh with VoiceOver, I can tell VoiceOver to interact with tables on the groups.io pages and then use next row twice to switch from message to message.
   

On Nov 15, 2020, at 16:56, David Kingsbury <davidkingsbury77@...> wrote:

Hi all,

 

I have come to really value the various Groups.IO lists related to accessibility, including this one. However, one thing that has always irked me is how clunky and inefficient navigation is on the web pages where you access discussion strings on individual topics. Other than a single level 4 heading just above the initial question, there is no use of headings for replies. Appropriate use of headings here would significantly enable more efficient navigation by screen reader users.

 

Previously, I had a few workarounds on web pages for reading through discussions. If using Edge, I could put it in immersive reader view and that helped. But with the newest version of Windows 10, immersive reader seems to have disappeared for some pages and remained for others. I even figured out that I could search for the number sign with Control F and then F3 to get to the top of each response because each one used to start with a message number, but no longer. So now, I am stuck endlessly down arrowing through the discussions. This is a very inefficient way to navigate web pages.

 

I emailed the Groups. IO tech support people with this concern several months ago and they never responded. Because I had figured out some personal workarounds, and this is a free service, so I suppose you get what you pay for, I never made a second attempt to contact them. But my workarounds no longer work, and navigation is very tedious.

 

I am sure that those who run Groups.IO are people of goodwill. I imagine too that they are unaware that well-placed insertion of headings greatly facilitates navigation by screen reader users.

 

So, a couple of questions. Should list administrators contact the Groups.IO developers with this concern to ask that they make better use of headings on the web pages? Or if others on this list agree that better use of headings would greatly improve our ability to use Groups.IO more efficiently, is there a way we can advocate as a group, versus sending the occasional solitary email complaint that ultimately goes unanswered?

 

Ideally, on the web pages, each original question and the responses would be tagged with a heading. On the daily digest, “New topics” and “new replies” would both have headings. However, adding headings to the web pages is the biggest priority.

 

I want to emphasize that I wouldn’t expend time on this if I didn’t value the service. It is an excellent resource. But that doesn’t mean there is no room for improvement.

 

Thanks to all who support asking that they do something about this. Also, sorry in advance for any inconvenience to you because I am sending this message to several lists, so you may see some repetition.

 

Regards,

David



 

David,

 

I suggest you write Mark Fletcher who I believe started Groups.io at markf@corp.groups.io and express your accessibility concerns re headings, etc. He has replied to me at least one prior time when I wrote him privately with a question.

 

Alan Lemly

 

From: main@jfw.groups.io [mailto:main@jfw.groups.io] On Behalf Of David Kingsbury
Sent: Sunday, November 15, 2020 3:57 PM
To: 'JAWS Discussion List'
Subject: Use of Headings, or Rather Lack Thereof, in Groups.IO Discussion Lists

 

Hi all,

 

I have come to really value the various Groups.IO lists related to accessibility, including this one. However, one thing that has always irked me is how clunky and inefficient navigation is on the web pages where you access discussion strings on individual topics. Other than a single level 4 heading just above the initial question, there is no use of headings for replies. Appropriate use of headings here would significantly enable more efficient navigation by screen reader users.

 

Previously, I had a few workarounds on web pages for reading through discussions. If using Edge, I could put it in immersive reader view and that helped. But with the newest version of Windows 10, immersive reader seems to have disappeared for some pages and remained for others. I even figured out that I could search for the number sign with Control F and then F3 to get to the top of each response because each one used to start with a message number, but no longer. So now, I am stuck endlessly down arrowing through the discussions. This is a very inefficient way to navigate web pages.

 

I emailed the Groups. IO tech support people with this concern several months ago and they never responded. Because I had figured out some personal workarounds, and this is a free service, so I suppose you get what you pay for, I never made a second attempt to contact them. But my workarounds no longer work, and navigation is very tedious.

 

I am sure that those who run Groups.IO are people of goodwill. I imagine too that they are unaware that well-placed insertion of headings greatly facilitates navigation by screen reader users.

 

So, a couple of questions. Should list administrators contact the Groups.IO developers with this concern to ask that they make better use of headings on the web pages? Or if others on this list agree that better use of headings would greatly improve our ability to use Groups.IO more efficiently, is there a way we can advocate as a group, versus sending the occasional solitary email complaint that ultimately goes unanswered?

 

Ideally, on the web pages, each original question and the responses would be tagged with a heading. On the daily digest, “New topics” and “new replies” would both have headings. However, adding headings to the web pages is the biggest priority.

 

I want to emphasize that I wouldn’t expend time on this if I didn’t value the service. It is an excellent resource. But that doesn’t mean there is no room for improvement.

 

Thanks to all who support asking that they do something about this. Also, sorry in advance for any inconvenience to you because I am sending this message to several lists, so you may see some repetition.

 

Regards,

David


Alex Kenny
 

While headings would be ideal, it is possible to quickly jump to the next or previous message in a topic using the  quick navigation keys for separators (Hyphen and Shift+hyphen).


David Kingsbury
 

Hi all,

 

Wow, I should have first asked what others do. Hitting the hyphen for separators helped, but I never thought about checking if the messages were in a table. Pretty dumb of me. That works great. Using table navigation even reads you each message without hitting any other keys.

 

While headings would be nice too, table navigation works great here. Thanks for pointing this out, and again, wish I had asked earlier.

David