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Revision as of 19:05, 8 May 2007 by JamesCraig (talk | contribs) (→‎Disadvantages: reverting content already on (or linked from) accessibility-issues page)
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This page documents microformats and accessibility in general, in particular advantages that adopting microformats provide for accessibility, and for documenting techniques for making microformats more accessible.

We should all strive to make our published microformats, parser implementations, and this wiki, accessible to all users, regardless of their physical abilities and needs, within the limits of the time and resources of the microformats community. Readers are advised to follow the W3C's Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 1.0, to at least level 2. Further advice is available on the Accessify Forums.


Some microformats have potential accessibility advantages.


  • tel in hCard: use style="speak-numeral:digits", so that telephone numbers are read by aural browsers as, for example, "five-five-five one-two-three-four" and not "five-hundred and fifty-five, one-thousand, two-hundred and thirty-two". Note: This is not an advantage to Microformats. It is a CSS best practice and can be used with or without hCard. This should probably be moved to a CSS Best Practices page. - JamesCraig


Some microformats have potential accessibility disadvantages.


  • As mentioned on external sites (see:accessibility issues) and on the microformats-discuss list, the abbr-design-pattern (used in hCard, hCalendar, GEO and others) is in violation of WCAG1 and WCAG2, and has potentially harmful accessibility side-effects of reading machine data to screen reader users rendering human content inaccessible.


  • As mentioned on accessibility issues, the anchor-include-pattern is in violation of WCAG1 and WCAG2, and has potentially harmful accessibility side effects due to the missing link text.

External testimonials

  • hCard and hCalendar Formats - 2006-08-03 in w3c-wai-ig. e.g.

    I think is doing rather well on it's own, and it isn't particularly something that the W3C would or should get involved in until it's settled down. (And then it would just be a ratification kind of thing.)


    In fact, it is likely to be good for accessibility, as the tools for consuming microformats often require valid code.

See also