The Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 1.0 have been in place since 1999. A fairly complex set of guidelines that outline how to make Web content accessibie to those with disabilities, they have by and large been the standard.
No matter how you slice it, 1999 is a long time ago, especially in the Web industry. For the past few years, a 2.0 has been in the works.
On December 11th, the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0 were made into a W3C Recommendation.
The 2.0 guidelines haven’t been without controversy. Noted accessibility voice Joe Clark, in 2006, posted a strong criticism in his “To Hell with WCAG 2” article at A List Apart. His criticisms were many, and even spawned a group called the WCAG Samurai, which offered their own addendums to WCAG 1.0.
I’m sure to be blogging a lot about 2.0 in future entries. I’ve been carefully studying the admittedly very intensive do’s and don’t that lie within it. Some experts feel WCAG 2 has come a long way since 2006 when it first went out as a proposal; others no doubt remain skeptical.
Regardless, the upgrade to Recommendation status means that we’ll be seeing a lot about WCAG 2 in the months to come.