WCAG 2.2 Delay

WCAG 2.2 Delay – When Will It Arrive?

Published: January 2, 2023

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    “When will the WCAG 2.2 update arrive and is there any delay?” is the perpetual question in website owners’ and developers’ minds. With the latest version of the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) forever ‘on its way,’ one does wonder when its official launch is.

    Undoubtedly the W3C did publish an official Candidate Recommendation Snapshot for WCAG 2.2 on 6th September 2022.

    The public comments for the May 2021 review draft were the basis for the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) to integrate changes to WCAG 2.2. 

    However, the snapshot isn’t an official publication of WCAG 2.2 as a recommendation. While WCAG 2.2 should be published early in 2023, it is not final.

    There may be changes, which makes one wonder why there is so much delay in WCAG 2.2 release.

    The reason is relatively straightforward: it is all part of the process.

    Read on to find out why the WCAG update takes so much time to release. Also, learn a few valuable tips which will be helpful while you prepare your website for the next update.

    New digital accessibility requirements in WCAG 2.2

    New digital accessibility requirements in WCAG 2.2

    All WCAG versions are backward compatible with the previous versions. So it means that WCAG 2.2 will have WCAG 2.1 and 2.0 requirements and additional new success criteria.

    There will also be some minor changes to the language.

    However, as there is no deprecation in the new versions over the earlier versions, the new WCAG version wordings must be precise. Any revision the authors have in mind will be introduced in the W3C draft process.

    There have been numerous changes to the WCAG 2.2 compared to the earlier versions. Some crucial changes mentioned in the Candidate Recommendation include:

    While WCAG 2.2 won’t include these success criteria, it doesn’t imply they aren’t necessary, and it’s just that the W3C authors didn’t agree upon some specific requirements for the standards.

    Why web admins should wait for official recommendations to finalize web accessibility

    It’s most likely that the W3C draft process will last a few more years. This wait is justified as developers must test their content based on the new success criteria.

    The W3C will then have to remove or recategorize any requirement that seems too vague to apply to different digital content types.

    While you must recognize new WCAG versions, the guidelines will undergo further change before its official public release.

    Should webmasters follow WCAG 2.2 even before its release?

    According to W3C, web admins should test their web pages as per the latest WCAG version, in this case, WCAG 2.1. So don’t focus on the new WCAG 2.2 criteria if your website doesn’t conform to WCAG 2.1’s level A and AA success criteria.

    Instead, focus on resolving these issues before testing against WCAG 2.2. You will, however, be ready for WCAG 2.2 if your website conforms to WCAG 2.1.

    Why web admins should wait for official recommendations to finalize WCAG 2.2

    Improve website accessibility requirements with a user-focused approach

    Adopting a user-focused approach is the best way to improve accessibility. Start by reading WCAG 2.2’s nine new success criteria and work towards ensuring web accessibility per these requirements.

    While focusing on accessibility compliance, the improvements should prove most beneficial to people with disabilities

    For example, according to the WCAG 2.2 3.2.6 success criterion ‘Findable Help’, users shouldn’t have a problem finding help when necessary. It’s because some users with disabilities may need help browsing your website.

    Including human contact details on all the web pages will help improve their user experience. On the contrary, directing the users to a toll-free number will not help them but instead creates new accessibility issues.

    Adopting a user-focused approach lets you enjoy digital accessibility while preparing you for the official release of WCAG 2.2 when it eventually arrives.

    Contact us at ADA Site Compliance as your #1 source for ADA website accessibility compliance assistance today.

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