Bug 39558 - ACCESSIBILITY: always prompt for text alternative when inserting picture to create accessible documents by default
Summary: ACCESSIBILITY: always prompt for text alternative when inserting picture to c...
Status: NEW
Alias: None
Product: LibreOffice
Classification: Unclassified
Component: LibreOffice (show other bugs)
(earliest affected)
3.5.0 RC1
Hardware: Other All
: medium enhancement
Assignee: Not Assigned
Keywords: accessibility, needsDevEval
: 148935 156197 (view as bug list)
Depends on:
Blocks: a11y, Accessibility
  Show dependency treegraph
Reported: 2011-07-26 07:22 UTC by Christophe Strobbe
Modified: 2023-07-10 08:38 UTC (History)
11 users (show)

See Also:
Crash report or crash signature:


Note You need to log in before you can comment on or make changes to this bug.
Description Christophe Strobbe 2011-07-26 07:22:20 UTC
When creating accessible documents, images and other objects need a text alternative. This text alternative is used in text-to-speech (for example in screen readers) and when converting to other formats such as audio books and Braille. In Writer, a text alternative can be added after inserting a picture, but it would be more efficient to allow users to add the text alternative while inserting the picture.

The current process is:
1. Through the menus, go to Insert -> Picture -> From file...; 
2. Browse to the image file and press Open.
3. In the Writer document, right-click on the picture, then either
3.a. select Picture from the context menu, go to the Options tab and fill in the field 'Alternative (Text only)', or
3.b. select Description from the context menu, and fill in Title (if the picture is so clomplex that it requires an elaborate description, also fill in Description).

The new process would be:
1. Through the menus, go to Insert -> Picture -> From file...; 
2. Browse to the image file, fill in the field 'Alternative (Text only)' and press Open.
(When you then right-click on the picture, you should find the text alternative both on the Options tab of the Picture dialog and in the Title field of the Description dialog.)

Some WYSIWYG HTML editors have supported this for years (for example the Composer that is part of Mozilla Seamonkey, and previously Netscape Composer).
See also the current working draft of the W3C Authoring Tool Accessibility Guidelines (ATAG) 2.0 and the implementation guidance at http://www.w3.org/TR/2011/WD-IMPLEMENTING-ATAG20-20110721/#sc_b222 .

This issue is currently linked to Writer, but it is also relevant to Impress.
Comment 1 Björn Michaelsen 2011-12-23 12:27:18 UTC Comment hidden (obsolete)
Comment 2 Christophe Strobbe 2012-01-27 03:57:56 UTC Comment hidden (obsolete)
Comment 3 QA Administrators 2015-02-19 15:48:33 UTC Comment hidden (obsolete)
Comment 4 Buovjaga 2015-03-08 17:31:48 UTC Comment hidden (obsolete)
Comment 5 V Stuart Foote 2015-03-08 18:26:23 UTC
Confirming still a valid a11y requirement, nothing more needed from UX-design.
Comment 6 Robinson Tryon (qubit) 2015-03-31 13:55:38 UTC Comment hidden (obsolete)
Comment 7 Robinson Tryon (qubit) 2015-12-10 03:37:42 UTC Comment hidden (obsolete)
Comment 8 Samuel Thibault 2016-08-09 16:55:22 UTC

Just to confirm the need for this: people will always be lazy and not set a title, if they don't have a very easy way to do so. Currently, setting a title for the image is really not convenient, I didn't find it in the contextual menu, and was about to think that it wasn't available at all and give up tagging my presentations...

Actually, untitled pictures should have some sort of halo around them, to show that something is wrong, just like misspelled text are underlined in red. The halo could be blue for instance to represent accessibility. And then in the contextual menu, the very first item would allow to set the title for the image (or explicitly set an empty title, for pure decorations).

Comment 9 V Stuart Foote 2016-08-09 17:52:11 UTC
Yes and you'll note that in bug 101193 we've made more of a mess by removing the Description and Name actions from the context menu. At 5.2 they can be added back by customizing the context menus.

The title in the Description dialog becomes the Alt-text entry picked up by AT for images and other objects in documents, and should be included with HTML formatting. The description can be used by AT as alternative.

And we make it more difficult missing a context menu entry for Name. The field from the Name dialog is picked up as Name for objects in Navigator.

The Name and Description actions have been moved upward in the menu structure: on the Format menu in Writer, Impress. And on the Modify menu in Draw. But it remains on the Context Menu for objects inserted into a Calc sheet.

So, if these remain "suppressed" in the UI--agree it becomes more valid to nag folks to fully attribute an image or object while being created.
Comment 10 Yousuf Philips (jay) (retired) 2016-09-05 21:36:49 UTC
One option, atleast for images as its impossible for a11y users to insert shapes, would be to always show the Name dialog (.uno:NameGroup) after inserting the image. This could be done in 2 ways:

1) Have a checkbox in the insert image dialog which can be checked to auto open the dialog (in writer the uno command would likely have to be modified as it is currently disabled when selecting an image)

2) Have a checkbox in the Tools > Options dialog for accessibility mode, where it would automatically do a variety of different things that are beneficial to a11y users. (maybe this could automatically be enabled when LO detects that a screen reader is active)
Comment 11 Buovjaga 2016-09-12 09:58:05 UTC Comment hidden (obsolete)
Comment 12 Yousuf Philips (jay) (retired) 2016-09-12 23:35:41 UTC
(In reply to Buovjaga from comment #11)
> At the conference, Armin pointed out this:
> Ctrl+Enter with keyboard focus (F6) on a drawing object icon on Tools bar:
> Inserts a drawing object of default size into the center of the current view.
> https://help.libreoffice.org/Draw/
> Shortcut_Keys_for_Drawings#Shortcut_Keys_Specific_to_Drawings

Texou mentioned this in irc as well a few days back, but the shortcut isnt easily discoverable and it doesnt help a11y users doing it through Insert > Shapes. :D
Comment 13 Stéphane Guillou (stragu) 2021-06-21 12:12:31 UTC Comment hidden (obsolete)
Comment 14 Stéphane Guillou (stragu) 2021-06-21 12:16:13 UTC
This is still the case with:

Version: / LibreOffice Community
Build ID: 94d552f94b427f884c004dba5d4619ecf729d605
CPU threads: 8; OS: Linux 4.15; UI render: default; VCL: gtk3
Locale: en-AU (en_AU.UTF-8); UI: en-US
TinderBox: Linux-rpm_deb-x86_64@86-TDF, Branch:master, Time: 2021-06-18_13:30:27
Calc: threaded

The image alternative text is buried way too deep and makes it very unlikely that users will bother with filling it in:

Right-click > Properties > Options > Alternative text > OK

Imagine the process for someone turning a rather large document into something accessible to screen readers.
Comment 15 Olivier Hallot 2022-05-04 22:14:07 UTC
*** Bug 148935 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***
Comment 16 V Stuart Foote 2023-07-09 00:59:19 UTC
*** Bug 156197 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***