Title text on text links
Sunday, 29 November 2009
Following a discussion I had with a colleague on Friday, I have decided to post a few paragraphs on the topic of using 'title text' on textual hyperlinks in HTML.
In one of the corporate websites I am working on, title text (the title attribute of the HTML anchor tag) is everywhere. You can't move your cursor without title text popping up left, right and center. What makes this worse, is that the title text is the same as the hyperlink text- this is unnecessary duplication, and just adds 'noise' to the website.
My colleague said that this "aids accessibility for blind user's", but it clearly doesn't. In fact, screen readers such as JAWS do not read title text as a default setting. This functionality has to be configured manually (through the JAWS verbosity options window).
The basic rule of thumb is : Title text should only be used to provide more information about the link destination. Use with caution, and certainly don't just duplicate the link text in the title attribute.
Title text is misused in many websites… don't let yours be one of them!
Please let me know if you have and thoughts or comments on this topic.
Posted byCharlie M at 03:16