This week in WordPress Accessibility, May 23th, 2018

Weekly Bug scrub

Trac tickets

#44007: Making a child theme link should open in new tab
Decided to close the issue as we are working on removing the target=”_blank” option for the WP Admin for cases like this (see the WPA11y handbook: The link opens in a window or tab).

#44035: Admin flyout submenu does not open on mouseover when changing device width in browser
Decided to remove the accessibility focus; this is an overall issue, not specifically a11y.

#44073: Add functionality to search plugin with double quoted keyword
Decided to remove the accessibility focus, as not related to web content accessibility issues.

Gutenberg issues

Gutenberg 1311 react-datepicker is not accessible

The current date picker is not (keyboard) accessible. We need a good alternative.

The most robust solution would be:

  • 3 separate input fields of type `text` with a placeholder to hint about the expected format [mm] [dd] [yyyy]. It seems like some AT like Dragon doesn’t handle the HTML5 type=date very well. This could do with more user testing
  • client validation
  • clicking on the fields also opens a datepicker, at that point Andrea doesn’t mind about the datepicker accessibility since there are standard input fields

Gutenberg 469 Expandable UI sections accessibility
The point is:

  • either the expanded panel immediately follows the toggle that expanded it
  • or focus should be managed properly

Gutenberg 6468 WritingFlow should exclude standard input fields
WritingFlow is the Gutenberg feature that allows to go through all blocks using the arrow keys
It’s intended to emulate the native behavior in a textarea, as all the blocks were part of a unique textarea (and under the hoods, they are)
So when you’re in a block and press the Down arrow key, you navigate through the block text content and then to the following block. Also Left / Right arrows are used for WritingFlow. However When focus is within an input field, that becomes very confusing.

We proposed to add Milestone 5.00 to this issue, as this seems pretty essential for keyboard users.

Weekly team meeting

The work on the Handbook Best Practices is on hold, because we @samikeijonen en @rianrietveld need time to prepare for their workshop a11y testing at WordCamp Europe.

The pair programming plan for the WordCamp Europe contributor day goes well, we have a11y experts and Gutenberg devs that want to participate. Hopefully we can get some more people joining the GutenA11y table then.

@afercia asked for a11y testing of the new block inserter for Gutenberg. See 6636 Try inserter with collapsable panels. It still needs some further simplification, like removing some ARIA stuff. This functionality is installed on our test server ( Rian will ask some people to test, if you need access give her a ping on Slack.

@abrightclearweb is going to lead the accessibility table in Glasgow.



  • Test the new Gutenberg block inserter: everyone
  • Write about what WCAG 2.1 means for the WordPress project: Rian (planned for end of May)
  • Write ATAG statement: Joe Dolson