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Re: [libreoffice-accessibility] LibeOffice VPAT compliance


Hi,

I don't know if we are all on the same page about what providing a VPAT involves, so I am taking 
the liberty to butt in here to comment on few things that have been said in this thread.

First of all, VPAT is a type of document defined by Section 508 of the U.S. Rehabilitation Act of 
1973, but that does not imply that it is written by lawyers. Creating a VPAT requires an 
accessibility audit by people who are thoroughly familiar with both the application being audited 
and the relevant accessibility criteria. (Lawyers will probably want to review the resulting 
report, but I doubt they are well equipped to write it.)

Second, the accessibility of authoring tools such as those that make up LibreOffice can be viewed 
from two points of view: (a) the accessibility of the UI itself (can you use it using the keyboard 
alone, does it expose an accessibility API that screen readers can use, etc.) and (b) its ability 
to create accessible content (not only in ODF format but also in each of the output formats that 
the tool supports, e.g. HTML, PDF and the Microsoft formats). The accessibility checker that was 
discussed in a related thread supports authors in creating accessible content but does not help the 
tool meet the first category of accessibility requirements.

Finally, an accessibility audit of an office suite is a big task. I regularly do accessibility 
audits of webpages and websites (as certified BITV auditor in Germany) and checking a single page 
can take up to a full day (depending on page complexity). Each of the single applications or 
components in LibreOffice (Writer, Calc, Impress, Base, Draw, Math) is more complex than most 
webpages. Due to the size of the task I would recommend to audit each application separately (to 
whoever ends up doing this) and that the USPTO should clarify which of the LibreOffice applications 
they need or need most (to prioritise which applications to audit first; e.g. they might not be 
interested in Draw).

I might offer to make an estimate of how much time it may take to audit, e.g. LibreOffice Writer. 
If I do, I'll inform this list during the weekend.

Best regards,

Christophe Strobbe

On 14 September 2020 at 15:10 Italo Vignoli <italo@libreoffice.org> wrote:


Again, if my previous messages were not clear enough: we do not know
about the VPAT compatibility of LibreOffice, because this is a mailing
list to discuss accessibility issues and not to provide information
about LibreOffice accessibility.

The fact that you are using LibreOffice 6.4.6 is completely irrelevant
for us because we do not have the information to answer your question,
as the scope of the mailing list is completely different.

We are volunteers supporting the LibreOffoce project and interested in
accessibility, but we do not have the competence and the information to
answer your question, which can only be provided by the legal entity
behind LibreOffice, i.r. The Document Foundation.

In addition, most of the mailing list subscribers are based in Europe,
and are not familiar with US accessibility regulations. It is possible
that no one based in the US is subscribed to the accessibility mailing list.

So, to get an answer you should write to info@documentfoundation.org,
because the foundation's Board of Directors is the only body who knows
about LibreOffice accessibility compliance with different regulations,
and - if necessary - can provide the legal evidence.

Best regards, Italo

On 9/14/20 1:52 PM, Ragheb, Hemmat (IIa) wrote:
Hello,

We are not using the Red-Hat package, they do not have LibreOffice 6.4.6, with are using a RPM 
package or building from source.
Also, This is not about the application is packaging or which operating system used, this is 
about the facilities provided by the LibreOffice application.

Are we to conclude that currently LibreOffice is not VPAT compliant, are any plans in place to 
have LibreOffice meat the requirements of VPAT section 508.

Thanks,

Hemmat Ragheb
IT Support Services (ITSS), OEMS O&M Support
Information International Associates (IIA)
OCIO/OIEO/ESSD
U.S. Patent & Trademark Office
571 775 8350 Office
571 345 5189 Cell




-----Original Message-----
From: Italo Vignoli <italo@libreoffice.org> 
Sent: Monday, September 14, 2020 7:36 AM
To: Ragheb, Hemmat (IIa) <Hemmat.Ragheb2@USPTO.GOV>
Cc: accessibility@global.libreoffice.org; Sabbani, Karunakar (IIa) 
<Karunakar.Sabbani@USPTO.GOV>; Xiao, Quansheng (Victor) <Quansheng.Xiao@USPTO.GOV>
Subject: Re: [libreoffice-accessibility] LibeOffice VPAT compliance

Yes, I know, but my previous answer is valid. This is a volunteer attended mailing list and we 
cannot provide an answer to your question because we are not allowed to do so. So, please write 
to the other email I provided. Best regards.

14 Sep 2020 12:32:15 Ragheb, Hemmat (IIa) <Hemmat.Ragheb2@USPTO.GOV>:

Hello Italo,

The Voluntary Product Accessibility Template (VPAT) section 508 is about the product 
irrespective of which Operating System.

The VPAT is to support users with disabilities, help users to be able to use the application.

Thanks,

Hemmat Ragheb
IT Support Services (ITSS), OEMS O&M Support Information International 
Associates (IIA) OCIO/OIEO/ESSD U.S. Patent & Trademark Office
571 775 8350 Office
571 345 5189 Cell

-----Original Message-----
From: Italo Vignoli <italo@libreoffice.org>
Sent: Friday, September 11, 2020 4:42 PM
To: Ragheb, Hemmat (IIa) <Hemmat.Ragheb2@USPTO.GOV>; 
accessibility@global.libreoffice.org
Cc: Sabbani, Karunakar (IIa) <Karunakar.Sabbani@USPTO.GOV>; Xiao, 
Quansheng (Victor) <Quansheng.Xiao@USPTO.GOV>
Subject: Re: [libreoffice-accessibility] LibeOffice VPAT compliance

Dear Sir,

LibreOffice is a free open source software, released by a not for profit foundation based in 
Germany: The Document Foundation. The source code of LibreOffice is re-packaged by Red Hat to 
be included in RHEL.

You have sent your message to a mailing list manned by volunteers, who are dealing with 
accessibility features but not with accessibility legal compliance. We do not know enough the 
topic to provide a sensible answer and in any case we would not be able to issue the document 
you have requested.

So, please send your request to the Board of Directors of The Document Foundation, by writing 
to: info@documentfoundation.org. I don't know if they will be able to issue the document, but 
they will be able to answer your question.

Best regards, Italo Vignoli

On 9/11/20 8:12 PM, Ragheb, Hemmat (IIa) wrote:
Hello,

The USPTO is planning to use LibreOffice 6.4.6 for Linux (RHEL7).
Please provide compliance status of LibreOffice with VPAT Section 508 
(https://gcc01.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.section508.gov%2Fsell%2Fvpat&data=02%7C01%7CHemmat.Ragheb2%40USPTO.GOV%7C2025d94d411a40f72cc908d858a26d33%7Cff4abfe983b540268b8ffa69a1cad0b8%7C1%7C0%7C637356801947156025&sdata=XZWDyigZ5zquqH3d%2BD6xmRzUA7okSt%2Be0E8t01CXf%2Bc%3D&reserved=0).

Thanks,

Hemmat Ragheb
IT Support Services (ITSS), O&M Support Information International 
Associates (IIA) OCIO/OIEO/ESSD U.S. Patent & Trademark Office
571 775 8350 Office
571 345 5189 Cell

--
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-- 
Italo Vignoli - LibreOffice Marketing & PR
mobile/signal +39.348.5653829 - email italo@libreoffice.org
hangout/jabber italo.vignoli@gmail.com - skype italovignoli
GPG Key ID - 0xAAB8D5C0
DB75 1534 3FD0 EA5F 56B5 FDA6 DE82 934C AAB8 D5C0

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