WCAG 1.0 Level A Checkpoint 4.1

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“Clearly identify changes in the natural language of a document's text and any text equivalents (e.g., captions).”

This is important for:

  • Braille readers
  • Multilingual speech synthesizers
  • Appropriate use of machine translators

Visitors who are reading the document in Braille will be able to substitute appropriate control codes (markup) where language changes occur to ensure that the Braille translation software will generate the correct characters (e.g., accent marks).

Speech synthesizers that have multilingual capabilities will be able to generate the text with the proper pronunciation.

Users will be able to have unfamiliar languages translated by machine translators.

Checkmark icon Note: This also increases the accessibility of the content to visitors who may not be literate in the primary language of the document.

Example

Before:

<p>And with a certain je ne sais quoi, she entered both the room, and his life, forever. <q>My name is Natasha,</q> she said. <q>Piacere,</q> he replied in impeccable Italian, locking the door.</p>

After:

<p>And with a certain <span lang="fr">je ne sais quoi</span>, she entered both the room, and his life, forever. <q>My name is Natasha,</q> she said. <q lang="it">Piacere,</q> he replied in impeccable Italian...</p>

Reference

ISO Two-Letter Language Codes

WCAG 1.0: Checkpoint 4.1