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Tags Not Correct in Exported Tagged PDF

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Mar 18, 2020

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We've been asked for the firtst time to create an Accessible PDF from InDesign CS6 files, so we're working in that.

 

Everything seems to make sense for how this works from InD and I've set the "Export Tagging," "PDF" section of a bunch of styles to the PDF tags, <H1> through <H4>, as well as assigning the <P> tag to textual styles.

 

But, when exporting and turning on "Create Tagged PDF" the tags that are showing in the Acrobat file aren't <H1> and <P> (for instance), but rather <UNIT_PT> and <Normal> which reflect the InDesign style names.

 

Is there something I'm missing?

 

Thanks!
Ken

Adobe Community Professional
Correct answer by Bevi_Chagnon___PubCom | Adobe Community Professional

Three issues:

  1. When in Acrobat and viewing the tag tree, turn on the feature to Apply Role Mapping.
    1. Select the Options Menu on the tag tree.
    2. Check Apply Role Mapping to Tags to view the real tags for accessible PDFs. You'll need a recent version of Acrobat Pro that has this feature.

      Apply Role Map to PDFs exported from Adobe InDesign.Apply Role Map to PDFs exported from Adobe InDesign.
  2. In InDesign, you also need to set the Export Tags on every style to the appropriate tag.
    1. <P> for all forms of Body Text.
    2. <H1>  - <H6> for titles and headings, used in a logical, hierarchical order.
    3. Artifact for paragraphs of text that should be artifacted, like headers and footers.
    4. Automatic for Lists, Tables of Content, Footnotes, Endnotes, Indexes.
    5. <P> for everything else, like captions, sidebars, by-lines, etc.

      Set Export Tags on InDesign's paragraph styles.Set Export Tags on InDesign's paragraph styles.
  3. Use InDesign CC:2019 (version 14.0.3), and not CC:2020 (version 15.x) which has significant errors exporting a compliant, tagged PDF.
    1. InDesign contains the export utility, which converts your layout to a tagged PDF.
    2. CS6's built-in export utility doesn't correctly interpret the layout and, therefore, doesn't tag the PDF correctly. Significant problems.
    3. Therefore, you must upgrade to CC:2019 in order to have the software do the job right. There are no exceptions.
    4. CS6 was released in 2012. The PDF/UA-1 standards (which define how an accessible PDF must be tagged) were not released until 2 years after its release, in 2014. And the PDF/UA-1 standards were updated in 2014. Therefore, don't expect CS6 to create a PDF that meets a standard that didn't yet exist.

 

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Tags Not Correct in Exported Tagged PDF

Contributor ,
Mar 18, 2020

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We've been asked for the firtst time to create an Accessible PDF from InDesign CS6 files, so we're working in that.

 

Everything seems to make sense for how this works from InD and I've set the "Export Tagging," "PDF" section of a bunch of styles to the PDF tags, <H1> through <H4>, as well as assigning the <P> tag to textual styles.

 

But, when exporting and turning on "Create Tagged PDF" the tags that are showing in the Acrobat file aren't <H1> and <P> (for instance), but rather <UNIT_PT> and <Normal> which reflect the InDesign style names.

 

Is there something I'm missing?

 

Thanks!
Ken

Adobe Community Professional
Correct answer by Bevi_Chagnon___PubCom | Adobe Community Professional

Three issues:

  1. When in Acrobat and viewing the tag tree, turn on the feature to Apply Role Mapping.
    1. Select the Options Menu on the tag tree.
    2. Check Apply Role Mapping to Tags to view the real tags for accessible PDFs. You'll need a recent version of Acrobat Pro that has this feature.

      Apply Role Map to PDFs exported from Adobe InDesign.Apply Role Map to PDFs exported from Adobe InDesign.
  2. In InDesign, you also need to set the Export Tags on every style to the appropriate tag.
    1. <P> for all forms of Body Text.
    2. <H1>  - <H6> for titles and headings, used in a logical, hierarchical order.
    3. Artifact for paragraphs of text that should be artifacted, like headers and footers.
    4. Automatic for Lists, Tables of Content, Footnotes, Endnotes, Indexes.
    5. <P> for everything else, like captions, sidebars, by-lines, etc.

      Set Export Tags on InDesign's paragraph styles.Set Export Tags on InDesign's paragraph styles.
  3. Use InDesign CC:2019 (version 14.0.3), and not CC:2020 (version 15.x) which has significant errors exporting a compliant, tagged PDF.
    1. InDesign contains the export utility, which converts your layout to a tagged PDF.
    2. CS6's built-in export utility doesn't correctly interpret the layout and, therefore, doesn't tag the PDF correctly. Significant problems.
    3. Therefore, you must upgrade to CC:2019 in order to have the software do the job right. There are no exceptions.
    4. CS6 was released in 2012. The PDF/UA-1 standards (which define how an accessible PDF must be tagged) were not released until 2 years after its release, in 2014. And the PDF/UA-1 standards were updated in 2014. Therefore, don't expect CS6 to create a PDF that meets a standard that didn't yet exist.

 

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Mar 18, 2020 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
Mar 18, 2020

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Three issues:

  1. When in Acrobat and viewing the tag tree, turn on the feature to Apply Role Mapping.
    1. Select the Options Menu on the tag tree.
    2. Check Apply Role Mapping to Tags to view the real tags for accessible PDFs. You'll need a recent version of Acrobat Pro that has this feature.

      Apply Role Map to PDFs exported from Adobe InDesign.Apply Role Map to PDFs exported from Adobe InDesign.
  2. In InDesign, you also need to set the Export Tags on every style to the appropriate tag.
    1. <P> for all forms of Body Text.
    2. <H1>  - <H6> for titles and headings, used in a logical, hierarchical order.
    3. Artifact for paragraphs of text that should be artifacted, like headers and footers.
    4. Automatic for Lists, Tables of Content, Footnotes, Endnotes, Indexes.
    5. <P> for everything else, like captions, sidebars, by-lines, etc.

      Set Export Tags on InDesign's paragraph styles.Set Export Tags on InDesign's paragraph styles.
  3. Use InDesign CC:2019 (version 14.0.3), and not CC:2020 (version 15.x) which has significant errors exporting a compliant, tagged PDF.
    1. InDesign contains the export utility, which converts your layout to a tagged PDF.
    2. CS6's built-in export utility doesn't correctly interpret the layout and, therefore, doesn't tag the PDF correctly. Significant problems.
    3. Therefore, you must upgrade to CC:2019 in order to have the software do the job right. There are no exceptions.
    4. CS6 was released in 2012. The PDF/UA-1 standards (which define how an accessible PDF must be tagged) were not released until 2 years after its release, in 2014. And the PDF/UA-1 standards were updated in 2014. Therefore, don't expect CS6 to create a PDF that meets a standard that didn't yet exist.

 

Bevi Chagnon | Designer & Technologist for Accessible InDesign + PDFs | Books @ www.PubCom.com/books — NEW! Accessible InDesign + PDF

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Mar 18, 2020 1
Contributor ,
Mar 26, 2020

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Wow!! Thanks so much for that fabulous in depth answer!! (Which, incidentally, was marked as the answer before I even had a chance to get back to it. Not sure how that works.)

 

Another question in regard to manually tagging. The files are arranged by parts, each part/file has muiltiple chapters. I imagine I should have story tags (Role of <Sect>) around each of those chapters, but when I manually apply the story tag to the text in InDesign it doesn't come out tagged as such. The only Story tag is around the entire flowing InDesign story.

 

I'm guessing that if I break the InDesign stories at the chapters I'll get multiple stories (true?) but is there any other way to acheive the multiple stories?

 

Thanks again!
Ken

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Mar 26, 2020 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
Mar 30, 2020

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First, let's review the purpose of the "grouping" tags (also called "container" tags). None of them are required at this time, other than the root tag <Document> that contains the entire PDF no matter how long it is.

 

You can view the current set of standard tags for accessible PDFs at https://helpx.adobe.com/acrobat/using/editing-document-structure-content-tags.html#standard_pdf_tags. There isn't anything called a "story" tag.

  • <Part> is for a major section of a large document. Good example: it contains all the individual tags in one chapter of a book. Or a department in a newspaper or magazine, such as the editorial page of a digital newspaper. A <Part> can also hold 2 or more chapters in a very large work.
  • <Art> (that's article, not artwork or story) should be the most heavily used grouping tag in a PDF because it identifies each individual story. Examples: a 6-panel folded brochure might have just one <Art> for all the content. A digital magazine would have an <Art> tag for each individual story, and they might be nested inside a <Part> tag to group them within the magazine's different departments.
  • <Sect> is meant to define a small amount of copy that is a subsection of an <Art>. Best examples: sidebars, pull quotes, and a group that contains a bar chart, its title and its caption.
  • <Div> is not recommended at this time because its usage hasn't been clearly defined by the PDF standard.

The rules aren't hard and fast so that you can flex them to fit each type of document. Make the best decision based on what makes sense for your document.

 

Often, InDesign doesn't set these tags correctly and tends to put everything into <Sect> tags...way too many, in fact, and in an illogical pattern. You might want to tweak the grouping tags once the final PDF is exported.

 

Depending upon which version of InDesign you use, you'll get a different series of grouping tags. Generally from 2020, you'll have this pattern:

<Document> (the root tag required for all PDFs)

     <Art>

          <Sect> (which contains the first frame or the first threaded story)

          <Sect> (the second frame or second threaded story)

 

If you use the Articles panel, each artical will be tagged with <Art>.

 

Hope this helps.

 

Bevi Chagnon | Designer & Technologist for Accessible InDesign + PDFs | Books @ www.PubCom.com/books — NEW! Accessible InDesign + PDF

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Mar 30, 2020 0
Contributor ,
Apr 03, 2020

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Thanks again! After an hour of searching and trying things I have what should be my last question (sorry! and thanks in advance).

 

Is there a way to set alternate text on a figure but NOT have it read the figure text?

 

The book has, for instance, sheet music placed in InDesign as a PDF. When that is read out loud it makes little sense, as one might expect. If I set Alt text (in InDesign or Acrobat) the Alt text gets read but so does the figure. If I tag the figure as an artifact in InDesign (haven't played with that in Acrobat) it doesn't ready ANYTHING, including the Alt text.

 

Is there a way to set text want read but NOT read the figure text?

 

Many thanks, yet again.

Ken

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Apr 03, 2020 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
Apr 03, 2020

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"Is there a way to set alternate text on a figure but NOT have it read the figure text?"

 

That depends on the software that is used, the build in read aloud from Adobe Pro is not the norm, do not use that to 'test'.

If you need to, export as a PDF, then convert to outlines in Acrobat with Preflight (not do it in InDesign itself) and place that.

However, there is much discussion on this topic and many feel, that if there is text in the image (like a plan, or indeed music) that should be read as well of course.

 

If you use VIP Reader (a reader used by many that are not totaly blind but visualy impaired) you can also set 'Alt text' in the second Tab (Tagged PDF) not in Alt text itself, in that case VIP reader will show it as actual text in the document itself and will not show the image (Note: you need to anchor the image however in a paragraph that has the correct tag, like H1, H2 or just P, otherwise it will not work!). Software to read out loud will do what you want if used in VIP Reader.

https://www.szblind.ch/szb, the use VIP_PDF-Readerenglish.zip

 

That said, please forget about CS6, it has many many many faults in producing tagged PDF, use at least CC 2018...

 

And creating a real valid tagged PDF needs much and much more than a simple export from InDesign like you are doing now...

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Apr 03, 2020 1
Contributor ,
Apr 03, 2020

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Yeah, I've upgraded the files to 2019.

 

Yes, I would certainly agree that some things (mabe most) should be read, a few of the figure in this book, however, just don't read well and are more confusing when read, in particular that particular piece of sheet music.

 

Is there a "norm" among readers? Maybe, where there is alternate text it DOESN'T read the figure?

 

Thanks very much for the post, I'll check out that link.

 

Best,

Ken

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Participant ,
Aug 21, 2020

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"Often, InDesign doesn't set these tags correctly and tends to put everything into <Sect> tags...way too many, in fact"

This has been driving me crazy. Good to know that it's not because I was doing something wrong. The other thing I notice in InDesign 2020 is that all my tables seem to end up in list tags. Seems like a nightmare that there's so much stuff to fix everytime I make a change to the InDesign file.

What I'm finding really challenging is a table that spans across multiple pages. It's one table in indesign, on export, the pdf contains two table tags. In the acrobat tag editor i can move all the rows together into one table tag in the tag editor, but acrobats reading order tool discombobulates when I do that. The reading order tool no longer shows that part of the table on the second page as a table. It calling cells spans even though everything looks right to me in the tag section now.

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Aug 21, 2020 0