It’s been a long time coming, but as of today the standards of accessibility expressed in the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines are officially updated.
A W3C recommendation is the most final state a document can reach in the W3C standards system, and should now be considered the standard document for accessibility, superceding WCAG 1.
A W3C Recommendation is a specification or set of guidelines that, after extensive consensus-building, has received the endorsement of W3C Members and the Director. W3C recommends the wide deployment of its Recommendations. Note: W3C Recommendations are similar to the standards published by other organizations.
Although there has been a great deal of controversy over the past few years concerning the validity of the WCAG 2 revision, the final document has managed to deal with the greater proportion of problems. Not everything, certainly — but expecting perfection in such a vast area of concern is, frankly, an unrealistic concern.
Jared Smith recommends reviewing the original draft from January 2001 to make comparison — could be entertaining! However, if you’ve got limited time to spend, now is definitely the time to make certain you’re thoroughly familiar with the new standard for web accessibility. It’s actually final.