Narrator (screen reader) announces some elements as invokable but they are not

By design Issue #11353872


François R.
Mar 22, 2017
This issue is public.
Found in
  • Microsoft Edge
Found in build #
Reported by 1 person

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Steps to reproduce

This issue was filed to track a common feedback we get about Edge’s propensity to report html dom elements are invokable when they are not. In the vast majority of the cases, this is not a bug.

Here are the conditions that will make Edge think your element is invokable

  1. The element has an implicit or explicit role that should be invokable (example: button)
  2. The element has an onclick or similar listener which will be called when invoked
  3. An ancestor element has an onclick or similar listener which will be called when invoked. Documents which listen to some mouse events on the document or body will trigger this situation.

The third condition can cause more elements than desired to be reported as invokable, but is required to ensure a common pattern seen on the web works for people who rely on a screen reader.

The reason this is important is that the element on which the click handler is registered might not be the one for which the click is listened to. For instance, jQuery will add event listeners on body and only fire some logic when the actually-clicked element matches a given css selector. If we didn’t expose the Invoke handler on all elements under an ancestor with an onclick event, there would be no way to fire those events via UIA.

Of course it would be even better if we could know for sure whether or not we should propagate these events down the tree, but there isn’t any way to know this unfortunately, since the browser doesn’t know what the code attached to these events is doing.


This bug will be marked as by design. If you have found a case where an element is marked as invokable and NONE of those three conditions apply, please file a new bug.


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    • Changed Steps to Reproduce

      Changed Steps to Reproduce

    • Microsoft Edge Team

      Changed Assigned To to “Francois R.”

      Changed Status to “By design”

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