[whatwg] <a href="" ping="">

Christian Schmidt whatwg.org at chsc.dk
Tue Oct 25 03:26:49 PDT 2005

Ian Hickson wrote:
> The problem at the moment is that the redirect mechanism obscures the
> eventual target URI.
One backwards-compatible way (that doesn't require scripting) to solve 
this problem would be to add a new attribute that specifies the eventual 
target URI:


This would allow the UA to display both (or perhaps the target href
followed by the hostname of the direct href).

To prevent spoofing, the UA should display an error if the actual target 
URI was not the one specified.

Problems compared with the initial suggestion:
- The tracking CGI script should support redirection even for 
WA1-supporting UA's. This is hardly a problem, though (it's one line of 
code in most languages).
- The target URI in the href attribute should be URL-encoded. Some 
people don't know how to do that. It gets even more confusing if several 
tracking servers are visited before the final URI is reached.
- The server hosting the tracking CGI script should be alive.


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