[whatwg] Definition of alt= attribute

Alexey Feldgendler alexey at feldgendler.ru
Fri Jan 20 03:24:38 PST 2006

On Fri, 20 Jan 2006 16:55:43 +0600, Matthew Raymond  
<mattraymond at earthlink.net> wrote:

>> This sounds reasonable. I guess I should change my statement:
>> The alt attrubute should be made optional, and when it's omitted, the UA
>> should try to obtain some useful information from the file name or by
>> other means.

>    I'm not sure I agree. If you look at what you might use <img> for,
> it's almost always presentational, and could therefore be done with CSS.
> The more semantic the image, the more necessary alternate content
> becomes, thus making the |alt| attribute necessary for a truly semantic
> <img> element. If you find yourself using <img alt=""> a lot, it's
> probably because you're not making proper use of CSS, or because you're
> using <img> elements to achieve a presentational effect that is
> currently not possible with just CSS 2.1 (yet may likely be possible in
> CSS 3).

I'm not speaking about <img> with specified but empty alt -- this one is  
certainly presentational, and it's OK to require explicit alt="" for this  
case. I'm speaking about <img> with totally omitted alt, which is  
currently invalid. I propose to allow it and have the user agent derive  
some information from the image URL. This will better reflect the real  
world situation: many authors actually omit alt (which results in an  
invalid page) when they actually should have written it.

Opera M2 8.5 on Debian Linux 2.6.12-1-k7
* Origin: X-Man's Station [ICQ: 115226275] <alexey at feldgendler.ru>

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