[whatwg] article: do we really need this?

Elliotte Harold elharo at metalab.unc.edu
Wed Mar 7 16:35:26 PST 2007

Matthew Raymond wrote:

>    Would <section role="article"> do? Well, first of all, what would it
> do that a predefined class name wouldn't, since from a markup point of
> view, the only difference is the name of the attribute?

Not much. <section class="article"> is perfectly fine. My mind just 
happened to be in another spec at the moment where there were roles and 
not classes, so I happened to mention role where I probanly should have 
said class.

It's not really a question of whether article makes sense. The question 
is whether it makes *enough* sense. There are arguments for it, but 
they're very weak. I do not see a community crying out for this. I don't 
think it's going to help anybody all that much, and I'm afraid it's 
going to end up like address: a poorly understood, rarely used element 
that's misused more often than it's used properly.

It just doesn't feel like it justifies the space in the spec it takes 
up. :-(

I suspect I could ask the same question of a few other elements as well. 
time and meter come to mind. They at least don't have any obvious 
equivalents already in the spec, and are obvious enough they perhaps 
won't be frequently misused; but do authors actually need these? Will 
they use them?

Elliotte Rusty Harold  elharo at metalab.unc.edu
Java I/O 2nd Edition Just Published!

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