[whatwg] Attribute proposal: <video autostart>

Martin Atkins mart at degeneration.co.uk
Mon Mar 19 02:07:46 PDT 2007

Alexey Feldgendler wrote:
> Automatic behavior in HTML has been traditionally expressed through 
> scripting. It's not hard to write a one-line script which automatically 
> starts playback, but solutions based on scripting are easier to 
> circumvent on the user side (and it's good).
> -1 for |autoplay|.

It's been my experience that annoyances based on attributes and elements 
are far easier to tame than those using script.

For example, it was trivial to remove the effects of target="_blank" on 
links, but harder to tame window.open. Modern UA's block calls to that 
function altogether, causing many scripts to fall over because they 
expect window.open to always succeed.

I'd say in the general case it's far easier to block declarative 
instructions (elements, attributes) in a useful way than it is to block 
imperative instructions (JavaScript statements), because it's much 
easier to reason about what the author was trying to achieve in the 
former case.

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