[whatwg] Proposal for a link attribute to replace <a href>

Ernest Cline ernestcline at mindspring.com
Mon Jun 2 19:04:31 PDT 2008

-----Original Message-----
>From: Anne van Kesteren <annevk at opera.com>
>Sent: Jun 2, 2008 5:39 AM
>On Mon, 02 Jun 2008 05:26:40 +0200, Ernest Cline  
><ernestcline at mindspring.com> wrote:
>>> The <a> element can already do this and it would be backwards  
>>> compatible.
>> Backwards compatible with some user agents but not with the specs.
>Sure, but <anchor> is not backwards compatible with specs or user agents.

That might be a reason to adjust the spec for <a> to have it match current behavior, but in my opinion it would be better to provide for the block/inline distinction to be handled with recourse to CSS by having separate elements as is the case for <div>/<span>.  There are alternatives to obtain this behavior in old browsers without using <a> in a block context, so the loss of backward compatibility would be a minor issue at most.

That said, adjusting the spec to have <a> follow current behavior would be better than leaving the spec as it is and not have any spec compliant method to provide a block level hyperlink without the use of scripting.

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