[whatwg] Is there any reason for the continued existence of enctype attribute at the form element

Mark Kaplun mark at marksw.com
Mon Oct 12 08:35:06 PDT 2009

Boris Zbarsky wrote:
> On 10/11/09 11:06 AM, Mark Kaplun wrote:
>> Boris, I have agreed with your first response that I don't know enough
>> about all the crazy things that people might be doing, to make this
>> attribute to disappear. However I don't see how changing the default
>> mime type will have any affect on the existing web pages
> It'll change how existing web pages with file controls (whether 
> visible or not) and no enctype set are submitted, right?
Is there any reason why someone will do such a thing by design? unless 
there is some exotic reason, this is an example to a form which do not 
perform its role. In any case the doctype for this kind of old pages 
will not be html 5
>> IMHO this attribute is a bug in the specification which is causing
>> annoyance to any web developer which do not use IDE's to create forms.
>> Changing the default the way I described might create a different
>> annoyance, but in my opinion it will be a much lesser one.
> My point is that changing the default might not be possible in UAs 
> without causing compat issues with existing pages.  It might work, it 
> might not.  It'd be a big risk for whichever UA tries it first.
> -Boris
This is kind of an egg and a chicken problem. Currently the standards 
specifies the "application/x-www-form-urlencoded" mime as default, and 
if the standard remains the same the UA will not be able to change their 

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