[whatwg] Customize HTML5 forms placeholder style

Ashley Sheridan ash at ashleysheridan.co.uk
Mon Feb 22 15:30:50 PST 2010

On Mon, 2010-02-22 at 14:21 -0500, Aryeh Gregor wrote:

> Okay, I think the requirement for a solution here should be: authors
> should not have to worry about their inputs looking bad if they
> recolor them without taking placeholders into account.  The
> placeholder can't just take on the same color as normal user input,
> but also can't stay gray when it's now on a black background or
> something.  (My previous suggestion failed on the latter count.)
> The only good way I can see to do this is a new text-opacity property,
> which gets multiplied by the opacity given by the color property (or
> else replaces it, either way).  We could then add a :placeholder
> pseudoclass, or a :no-value/:empty-value/whatever pseudo-class, either
> way, and use :placeholder { text-opacity: 0.6 }.
> But it seems excessive to add a whole new CSS property.  Does anyone
> have any better ideas?  Or do we just require authors who are using
> placeholders as well as recoloring their inputs to manually recolor
> the placeholders too?  I'm not sure if that's reasonable.

I think it's perfectly reasonable if they decide to use colours that
differ wildly from the 'norm'. They are used to setting the color value
when they set the background-color (although not always the other way


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