[whatwg] Interpretation issue: can <section> be used for "extended paragraphs"?
Jukka K. Korpela
jkorpela at cs.tut.fi
Thu Mar 10 10:18:16 PST 2011
Markus Ernst wrote:
> Would it cause serious issues to add the Phrasing Content category to
> these three elements [ol, ul, dl] thus allowing them inside the p element?
I'm afraid it would, and I think that's the reason why the content model
hasn't been extended in HTML5.
<p>some text<ul>...</ul> <div>...</div>
HTML specs up to and including HTML 4.01 and ISO HTML accept this, and
definitely so that the <ul> tag implies a preceding </p>. This means, for
example, that if you have set a background color for the p element in a
stylesheet, it only applies to the block containing "some text", not the ul
If p elements were allowed to contain ul elements, the browser would have to
imply </p> when it sees <div> and would need to treat the ul element as part
of the p element - even if this wasn't the author's intent. We cannot know.
And unlike in current browsers, the background color for the p element would
extend to the ul element.
So this would change the interpretation and, generally speaking, the
rendering of existing pages, in a manner that cannot be assumed to have been
the authors' intent.
Introducing a new paragraph concept, say <par> element, would not have this
problem, but it would have problems of its own. And the good old <p> element
might feel rather lonely and rejected - and oddly named.
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