[whatwg] <comment> element

Benjamin Hawkes-Lewis bhawkeslewis at googlemail.com
Tue Sep 6 12:28:00 PDT 2011

On Tue, Sep 6, 2011 at 8:02 PM, Jukka K. Korpela <jkorpela at cs.tut.fi> wrote:
>> For example, a system might aggregate a user's comments across
>> multiple comment-points.
> How would that be *independent* reuse and syndication? A comment does not
> become any more self-contained when considered as a member of the set of one
> user's all comments.

It's reused in a different context (to see what someone has said).

This seems a fairly straightforward example to me?

> Self-containedness is relative. But this does not mean it is empty concept.
> And if it were, why use it at all? Surely there is a difference between,
> say, a blog entry or a newspaper article carefully crafted to stand on its
> own, so that you can read it as such and take a position on it, and a
> typical blog comment or a comment in an online news system where nobody
> expects your comments to be in any way understandable outside the context.

One can draw all sorts of distinctions; not all of them need to be
expressed in markup.

>>> Such arguments could be used against _any_ new markup elements (and
>>> almost
>>> any existing elements - do we really need much more elements than<a>
>>>  when
>>> we can use metadata, styling, and scripting? :-)).
>> Certainly, but that doesn't reduce the force of those arguments one iota.
> It does. An argument that would, if it were relevant, apply to all new
> proposals and even most existing elements is not interesting.

The discussion needs to be had about all new feature proposals. In the
case of some other elements, this argument by showing that the feature
does solve the problem better than other solutions.

>> If the claim is we need to solve a user problem, and we have existing
>> tools/features that solve that problem, then we should ensure any
>> features proposed would solve it significantly better than those
>> existing tools/features.
> Which "user problem" in that sense does _any_ of the new elements in HTML5
> solve?

<nav> and <article> can be used to allow users to skip navigation,
move to the next block of self-contained content, or move to the next
content of the page.

<section> allows authors to express heading levels beyond 6 (and thus
allow users to navigate by such headings), and more easily put content
from disparate sources together (making it less likely users will be
presented with an incorrect heading order).

I'm not sure what user problem <footer> solves, but it's not important
to my argument that HTML5 as it stands is perfect.

We should be removing elements that don't solve problems, not adding more.

(Note I am not saying that <comment> does not solve problems - I
haven't decided that yet. I'm saying we should solve problems and that
if we're proposing new markup we should evaluate it based on how it
solves problems.)

Benjamin Hawkes-Lewis

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