[whatwg] A plea to Hixie to adopt <main>

Silvia Pfeiffer silviapfeiffer1 at gmail.com
Wed Nov 14 16:23:55 PST 2012

Apologies for misunderstanding - the smiley led me to believe it may not
have been a real concern. I did answer in good faith though, so back to the

You are absolutely correct that an algorithmic approach would still be
necessary to resolve the situation when <main> is not provided in the same
way that browsers create a <body> tag when it's not provided or a <head>
etc. Scooby-Doo seems both simple enough and appropriate for this.

>> I'm sure a lot of other people had to solve this problem as well and have
>> done so in their own special way. Explicit author markup would make such
>> task so much easier.
> I was disagreeing with that point because there's no way to implicitly
trust the author, in the same way that search engines can't trust <meta
> name="keywords" />

Are you fundamentally distrusting the author in all semantic markup? Why
then did we introduce <article>, <header>, <nav>, <aside>, <footer> etc
when we can't trust the author to put the correct content in there? I don't
really see the difference.


On Wed, Nov 14, 2012 at 5:21 PM, Tim Leverett <zzzzbov at gmail.com> wrote:

> > Hope you're not just trolling
> I was just trying to make the point that an algorithmic approach to
> finding the main content of a document would still be necessary with or
> without the <main> element.
> On Tue, Nov 13, 2012 at 7:03 PM, Silvia Pfeiffer <
> silviapfeiffer1 at gmail.com> wrote:
>> On Wed, Nov 14, 2012 at 4:25 AM, Tim Leverett <zzzzbov at gmail.com> wrote:
>>> > Explicit author markup would make such a task so much easier.
>>> Only if every author marked up their code correctly. If some authors use
>>> incorrect markup, then an algorithm would still be necessary for
>>> determining if each usage was correct.
>> Hope you're not just trolling.
>> From a browser perspective, if there is one <main> element and it sits
>> within <body>, that would be sufficiently correct.
>> Whether it's semantically correct for a particular application, that's
>> not something the HTML spec should or could deal with. We don't protect
>> people from putting the wrong text in tags - not in microdata, not in
>> <article> or anywhere else. An application may care - or they may trust the
>> author and if the author cares enough, they will fix up their markup if it
>> doesn't achieve the right goal.
>> But I'm sure you were just trolling... ;-)
>> Cheers,
>> Silvia.

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