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[Bug 9349] New: Make <nobr> element conforming

From: <bugzilla@wiggum.w3.org>
Date: Sat, 27 Mar 2010 21:52:57 +0000
To: public-html-bugzilla@w3.org
Message-ID: <bug-9349-2486@http.www.w3.org/Bugs/Public/>
http://www.w3.org/Bugs/Public/show_bug.cgi?id=9349

           Summary: Make <nobr> element conforming
           Product: HTML WG
           Version: unspecified
          Platform: PC
        OS/Version: All
            Status: NEW
          Severity: normal
          Priority: P2
         Component: HTML5 spec bugs
        AssignedTo: dave.null@w3.org
        ReportedBy: mjs@apple.com
         QAContact: public-html-bugzilla@w3.org
                CC: ian@hixie.ch, mike@w3.org, public-html@w3.org


The <nobr> element is obsolete in HTML5, with the indication that authors
should "Use appropriate elements and/or CSS instead.".
http://dev.w3.org/html5/spec/Overview.html#nobr

In the rendering section, <nobr> is recommended to be rendered as if with a CSS
property of "white-space: nowrap":
http://dev.w3.org/html5/spec/Overview.html#punctuation-and-decorations

There is no other element that has the same default rendering, so there is no
more appropriate element to use. CSS could be used instead. However, the <pre>
element, which results in rendering as "white-space: pre", is conforming and
considered a semantic element. Its semantics are "a block of preformatted
text". <br> is also conforming, with the semantic meaning of "a line break".

<nobr> should be considered just as semantic as <pre> or <br>, with a semantic
of "a block of text with preformatted line breaks."

Also, the usual arguments against presentational markup do not apply. Use of
<nobr> does not harm accessibility, or necessarily result in less compact or
less maintainable markup. Text placed in <nobr> is likely to have special
semantics that make the in-text line breaks essential, just as for text in
<pre> all whitespace is semantically essential.

In addition, <nobr> is commonly used on popular sites. At time of writing, it
is known to be used on at least 4 of the top 15 Alexa sites:
<http://www.w3.org/html/wg/wiki/ConformanceErrorStudy>.

It would be preferable to make this common error into a non-error, if there is
no material benefit to banning <nobr>.


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Received on Saturday, 27 March 2010 21:53:00 GMT

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