W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-html@w3.org > November 2007

Re: Feedback on the ping="" attribute (ISSUE-1)

From: Jon Barnett <jonbarnett@gmail.com>
Date: Mon, 12 Nov 2007 11:18:12 -0600
Message-ID: <bde87dd20711120918g77105edew8fa3a19828ea6932@mail.gmail.com>
To: "Boris Zbarsky" <bzbarsky@mit.edu>
Cc: "Mark Baker" <distobj@acm.org>, "public-html@w3.org" <public-html@w3.org>

On Nov 8, 2007 5:50 PM, Boris Zbarsky <bzbarsky@mit.edu> wrote:
> The expectation is that unless you've typed in a credit card number you can
> click _anything_ without fear, from what I've seen.  Again, the difference
> between GET and POST is just not something users know about (or much care). I'm
> not sure they should need to, either...

Sorry if I'm beating a dead horse...  (I'm just reiterating your point...)

Users do indeed know the difference between a GET and a POST after the
fact - when they press the refresh button or the back button.
Browsers generally display a warning letting them know that this
request contained POST data and it may not be safe to repeat the
request because that data would be re-posted (credit card numbers and

This is precisely why POST is appropriate for @ping.  The browser
shouldn't repeat the request without explicitly warning the user.  The
browser can still follow the destination link - it's a GET request,
but it shouldn't automatically resend the ping request, because it's a
POST and it may charge the advertiser money.

The only method more appropriate would be a hypothetical unsafe method
with better semantics and that doesn't allow a message body.  But it
would still have to be "unsafe".

I'm don't understand the concerned discussion over it being a quiet
(not silent) POST request because it doesn't have a body.  If there's
a concern over sending such a quiet POST request, then @ping should be
disabled entirely (which should be an option).  Even then, the concern
has nothing to with the method of the request, but the existence of
the request - you click one link one time and multiple requests
happen.  As long as that concern is dealt with, I don't understand the

Jon Barnett
Received on Monday, 12 November 2007 17:18:22 UTC

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.3.1 : Thursday, 29 October 2015 10:15:28 UTC