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Working Group Decision on ISSUE-103 srcdoc-xml-escaping

From: Sam Ruby <rubys@intertwingly.net>
Date: Wed, 13 Oct 2010 06:22:48 -0400
Message-ID: <4CB58878.9020904@intertwingly.net>
To: HTML WG <public-html@w3.org>
Here is the decision.  The chairs made an effort to explicitly address 
all arguments presented in the Change Proposals on this topic in 
addition to arguments posted as objections in the poll.

*** Question before the Working Group ***

The current HTML5 draft defers to the XML specification for the 
documentation of the srcdoc attribute.  Some Working Group members have 
questioned whether or not it would be helpful to spell out the 
characters that need to be escaped.

This scope of this decision is specifically on how the existing 
attribute is to be specified in the HTML5 specification.  A section 
below details what arguments were not considered, a number of which were 
not considered due to scope reasons.

== Uncontested observations:

* Escaping in XML is more complex
* Target audience is for people who are authoring serializers
* Referencing the XML specification makes sense

None of these were decisive.  There were people who supported either of 
these proposals even after taking these facts into consideration.

== Summary of Arguments:

Once we put aside the uncontested observations, what is left is whether 
or not the rules are long or useful.

For Documenting: this proposal contains two sentences containing 54 
words, and includes a specific reference to the XML specification, and 
asserts that the addition of this note would provide "more clarity".

For Deferring: this proposal contains a single sentence containing 23 
words, contains a generic reference to the XML specification, and 
asserts that the target audience would be "less likely" to need this 
guidance.

In the context of the HTML5 specification, an addition of 31 words is 
not found to be long, and a specific reference to be more helpful than a 
general reference.

"Less likely" was found to be a weak argument.  Unlike "parity" which 
was eliminated as a consideration (see below) "more clarity" was also 
found to be a weak argument, just a slightly less weak one than "less 
likely".

*** Decision of the Working Group ***

Therefore, the HTML Working Group hereby adopts the Change Proposal to 
document the characters that must be escaped for XML in the srcdoc 
attribute.  Of the two Change Proposals before us, this one has drawn 
the weaker objections.

Bug 8806 is to be reopened and marked as WGDecision.

== Next Steps ==

The editor of the HTML5 specification is directed to make this change.

== Appealing this Decision ==

If anyone strongly disagrees with the content of the decision and would 
like to raise a Formal Objection, they may do so at this time. Formal 
Objections are reviewed by the Director in consultation with the Team. 
Ordinarily, Formal Objections are only reviewed as part of a transition 
request.

== Revisiting this Issue ==

As this issue is narrow, the documentation for XML is both available and 
stable, and ample opportunities have been provided for people to review 
the various proposals, it is difficult to imagine cases where new 
information could be provided which would cause this issue to be revisited.

However, as the markup syntax was not considered to be within scope of
this issue, concrete suggestions for alternate syntaxes, in the form of 
bug reports, continue to be welcome.

== Arguments not considered ==

a) Whether or not there is a use case for this attribute

    That is the subject of ISSUE-100

b) Whether an alternate syntax would be better for this use case

    No concrete proposal has been put forward

c) Balancing considerations for text/html and application/xhtml+xml.

    The spec currently contains significant descriptions of text/html at
    a syntax level for which "balanced" descriptions is not provided.
    No evidence was presented "balancing" is necessary or represents the
    consensus of the working group.

d) The note may be incomplete or misleading.

    The spec currently contains numerous notes that may be incomplete or
    misleading.  No evidence was provided that all such helpful
    descriptions should all be removed, and the evidence that this
    particular case is to be considered "remarkably complicated" was not
    found to be strong.  Anyone who has any reason why this or any other
    note is "incomplete or misleading" are encouraged to file bug
    reports.

e) CDATA attributes

    No concrete proposal was put forward.  If there the description is
    incomplete or misleading, bug reports should be filed.

f) "define the extra rules that applies to HTML DOM equivalent XHTML"

    That's the subject of a separate document.
Received on Wednesday, 13 October 2010 10:23:21 UTC

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