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[wbs] response to 'ISSUE-144: Make "u" element conforming - Straw Poll for Objections'

From: WBS Mailer on behalf of kennyluck@w3.org <webmaster@w3.org>
Date: Sun, 03 Apr 2011 21:39:01 +0000
To: kennyluck@w3.org,www-archive@w3.org
Message-Id: <wbs-974a62b17de382a962782626d25593d0@cgi.w3.org>

The following answers have been successfully submitted to 'ISSUE-144: Make
"u" element conforming - Straw Poll for Objections' (HTML Working Group)
for Kang-Hao (Kenny) Lu.



---------------------------------
Objections to the Change Proposal to make the "u" element conforming.
----
We have a Change Proposal to make the "u" element conforming. If you have
strong objections to adopting this Change Proposal, please state your
objections below.
Keep in mind, you must actually state an objection, not merely cite
someone else. If you feel that your objection has already been adequately
addressed by someone else, then it is not necessary to repeat it.
Objections: 
I may have weak objection against the proposed text depending on the
following two factors:

1. The use cases of Chinese proper noun marks[1] do /exist/. But whether
they should be addressed by the <u> element is a separate issue without
consensus. Some people feel strong about it[2], but most people don't.
 
2. Whether the HTML WG excludes ebooks as a factor that drives the
development of HTML5, as the proper noun marks are only significant in
ebooks.

As a solution to my concern, perhaps the editor should consider separating
the definition of <b>, <i>, <u> from their use cases, as proposed in [3]
(that was considered by the WG as out of the scope of this issue).

Nitpicking on Aryeh Gregor's objection:

WikiMedia doesn't provide a button for underlining text, but that's the
only one I've ever seen.

[1] http://www.w3.org/html/wg/wiki/UseCasesOfUElement  
[2] http://littlepotato.webfreehosting.net/html-u-removal.php
[3] http://www.w3.org/Bugs/Public/show_bug.cgi?id=12178




---------------------------------
Objections to the Change Proposal for no change there are no new use cases
----
We have a Change Proposal to make no change because there are no new use
cases that require the "u" element to be conforming.  Keep in mind, you
must actually state an objection, not merely cite someone else. If you feel
that your objection has already been adequately addressed by someone else,
then it is not necessary to repeat it.
Objections: 
Fundamentally, I think having <b>, <i> but not <u> is a better
inconsistency then the inconsistency of where use cases exist or not (it
gives normal Web authors a big surprise), so I don't think any argument
based on consistency applies.

I strongly object to the positive effect section. Deprecating <u> won't
help Web authors to migrate to other semantic markup as text-level semantic
elements are very hard to choose from (what's the difference between <em>
and <strong>?), while deprecating <center> has a value because the section
can be main content (no markup), or <section>/<header>/<footer>/etc.

The first paragraph of Ian Hickson's objection is far from accurate as
(even theoretically) the solution with minimum length is <i class="u">
because in a contemporary Chinese page, italic text representing
alternative voice or whatever and proper noun marks can be used in the same
paragraph and there needs to be a way to distinguish between the two.
Practically, it is hard to imagine an authoring UA outputting <i> for the
use cases of proper nouns as this is not backward compatible with non-CSS
user agents and it is too arbitrary to decide on <i> when both <b> and <i>
have the rather broad "stylistic offset" semantics. See [1] for an example
of using <b> for this use case. (Also, <i> was defined in HTML4 as a
presentational element and using the new semantics will break backward
compatibility of a semantic user agent, if ever exists).

I'll let the working group read [1] and decide if we should address the
use cases of proper noun marks in HTML5.

I have certain sympathy about the readability argument, but please note
that the proper noun mark was introduced a long time before Web was
invented.

Response to paragraph 3 in Ian Hickson's objection:

I don't know what {{du}} is there for, but the Chinese entry uses a normal
<u>. I agree that using <u> to address this use case has no consensus,
although <u> seems to be the most natural if it is conforming of course.


<small>Side comments: the working group should try to collect data on
whether <b>, <i> are already recognized as semantic elements and whether
they are really styled differently in existing pages. Otherwise, the
working group should consider the suggestion 3 of [2].</small>

[1] http://www.w3.org/html/wg/wiki/UseCasesOfUElement 
[2] http://www.w3.org/Bugs/Public/show_bug.cgi?id=12178


These answers were last modified on 3 April 2011 at 21:36:05 U.T.C.
by Kang-Hao (Kenny) Lu

Answers to this questionnaire can be set and changed at
http://www.w3.org/2002/09/wbs/40318/issue-144-objection-poll/ until
2011-04-04.

 Regards,

 The Automatic WBS Mailer
Received on Sunday, 3 April 2011 21:39:05 GMT

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