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<spoiler> element

From: Jeremy Rand <jeremy@asofok.org>
Date: Tue, 06 Dec 2005 17:48:43 -0600
Message-ID: <4396235B.4050304@asofok.org>
To: www-html@w3.org

I have a suggestion for an element which could be included in XHTML 2.
This is a <spoiler> element.  This element would have the content of a
<spoildesc> element, and a <spoilcontent> element.  The behavior would
be that when the user agent encounters a <spoiler> element, it should
render the content of its <spoildesc>, and provide a way for the user to
activate the <spoiler>.  Once the <spoiler> is activated, the user agent
should show the content of the <spoilcontent>.

This would be useful in many situations where the user might not want to
see certain content.  Examples are:

Spoilers of the plot of a book or movie
Offensive language
Disturbing medical photos
Pornographic or otherwise not-safe-for-work content
The answer to a riddle
Content with flashing lights that could cause epileptic seizures

I'm sure there are more examples of uses for <spoiler>, but I can't
think of any more right now.

An example of its usage would be:

<p>Did you hear about the cement mixer that ran over Batman and Robin?</p>
<p><spoiler>
<spoildesc>Activate to see punchline.</spoildesc>
<spoilcontent>It created two new superheroes: Flatman and
Ribbon.</spoilcontent>
</spoiler></p>

I know <spoiler> isn't a very good name for it, since there are other
uses as well, but I can't think of a better name.  I know that <spoiler>
is implemented into a forum-hosting site's posting system (I can't
remember which site); it just displays the content of <spoiler> in
identical foreground and background colors so that you must select the
text to read it.  Also, I realize that this could be done using either
scripting or links, but I think links are inappropriate, since the
content is part of the original document.  I think scripting is
inappropriate, since this has semantic meaning, so I think it should be
a standard XHTML element.

Does this proposal sound good?

Thanks,
Jeremy Rand

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Received on Tuesday, 6 December 2005 23:50:10 GMT

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