W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-style@w3.org > December 2013

Re: Focus State on the Web

From: Boris Zbarsky <bzbarsky@MIT.EDU>
Date: Fri, 13 Dec 2013 11:31:30 -0500
Message-ID: <52AB3662.2070408@mit.edu>
To: www-style@w3.org
On 12/13/13 10:09 AM, Matt Gaunt wrote:
> What is the reason for the current behaviour and are there any
> accessibility concerns I may be missing? If not could we change the
> spec'ed behaviour to be more in line with Safari where focus is reserved
> for keyboard input?

There are several different things here:

1)  Platform conventions for indicating focus.  These indeed sometimes 
don't indicate focus when something is focused with the mouse, depending 
on user preferences, etc.

2)  Where focus really is.  This can be useful to indicate so that users 
know what will happen if they press enter, for example.

Gecko matches :focus for #2 and :-moz-focusring for #1.  Both have use 
cases, and quite different ones.  I do think it's worth standardizing 
something that matches #1, and I'm sorry we didn't raise an issue on it 
when we implemented :-moz-focusring.

The discussion at 
http://www.gauntface.co.uk/blog/2013/12/09/focusing-on-the-web-today/ 
also talks about what elements should be given focus (as opposed to 
getting focus _indicated_).  The answer to that is that it depends on 
platform conventions.  As you noted, on Mac there is an OS setting that 
changes what things can get focus.  And the Mac rules here are certainly 
different from the Windows rules.  Based on your "Chrome is the only 
browser which will let you focus on an anchor element by default" 
comment it sounds like you did your testing on Mac, with the OS 
preference in its default "Text boxes and lists only" state, right?

-Boris
Received on Friday, 13 December 2013 16:32:02 UTC

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