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

Re: Proposing <indent> vs. <blockquote>

From: Murray Maloney <murray@muzmo.com>
Date: Tue, 17 Apr 2007 00:45:19 -0400
Message-Id: <>
To: public-html@w3.org

At 11:46 PM 4/16/2007 +0100, Benjamin Hawkes-Lewis wrote:
>Murray Maloney wrote:
>>Even so, I don't think that we could identify a single meaning for the 
>>that is represented in presentation by a deeper margins. The meaning is 
>If <indent> ever has any meaning, then it will be necessary for assistive 
>technologies to expose <indent>'s presence, will it not? Yet earlier Mike 
>seemed to imply screen readers could ignore <indent>:
>>The problem you are ignoring is that screen readers would do better to 
>>ignore presentational markup than to recognize improperly used semantic markup.
>So again, you and he appear to be talking about very different animals.

Not at all. Now I am starting to think that you are either being obtuse
or you are playing with me.

The way I parse his statement is: It is better (read safer) to ignore 
<indent> than
it is to trust that a <blockquote> is in fact a quote.

In fact, screen readers or braille systems could safely ignore <indent>.
But they could also provide a cue to enable the reader to delve more deeply
into the subject or skip ahead in the narrative.

>>The meaning may well be: this is how my boss/teacher wants it to look.
>Purely presentational effects are what styling languages are for. [...] we 
>should be encouraging people to think about what they are writing [...] 
>they have (I believe) a moral duty [...] [to] maximize accessibility [...] 
>not reducing employees or students to mindless automata [...] Web 
>communication tools like HTML should require authors to be specific 
>/enough/ to communicate effectively with their audience. Otherwise, such 
>tools are not fit for purpose.

Please excuse the liberties that I took in editing what you wrote, but I 
that you should see some of what you wrote. I wonder why you think that you
have any right to assert moral authority over how anybody communicates.

It is clear to me that there is no profit in trying to discuss this with 
you any further.
You are convinced of your opinion, and it seems to be part of a belief 
system for you.

I am convinced of my opinion because I have worked with markup for over 30 
I am familiar with what people will and won't do -- and education is no remedy.
People who need semantic markup will use it. People who don't will not.
Path of least resistance and all that.

So, I think that you and I have had our chat. Time to move on now.


Received on Tuesday, 17 April 2007 04:54:30 UTC

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.3.1 : Thursday, 29 October 2015 10:15:18 UTC