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[Bug 7105] New: Default fallback behaviour for unsupported tags in browsers!

From: <bugzilla@wiggum.w3.org>
Date: Wed, 15 Jul 2009 06:26:17 +0000
To: public-html@w3.org
Message-ID: <bug-7105-2495@http.www.w3.org/Bugs/Public/>

           Summary: Default fallback behaviour for unsupported tags in
           Product: HTML WG
           Version: unspecified
          Platform: All
        OS/Version: All
            Status: NEW
          Severity: enhancement
          Priority: P1
         Component: HTML5 spec proposals
        AssignedTo: dave.null@w3.org
        ReportedBy: rescator@emsai.net
         QAContact: public-html-bugzilla@w3.org
                CC: ian@hixie.ch, mike@w3.org, public-html@w3.org

I did a search but nothing showed that resembled this idea,
I must admit I have not extensively looked through the HTML5 specs so maybe
luckily this is already in the specs.

A major issue currently in browsers encountering HTML5 is how to treat
unsupported tags.

Should they ignore the opening and closing tags and render the content.
(current HTML behavior)
But this breaks styling, so some many browsers (but not IE?) allow styling of
the content of unsupported tags.

My idea is that all browsers supporting HTML5 or partially HTML5 "must" treat
all unknown tags as if they where <div> tags.
This should ensure DOM trees, CSS styling, and semantics are minimally

This should also (where possible) be retroactively patched into non HTML5

Alternatively HTML5 browsers could also simply keep a list of <div> synonyms,
so that if <section> is not supported it would be treated as a synonym for
later when <section> is supported it would be removed from the synonym list
Such tag synonym lists would be very easy for browser developers to add and
maintain as new HTML5 (and HTML6) tags are defined but not yet

Most browsers today do have such a behavior for certain tags that has identical

So to reiterate:
The specs should state that any unsupported tags must be treated as if they
where <div> tags, unless the unsupported tag is treated as a synonym by the
browser for another tag while awaiting final definition of the new tag's
behavior in the specs.

Does this make sense, or...?

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Received on Wednesday, 15 July 2009 06:26:26 UTC

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