W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-html@w3.org > March 2010

Re: Re-registration of text/html

From: Sam Ruby <rubys@intertwingly.net>
Date: Wed, 10 Mar 2010 18:29:06 -0500
Message-ID: <4B982B42.9060009@intertwingly.net>
To: Leif Halvard Silli <xn--mlform-iua@xn--mlform-iua.no>
CC: Henri Sivonen <hsivonen@iki.fi>, Julian Reschke <julian.reschke@gmx.de>, Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch>, HTMLwg <public-html@w3.org>
Leif Halvard Silli wrote:
> But, can I ask you, as co-chair of this WG, what the problem with such 
> an development is supposed to be? Not the '"interesting" Last Call' 
> thing, but by allowing XHTML1.1 to be served as 'text/html'? I bet that 
> most of XHTML1.1 on the web today *is* served as 'text/html', so it 
> should be very close to reality to allow it.

Let's be precise.

A noticeable percentage of the web is served with an XHTML doctype, and 
including a xmlns attribute on the html element that matches the 
namespace defined by the XHTML specification.

I will further observe that a substantial portion of such content is:

   1) Served with the text/html MIME type
   2) Not valid according to the XHTML specification
   3) Not well formed according to the XML specification.

Given this situation, a number of distinct questions can be considered.

(1) Does it make any sense to call invalid, non-well-formed, content 
served as text/html as XHTML 1.1?

(2) Does it make any sense for two specifications using the same MIME 
type to assigning different meaning to the same document?  Co-chair or 
not, as a member of this working group, I personally would object to 
such a situation persisting.

A final set of observations:

My weblog is served as valid XHTML5 to Opera, Firefox, and Webkit.  It 
is served as valid HTML5 to IE and Lynx.  The same content is served in 
both cases.

Choosing a different MIME type has a very real consequence in each of 
these five consumers.

- Sam Ruby
Received on Wednesday, 10 March 2010 23:29:39 UTC

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