I18N-ISSUE-44: Block elements with display:inline should get ubi instead of default dir [HTML5-bidi]

I18N-ISSUE-44: Block elements with display:inline should get ubi instead of default dir [HTML5-bidi]


Raised by: Richard Ishida
On product: HTML5-bidi

This is a part of the proposals made by the "Additional Requirements for Bidi in HTML" W3C First Public Working Draft. For a full description of the use cases, please see http://www.w3.org/International/docs/html-bidi-requirements/#blocks-as-separators. Here is the proposal made there:

At one time, all browsers treated block elements that have been given display:inline in CSS as an ordinary inline element for bidi purposes, (i.e. gave no special treatment). One use case for using display:inline on block elements is getting an inline auto-numbered list with <ol style "display:inline">. To get bidi treatment of such use cases, HTML 4 explicitly specified (http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/struct/dirlang.html#style-bidi): "When a block element that does not have a dir attribute is transformed to the style of an inline element by a style sheet, the resulting presentation should be equivalent, in terms of bidirectional formatting, to the formatting obtained by explicitly adding a dir attribute (assigned the inherited value) to the transformed element". The intent was to prevent the bidi ordering within such an element from being affected by the element's surroundings, as it would not be affected if it still had block display. To date, the only browser to implement this specification is Firefox.

Unfortunately, this condition does not go far enough, since adding a dir attribute to an inline element does not prevent it from affecting the bidi ordering of its surroundings in ways that a separate block would not.

A separate bug defining the ubi attribute specifies that the default ubi attribute value for a block element with display:inline shall be "ubi", isolating the element directionally from its surroundings. This is meant as an improvement on the condition mentioned above. Thus, the condition above should be removed from the HTML specification.

A nice side-effect of this change is that when display:inline block element is explicitly given ubi=off, it will be displayed the way it had been before this condition was added to the HTML specification and the way it is currently displayed in all major browsers except Firefox.

These changes do not present a problem for backward compatibility because the HTML 4 specification was never implemented in this respect by most browsers.

Please add comments to bugzilla:

For implementation status see:

IMPORTANT: This issue was moved from our old review tracking system to the new tracker system. For previous mail relating to this issue, see:  http://www.w3.org/Search/Mail/Public/advanced_search?keywords=&hdr-1-name=subject&hdr-1-query=%20block%20elements%20with%20display:inline%20should%20get%20ubi%20instead%20of%20default%20dir&hdr-2-name=from&hdr-2-query=&hdr-3-name=message-id&hdr-3-query=&index-grp=Member__FULL+Public__FULL&index-type=t&type-index=public-i18n-bidi%40w3.org&resultsperpage=20&sortby=date

Received on Monday, 20 June 2011 16:52:50 UTC