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Re: address tag

for

From: Alastair Campbell
Date: Nov 30, 2006 4:40AM


> Is the address tag good for accessibility?

I would say it's fairly ambivalent at the moment with regards to
accessibility. Not harmful, but not useful either.

With regards to 'should I use it?', I would split this into three
questions:
1. Is there anything useful about address tags for accessibility in the
specs? (No.)
2. Do any current user agents do anything special with it? (Not that I
know of.)
3. Is there any likely future use? (Unlikely.)

For questions one and two: It is a tag with a confusing past, which has
lead to it being used in different ways, and User-Agents not making any
use of it.

The address tag would seem appropriate for the type of uses that
Microformats are being used for, such as being able to copy contact
information from a web page straight into your addressbook.

The reason I don't think it is likely to be much use in future is that:
- Microformats don't use it for marking up addresses (see why here:
http://tantek.com/presentations/2005/09/elements-of-xhtml/#slide5).
- HTML 5 doesn't specify it as general contact information markup
(http://www.whatwg.org/specs/web-apps/current-work/#the-address)
- Neither does XHTML 2
(http://www.w3.org/TR/xhtml2/mod-structural.html#sec_8.1.).

Both HTML 5 & XHTML 2 define it as contact information for the document
or section of a document.

Since that isn't the general use that most people consider it for
(marking up contact information), it is unlikely to be utilised by User
Agents for contact information. The address element is likely to be
trapped in a spiral of non-use.

Personally, I'd go with microformats.

For a quick fix for the italics, just apply this in the CSS:
address {font-style: normal}

Kind regards,

-Alastair

--
Alastair Campbell | Director of User Experience

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