Even at a progressive, Web Standards-friendly agency like Blue Flavor, the topic of which browsers to “support” comes up. Clients ask us, “Will our site be supported by IE6?,” for example. And even in the Web Standards community, there’s still a lot of talk about “dropping support” for IE6, and the like.
But doesn’t this whole idea of browser “support” kind of go against what Web Standards is all about in the first place? Because of the way we build sites (and by we, I mean me, Blue Flavor, and most readers of this site), our projects inherently “support” every browser, from Lynx to Mosaic 1.0 to Netscape to IE to Safari to the no-name browser on your crappy flip phone.
And yet, we still talk about browser “support.” What we really mean when we ask if a site will “support,” say, IE6, is “will the site look the same in IE6 as it does in the latest and greatest browser?” But we all know this is a silly question. Of course it won’t. And what’s more, it shouldn’t.
So what can we do about it? How can we move our industry away from this absurd notion of “browser support?” I don’t really have any answers, but I’m interested in starting the discussion.
P.S. I’m also interested to see how someone will twist this into me hating Web Standards.