p. I’ll try to answer most of what’s been questioned or debated.
p. *Chris Botman:* Thank you for noting that relevant information. Jim Dalton touches on this in “comment #28 (Link to comment #28)”:http://www.alistapart.com/comments/qtag?page=3#28. Like Jim says, this fix encourages web authors to start using quotation mark entities with use of the Q element. Since including the quotation marks will most likely be expected by the author in XHTML 2, this fix works well in that direction.
p. *Brent Royal-Gordon:* A server-side solution can definitely be implemented. One like you mention, however, being as it removes the Q tags entirely from IE, will cause unsemantic markup. Likewise, since JAWS is designed for use in IE, it will also pose an accessibility issue. Once the page is processed and the Q tags are replaced with quotation marks, JAWS will no longer recognize that as a quote.
p. *Paul:* How ironic I didn’t find that article on my many scavenges for articles related to the Q element. I did write my first draft on July 15th though, and I see that one was published in August, so that’s why. Originally I came up with this idea on the “DevShed Forums (Link to the DevShed Forums)”:http://forums.devshed.com and I know that an avid poster, “Gary Turner (Link to Gary Turner’s Website)”:http://garyblue.port5.com/, posted an “article (Link to ‘What you need to know about quotes in the HTML page’ by Gary Turner)”:http://garyblue.port5.com/webdev/quotes.html of my findings on his web page soon thereafter and then it seems the idea started popping up here and there before my publication date on ALA.
p. Like Chris Ovenden mentions in “comment #11 (Link to comment #11)”:http://www.alistapart.com/comments/qtag?page=2#11, and as I mentioned in the article, IE7 most likely won’t support the Q element either. Not to mention, I would beg to differ that IE6 is a soon-to-be-obsolete browser, even when IE7 is released.
p. *Mark:* Yes, double quotation marks do appear in text-only browsers, browsers with CSS turned off, or if the CSS is overridden. Personally, I accept the double quotation marks in text-only browsers if it means my IE users get to see quotation marks (with still adhering to semantic markup and accessibility.) Not to mention, the number of people using IE versus text-only browsers is hugely significant.
p. *Jack:* It seems the Q element will be a never ending dispute by many, but I’m hoping to shed some insight on a simple solution - although not perfect, I believe it’s definitely worth using and I’m glad you agree.
p. *Chris Ovenden:* The Q element is neccessary for semantically correct markup and is also neccessary for screen readers. Screen readers _do_ react differently to an open Q tag than to a left quotation mark. Also, quotation marks have many uses, they are not just used for quotations. Like Adrian D mentions in “comment #16 (Link to comment #16)”:http://www.alistapart.com/comments/qtag?page=2#16, quotation marks can be used for slang words, technical terms, book titles, song titles, etc.
p. How does this CSS hack not solve the problem? This fix does work - with a minor fall back of double quotation marks in text-only browsers, browsers with CSS turned off, or if the CSS is overridden.
p. *Al Lemieux:* The Q element is neccessary for semantically correct markup and for screen readers.
p. *Chris Hunt:* My solution is to surround the Q tags with quotation mark entities and include a short CSS hack to remove the quotation marks set by the users browser. In my article, example number 5 does not mention anything about the CSS hack - so no, it is not one of the solutions I suggested not to use.
p. *Mike Cherim:* Thank you. Actually, if IE ever supports the :before/:after pseudo elements before providing support for the Q element, the fix still works. IE will act as the other browsers act now. However, you are right, if the Q element is supported before the :before/:after pseudo elements, double quotation marks will appear. According to the “IEBlog (Link to the IEBlog)”:http://blogs.msdn.com/ie/, neither are yet on the agenda for being supported in IE7.
p. *Steven Paulo:* Yes, you are correct. No one knows when or which will be supported first, and I didn’t want to hold this article back until then because it’s quite useful now (and will be for some time since neither the Q element or :before/:after pseudo elements are currently on the agenda to be supported by IE7).
p. *Brian LePore:* Good Point.
p. *Benjamin Hawkes-Lewis:* First off, Thank you. You make some very valid points. Some of what was mentioned comes down to personal preference though. Every web author has different priorities and as written in the article, this fix works best for me and my priorities (and probably a bunch of other persons). I do not believe this technique is “chaotic” as you put it, nor do I believe including the quotation mark entities should be defined as polluting the semantics of the Q tag. A lot of what you list people to do is advocate for support of the element and other such things. Once supported, that’s all fine and dandy, but people still browsing with older browsers will have the same issue as we have now. Even when IE decides to support the Q element, this fix will still work and should be used until the older browsers are obsolete.