There, I said it

  • Words: Andy Clarke

Faruk Ate? in Opera Confirms WebKit Prefix Usage:

I’m left feeling that this is just Browser War II, and what grace we’d regained by switching to Feature Detection rather than UA sniffing will be lost once again as a result of these moves.

With some luck, things will just become better for the users of those browsers who will once more pretend to be someone they aren’t, and us web authors aren’t inconvenienced too much. Meanwhile, it is left—again—up to web authors to invent the tools to placate the browser vendors who gave us this mess in the first place.

I commend Opera for finally admitting — through their decision to adopt WebKit Prefixes — that their real motives are the corporate motives we always knew them to be. That they’re not the standards champions they pretend to be. That they’re prepared to break a fragile, but working standard for corporate gain.[1]

What their actions also tell us is that despite hiring some of the best minds in the business[2], their strategy of evangelists and ‘web openers’ has resoundingly failed to convince developers that Opera is relevant. If that wasn’t the reality, they would have no need to adopt another platform vendor’s prefixes.

What Opera forgets in its colossal arrogance, is that vendor specific prefixes were intended to give developers a choice to support a browser platform — or not.

We were never ‘required’ to include a full set of prefixes.

Excluding Opera didn’t qualify as ‘invalid.’

If I choose to exclude Opera (or Webkit or Mozilla or Microsoft,) that’s my choice and my right.

1. For the record, I don’t have a problem with a profit motive, just hypocrisy. 2. I don’t have a problem with individual Opera employees either (although many think I do). This isn’t about them.

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