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Validate, or Don’t!

 |  Interwebs

I have always considered myself an observer. I watch everything — particularly people, because then I can attempt to interpret their behaviour and make little profiles in my head. I love to watch ‘weblog circles’. These are little circles of friends which all link to one another, and then someone in that circle links to another person from another circle who then all tend to link to each other (this is how new weblogs are usually found).

Some of these circles are easier to get into than others. I mean, there are some where you just exchange a few comments and you’re linked already, and then there are those you link to forever and can’t seem to “connect with”. How do you get into these circles without spending countless hours chatting on an IM program (which I refuse to do)?

Anyway, this isn’t about the circles in general, just one in particular: the “we’re validated but don’t preach” circle/clique/club. A few months ago when the validating trend hit the personal site/weblog scene, the majority of my friends validated and starting preaching about those who didn’t, discussing how terrible they were/etc. Then, as with all things, came along the rebels. Those who refused to validate, even though they could. All of a sudden, the preachers realised they were making enemies of those who didn’t validate, and started prattling on about how they’d never said that validating was all that good, that validating wasn’t necessary for a great site/etc. Some people even started writing about how people were getting obsessed with validating and that it wasn’t everything.

Why the heck is all this happening? If you’re into validating; if you can create a page that is considered valid by the recommendations and “standards” set by the w3c — why hide that ability away simply to please other people? If you cannot stand IE and think that those who use it and design for it need a kick up the arse, why not say it? I’m fed up with people arsing about the topic. If you don’t validate — hey, personal choice and all.. but if you do — stand up and be proud. Be proud of the fact that you’ve created a website that is more-than-likely going to be cross-browser compatible. Be proud of the fact that you can close your tags, code in lowercase and give attributes surrounding quotes. Stop sitting on the back row telling people not to make a fuss and then crying when your pages don’t validate. Either be a validator, be proud of that fact and boast it.. or shut the hell up whinging when your coding doesn’t quite make it. You can’t have it both ways.

Jem Turner jem@jemjabella.co.uk +44(0)7521056376

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