CSS vendor prefixes threaten open web

Minutes from a meeting of the W3C CSS working group have caused major concern in the web design industry, due to the suggestion browsers could start supporting alien CSS vendor prefixes, notably those for WebKit. Prefixes are commonly used in CSS to work with features that haven't yet been confirmed as part of the specifications, and are intended solely as a short-term measure. However, a combination of WebKit not dropping support for proprietary prefixes and some advocates teaching that they should be used (often neglecting to mention one should always include a range of prefixes and cascade to the vanilla property) has left a mess that's led to the new 'solution'.

Standards advocates were quick to react against the news, in broadly negative fashion. Articles appeared from Opera web evangelist Bruce Lawson, developer Remy Sharp, Mozilla developer evangelist Christian Heilmann, developer Lea Verou, WaSP member Rachel Andrew, Adaptive Web Design author Aaron Gustafson, and W3C CSS Working Group co-chair Daniel Glazman, whose post was framed as a call to action. Additionally, Pre-fix the web has asked people to find WebKit-only Github projects, fork and fix them.

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