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Web Campaign Targets IE 6 Use

A Norwegian Web portal has begun a campaign to kill the use of Microsoft's Internet Explorer 6 browser.

A Norwegian Web portal has begun a campaign to kill the use of Microsoft's Internet Explorer 6 browser. The FINN.no Web site, which helps people find things, is trying to spread the word, claiming IE6 is a burden due to its lack of standards support.

"This is not a campaign against Internet Explorer," states a press release (PDF) from FINN.no. "We only want people to upgrade their web browser to a newer version. The problem with IE6 is that it does not quite follow the standard rules for how it should present the contents on a web page. It also has some security issues, says Erlend Schei, web developer at FIN."

The campaign to upgrade IE6 may be heating up in Norway, but Microsoft appears to feel the same way.

"The most humbling news in all of this is that Microsoft is supporting these websites' decisions to notify users of superior browsers be they IE7/8 or alternatives," wrote Viral Tarpara, an IT pro evangelist, in his blog.

Microsoft has been touting greater standards compliance with its newest browser, Internet Explorer 8, currently available at the Release Candidate 1 stage. General release of IE8 may occur sometime in March, according to a rumor cited by veteran Microsoft watcher Mary-Jo Foley.

The IE8 browser comes with a "compatibility view" button to help Web site authors who may have built their sites to be compliant with earlier Internet Explorer versions. The button toggles between a standards IE8 view of a Web site and an IE7-compatible view for Web sites that aren't quite ready to support those standards.

In terms of the standards supported in IE8, Microsoft claims compliance with CSS 2.1 recommendations issued by the W3C standards body.

Web developers have typically developed their sites with Internet Explorer in mind, mostly because the use of IE became so predominant. The Net Applications tracking site currently estimates that IE holds a 67.6 percent market share over Firefox (22.0 percent) and Safari (8.2 percent) browsers.

Microsoft first released IE6 back in August of 2001, but research by FINN.no suggests that it's still being used by 17 percent of users who visit that site.

About the Author

Kurt Mackie is senior news producer for the 1105 Enterprise Computing Group.

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