The Webdesigners Arch Fiend: IE6

I just read this article: http://www.usabilitypost.com/2008/09/05/drop-ie6-support-give-people-a-reason-to-upgrade/.

When I read through all those comments saying something along the lines of “You cannot tell a user to switch browsers! Just make the site work for the user and stop whining!” I couldn’t help but feel sorry for these guys. Either they are afraid to have to learn new stuff (“new flashy features”) or … well that’s the only reason I can think of really.

Of course you cant just drop support for IE6 on your site and close out those users. But who says you have to make sure s/he doesn’t even realize s/he’s on a browser that should have been dead and buried years ago? I actually rather like lynx you know. Does your site work in lynx? What do you mean you never tried? You might just have lost a customer there.

Tell the client that making the site look on IE6 the same as on a remotely modern browser will cost time and money - lots of it. Ask if it would be enough to just make it work/look okay and display a notice to upgrade that dreaded thing. If not: charge them for it big time!

Sorry I can’t link to it directly so I’ll just quote the comment that made me nod my head in agreement:

Shoghon:

I am being paid to know more about the web than my customer. He is paying for my expertise. I don’t pretend to know what my auto mechanic is doing specifically and stand over his shoulder giving him instructions on how he’ll make a repair.

It seems a lot of people struggle with this concept. We are professionals. Our job is to not only know what we are doing, but to be able to clearly communicate why we are doing it.

We shape the industry. If we let our customers dictate everything we’ll end up with 2 billion blog-sites and ’swiss army knife’ styled messes.