Italics get used to express important semantic meaning, so unicode should support them
harjitmoe at outlook.com
Wed Dec 16 08:50:56 CST 2020
> For those of us that can recall the exuberance of the XHTML movement,
> <i>, <b> and friends were all deemed to be insufficiently semantic and
> slated to be replaced by <em> and <strong>. Of course, this was a
> distinction without a difference and now we just have extra tags that
> are more verbose and less literal.
Not strictly speaking—although <i> and <b> are back in vogue, <i> is now
only supposed to be used for italics which set text apart in some other
fashion as opposed to emphasising it (which should still be done with
<em>). The distinction may appear “without a difference” for
graphically displaying text in visual clients, but they can represent
considerably different tone changes when reading it out (a relevant
consideration if you are writing, say, an aural client for the visually
impaired), hence using these properly is /theoretically/ more
accessible, though I do not know to what extent that is true in practice
since there's bound to be a lot of deployed legacy, WYSIWYG or
generated-from-Markdown-etc HTML which doesn't make this distinction,
which might preclude relying on it.
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