Best Viewed With Any Browser

Campaign for a Non Browser Specific WWW

Best viewed with any browser

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Last Modified 05/04/97

Note: This page was written by Cari D. Burstein to express the sentiment behind the "Best Viewed With Any Browser" campaign. If you were referred here from a web site bearing the "Best Viewed With Any Browser" graphic or text, it means that the site author agrees with the campaign and is participating in the effort to discourage browser specific web design. Read below for more information on what it's all about, and to see if you'd like to participate.


"Anyone who slaps a 'this page is best viewed with Browser X' label on a Web page appears to be yearning for the bad old days, before the Web, when you had very little chance of reading a document written on another computer, another word processor, or another network."

-Tim Berners-Lee in Technology Review, July 1996


The ZDNet AnchorDesk Make-A-Difference Petition

ZDNet has put together a petition asking Netscape and Microsoft to start following standards. This petition will remain live until May 9, 1997. If you agree with their position, please sign the petition.


If you've come to this page, you're probably curious about the "Best Viewed With Any Browser" button on it. Here's my explanation. I am very unhappy with the current trend towards web sites designing only for specific browsers and ignoring others. It's extremely annoying to me to visit a web site and to find that I've been rejected until I come back with Netscape or Internet Explorer. It's also annoying to visit web sites that allow you in with any browser, but rely heavily on tags only supported in a few popular browsers, or leave out support for text browsers.

I would like to reverse this trend. I know I can't change the web by myself, but every little bit counts, and this is my vote for a platform independent, non browser specific World Wide Web. So, I have displayed the "Best Viewed With Any Browser" button to emphasize that I try to create my web sites to be viewable in all browsers, and totally functional. Some pages may look better in some browsers than others, but they should all be readable by any browser. I try to only use browser specific tags in appropriate manners, and only if there's a good reason for their use, and in the cases in which I've used browser specific programming, such as image maps, frames, Java, etc., I have done my best to provide alternatives for browsers that don't support them. Please let me know if you come across anything on my web pages that doesn't work in your browser (be specific about what browser you're using and what didn't work) and I'll try and fix it.

I invite anyone who wants to join in this effort to go ahead and copy the graphic I have created from my web site and use it in your own pages, or to use one of the several graphics provided by other participants in the campaign. If you feel like creating other graphics for the campaign, please do! (and let me know if I can provide that graphic for others to use) I am not a graphic artist and I know the one I created doesn't look great. I would prefer if you linked the graphic to this page, so that people know what it's all about, or create your own page about this campaign, but if you don't want to that's cool with me too.

Here is a sample bit of html you can use with the graphic if you like:

<P ALIGN="CENTER"><A HREF="http://server.berkeley.edu/~cdaveb/anybrowser.html"> <IMG SRC="http://server.berkeley.edu/~cdaveb/graphics/anybrowser3.gif" WIDTH="88" HEIGHT="31" ALT="Best Viewed With Any Browser" BORDER="0" ALIGN="MIDDLE"></A></P>

If you would rather not display a graphic on your site, but would like to let people know that your site is designed to work with any browser, you might want to just add a text link somewhere on your site that says something along the lines of "Best Viewed With Any Browser" or "Viewable With Your Favorite Browser" (or whatever else you want to say). It would be nice if you would link this text to this page or if you would create your own page describing the campaign so that people who want to know about it can find more information, and perhaps design their own sites to be viewable by everyone.

There are two main reasons to put the graphic and/or text on your site if you design web sites that are viewable in any browser:

  1. To let your visitors know that you are making an effort to make your site useable by everyone.
  2. To encourage other people to design their sites so they are viewable in all browsers.

There have been suggestions that I create a list of guidelines to follow for people to use the button on their pages. I don't want to do this because I know that every situation is unique, and what is inappropriate for one page is totally necessary for another. I will make some suggestions though:

These are just a few tips on making your site more friendly to others. I hope you'll join in the effort to discourage browser specific web design.

Let me know if you have any questions, comments, or suggestions at cdaveb@server.berkeley.edu.

For more information:

Other sites with pages related to this campaign:

Other graphics designed for this campaign (Find the one that's right for your page)

Web Sites Participating in this campaign (Warning- it's a long list. if you're not listed and you want to be, please mail me to be added)


Cari D. Burstein - cdaveb@server.berkeley.edu