Rant #2: Browser Wars

The browser wars have infected the Pokémon community.

How often haven't we seen this scenario? Somebody posts something such as a screenshot or whatever else that shows they use Internet Explorer, some random person walks in and starts shoving a "Spread Firefox!" button in their face, everybody goes "Yeah, Internet Explorer sucks, use Firefox!" and then the lone Opera fanatic comes and starts screaming about Firefox's crucial flaws and how Opera is much better. Nobody ever answers the thread starter's original question.

I've always found the whole browser wars annoying. When I was still using Internet Explorer, the "Get Firefox!" buttons got on my nerves because I thought "Yeah, yeah, I already know of Firefox's existence, now let me browse in peace." And I still do, even though I've made the switch to Firefox after being fed up with the many annoying things about Internet Explorer.

I believe in Freedom of Browser. If somebody uses a browser that you don't like, too bad. It's really none of your business. If you're a web designer, of course, you can for example design your website so that it won't work in Internet Explorer, but then it's your own problem. You are going to lose visitors, and it was your own choice - if you do, then don't complain.

I like my Firefox, and better than Internet Explorer. Opera used to annoy me with the huge toolbars at the top, but the newest version is much neater and I do like some parts about it, although not others such as its handling of small-caps with relatively small text - the first letter being sharp but the others being all blurry is a bit ugly. Netscape is meh-ish. But that's all my opinion. I use Firefox because that's what I want to use. If a person wants to use Internet Explorer, let them. Why is it any of your business whether that person gets spyware on their computer downloaded through IE or not?

Sure, Internet Explorer makes the life of a web developer hard. But it's Explorer that does it, not the people who use it. I'm all for keeping people informed on the facts, telling them that Explorer isn't the only browser out there and that they do have features it doesn't have - but please don't go around shoving your browser up their noses. Nobody appreciates that, and generally, if something is pushed up another person's nose, the other person is not happy about it.

If somebody asks how to avoid getting spyware, by all means point them to a secure browser. But in cases like the example above, please do everybody a favor and either answer the question or shut up.

Now let people browse the Internet using whatever browser they want, will you?

Questions? Comments? Protests? Contact me.