[thelist] [css-d] IE 6 news implications

Barney Carroll barney.carroll at gmail.com
Fri Dec 16 12:51:18 CST 2011

> Sounds from your comments that some/many companies feel that IE6 usage is so insignificant as to make accommodating it to be more costly than any benefit gotten from the accommodation.
> Is that the feeling?

I work for a digital marketing agency that churns out a fairly large number of highly involved websites to support the campaigns of a few major brands in the UK.

Because most of our clients are major corporations, they often have direct experience of locked systems running legacy IE, and because we're in a competitive business with big names to please we pride ourselves in being very attentive to the clients' specific wants.

Having said that, what with a lot of people asking for whiz-bang bleeding edge front-end bells and whistles and complete cross-browser parity, we have recently made it a matter of policy to charge 1.5 times the front-end build if IE6 or 7 'total parity' is desired (in practice the figure is always different: some designs do just work with minimal code-forking, in which case we charge far less, while others are incredibly ambitious and precise, and can cost considerably more to perfect across browserland). Of course we build with platform-agnostic accessibility principles and enhance there forth, so we never have sites that are unusable or visually broken, but for things like, for example, GUIs with rotating semi-transparent imagery or somesuch, dedicated legacy IE support is a huge extra workload. 

We've found that announcing that pricing plan up front with the workload explanation, along with our analytics data to indicate the vanishingly small proportion of these browsers' users as a demographic, makes legacy browser work a lot more sane: either the client realises that these users are a minority who do not expect flashy Internet experience and accept that they will have a sub-par experience, or they insist on a lot of hard work and pay accordingly.

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