Change Proposal for ISSUE-140
Conformance to HTML should not have versions.
As previously resolved HTML is a language without versions. Introducing versions for conformance goes against this idea and will give the impression there is a difference between an "HTML5 conforming document" and an "HTML6 conforming document". The suggestion in the Change Proposal that applicable specifications could define their own terms will lead to a myriad of definitions related to HTML conformance and will not make the situation any clearer than simply using what is there today.
Additional points yet to be properly documented herein:
- Naming it "conforming HTML5 document" vs "conforming document" is a non-issue, since naturally the spec defines documents that conform to itself — adding "HTML5" to the term is merely a tautology. All that adding an explicit name to this is going to do is make editing the spec more of a pain for the editor, since the WHATWG has moved away from "HTML5" but is using the same source document.
- Explicitly differentiating conformance to the spec alone (presumably actually the spec plus all its dependencies) from conformance to the spec and other established relevant specs disenfranchises the other specs. For example, it means that people who use RDFa have to convince their target market that it's ok to use "HTML5+RDFa" rather than just saying that RDFa is conforming in HTML5.
By not introducing versions in HTML conformance we keep it clear HTML does not use versions and we prevent the need to introduce lots of definitions around HTML conformance.