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11-19-2008, 05:07 AM #1
The case for not opening a link in a new window
I almost feel stupid for asking this, but here goes.
For a long time, I have heard that it is considered best practice not to code a website so that hyperlinks would automatically open in a new window; i.e., don't code them with target="_blank" and to let the site visitor decide for themselves if they want to open up a new window or not. Now I find myself in the position of needing a "good" reason I can give to a non-techie-type user why this is so.
Here's a little background: We just deployed a new version of our website at work, converting the code from classic ASP to ASP.NET. While we did this, we took out all the target="_blank" stuff from the pages. Now, we have someone complaining because we altered the functionality of the website; i.e., we no longer have links open in a new window. I need to come up with a good enough reason they will buy so we don't have to re-code a bunch of pages to open in a new window.
What words of advice can you offer?
11-19-2008, 07:05 AM #2
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11-19-2008, 07:41 AM #3
Abduraooft has provided an excellent solution, but the debate rages on. It really is a matter of preference as to open a new window/tab or not. I will offer my opinion
I feel that it should be the users choice how their tabs and windows open, and such feel that links should not open in a new window/tab. If I want to open a site in a new tab, I will simply right click and choose to do so.
Just my two cents,
11-19-2008, 08:45 AM #4
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A good read here on a possible solution that goes along with the idea of giving the user a choice.
11-19-2008, 09:34 AM #5
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11-19-2008, 01:18 PM #6
Thanks, everyone, for your input. It is much appreciated.
Aero, I especially like one particular paragraph on the page you linked to:
I think I've found my reason to try and persuade this person not to add the "new window" code back into our pages. We are state government, and if I'm not mistaken, I believe we are required to make our website accessible to persons with disabilities. The above paragraph makes a very good case for accessibility, in my opinion.Those who oppose this practise [opening a new window] argue that evidence from usability tests demonstrates that some users can become disoriented by the appearance of a new window and confused by the fact that they cannot use the 'Back' button in the new browser window to navigate back to the original website. It is for these reasons that some developers feel that creating new windows is a practise which should be avoided.
Thanks once again to everyone for your input.