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Issue style

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Preserving the rendering style of the target of the annotation is important in several use cases.

  • When the highlight for the target conveys meaning to the user. For example highlighting in green meaning something different to highlighting in red, and then transferring the annotation between systems. Rendering the selected text with a red strike through is often interpreted as "delete".
  • In order to distinguish multiple targets in a textual body. For example, the comment could compare the 'green' area of an image with the 'red' area; meaning the areas that the user currently sees as highlighted in green and red respectively
  • The style may be necessary for ensuring that the rendering of the target area is visible. For example, a page with a black background, or an image such as the night sky, should not have areas drawn with black borders.


  • There has been much discussion as to whether the functionality belongs in the model, or should be somehow implementation dependent ... as ...
  • The interpretation of the CSS is somewhat dependent on a functional model for implementation in which CSS can be applied to the highlight for the target (bounding box on an image) OR the target itself (text background or color).



  • This needs to be explored by the community with implementations and test cases, but the proposal is to leave it as is unless the exploration reveals deficiencies.