From W3C Wiki

Differences between the W3C HTML 5.2 specification and the WHATWG LS

The W3C HTML 5.2 specification:

  • Restricts the author use of the main element to one visible instance of the element per document. Rationale: Improve utility for users.
  • Provides web developers with information about how screen readers interpret the semantics of [1], header, footer, section, aside and article elements. Encourages user agents to provide keyboard navigation for the [2], header, footer, section, aside and article elements. Rationale: Improve utility for users, better understanding of the semantics for web developers.
  • Defines the main element as representing the main content of a document. Rationale: Matches markup patterns used by authors to identify the main content area of a document.
  • Defines the body element as representing the content of the document. Rationale: The main element represents the main content of a document.
  • Provides clarification for authors on the use of list markup in the nav element. Rationale: Improve author advice and user experience.
  • requires authors to use headings of the appropriate rank for a section's nesting level. Rationale: implementation compatibility and improve user experience. Refer to Use h1 to h6 to identify document structure
  • The hgroup element is obsolete. Rationale: Lack of implementations, lack of use cases, promoted markup anti-pattern.
  • Provides author advice on marking up Subheadings, subtitles, alternative titles and taglines. Rationale: HTML does not have a dedicated feature for marking up such semantics, so provides author advice on how to do it using current features.
  • Provides normative text and an example for link type license which advises authors to state in text the scope of document license if it does not apply to the whole document. Rationale: Use of CSS styles are inadequate for conveying the scope of a license.
  • Includes a detailed text explanation of the th element example and related image. Rationale: The example is complex, and extra detail is required to explain information conveyed visually.
  • Discourages use of the title attribute in cases where its content should be available to all/any user
    • makes the use of the title attribute for providing image captions non conforming, as in 18 year history it has not been implemented in an interoperable, input device independent manner. Instead it promotes the use of the figure and figcaption elements for the provision of image captions. The figcaption element content is by default available to all and it conveys a caption role to assistive technology. Rationale: improves accessibility and usability.
  • Conditionally allows using tables as layout aids (if role="presentation" is provided).
  • Provides author advice for marking up breadcrumb navigation as a list instead of a series of links in prose. Rationale: It was reported that users find the grouping of grouping links helpful, although for other users the clear annotation of their current location in the site structure is more important than the navigational options of the breadcrumbs (e.g. user's comment #2 in the mini research calls 'a good example of bredcrumbs' the site in which they are just br-separated lines of plain text with no links at all).
  • Allows usage of person's name as a citation in the cite element.
  • Allows attribution of the quote inside the blockquote element, using footer or/and cite element inside it.
  • Provides detailed per element web developer information on allowed ARIA attributes. Refer to Using ARIA in HTML
  • Encourages developers to provide headings for section and article elements. Rationale refer to Include a heading to identify article and section elements.
  • Provides detailed advice and requirements for providing alt texts for images.