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The Life, Times (and Death?) of Internet Explorer 6 (Comic Strip)

In recent years Internet Explorer 6 has become the browser web designers love to hate. Security issues, JavaScript errors and inexplicable CSS rendering quirks have made it the brunt of many jokes. With IE6 in its twilight and big companies like Google dropping support1, it seems like a good time to take a fond look back at our old foe. In this post we’re looking at what Internet Explorer 6 used to be and why its image changed over the years. You can also see the comic in a larger version2.

Further Reading on SmashingMag: Link

Do we need to review our projects in Internet Explorer 6? Can we stop supporting IE6? If not, how do we handle those users who are still using IE6? And if yes, how can we prompt IE6 users to upgrade? Or how do we convince those who don’t allow their employees to get rid of the legacy browser to upgrade? What do you think? We are looking forward to your opinions in the comments to this post!

Part 15

Part 26

Part 37

Part 48

Footnotes Link

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Brad Colbow is a web designer living and working in Cleveland Ohio (USA). He is also the creator of the weekly web comic "The Brads" about two web designers trying to start a small company. You can follow him on twitter here.

  1. 1

    I’d like about 120 minutes of my life back.

  2. 23

    This is great! Finally I have a way to explain IE6 to non-techies. I will just forward this link.
    @ Brad I used to follow your strip. Good to see you are back, I really like your work. You should, if you haven’t already, publish a book. I would buy one!

  3. 24

    Nice comic strip. I wish IE6 will be history for webdesigners in about a year. Even MS stops support for ie6 in their new server products like e.g. Sharepoint 2010.

  4. 25

    I like this site a lot and come here everyday during work to get some inspiration…but that was plain boring. Sorry!

    • 26

      Are you kidding me, Chorts? :) I found it funny and clever – nice work, Brad, nice to see the comic here, at Smashing Magazine!

  5. 27

    Basically the coolest comic strip ever.

  6. 28

    I hate when my Internet Explorer 6 sits at home all day and watches TV and gets hairy. He doesn’t even like to be taken out for a walk anymore if it is around newer websites because he is too old to keep up. My Firefox goes so much faster due to the flames coming out of his rear end.

  7. 29

    Love it!

    It was a great comic to read.

  8. 30

    Brilliant comic, Brad!

  9. 31

    nice work brad!

  10. 32

    Design Informer

    February 11, 2010 2:06 pm

    Excellent comic Brad! Thanks for explaining to us the history of IE6. I didn’t know most of that and it was a fun and interesting read.

  11. 33

    Beautiful comic strip! And it is time for IE6 to stay home and never come out again :-)

    • 34

      If I had it my way I wouldn’t develop for IE6 at all, Unfortunately the market share is too large to deny. The result? We spend far too much time catering to IE6 when we could spend that time productively.

  12. 35

    IE6, scourge for mankind… or… web developers at least.

  13. 36

    I think it’s time for Mr IE6 to retire. He’s had a good and long life, but he’s getting very old now. But because I am nice, I will still lend him a hand in rendering my webpages, so long as he doesn’t mind a little bit of graceful degradation.

  14. 37

    Brad delivers as usual. Awesome cartoon once again, Brad.

  15. 38

    Really? Bush jokes over a year after he’s been out of office? Even Olberman and John Stewart have moved on. It’s just tired.

    • 39

      I was enjoying the comic until the unnecessary Bush joke. Can’t I read anything without politics creeping into it? Give me a break, dude. The Bush-bashing is getting old.

      • 40

        Especially since the chart fits Obama better.

        • 41

          You’re a bunch of crybabies. Go shoot some elks with Sarah. I though it was funny.

          • 42

            Daniel Buchner

            February 12, 2010 7:54 am

            Yeah, gee golly, it sure is nice to have Bush out of office huh! Obama has done us a solid by replacing that chart with a new, multi-purpose one with exactly the opposite curve and a new name: The Inflation–National-Debt–Broken-Promises Chart!

            Yesss! I love stagflation and interest on a national debt that is soon going to exceed our entire yearly GDP! You Demz sure iz smartz!

      • 43

        Come on people, the point is all about how old IE 6 is, it is of the Bush and even earlier era. You guys not following what’s being said or something?

        • 44

          yeah to everyone that whines about the politics can suck my D. its a comic get a fkn life.

          and to all designers/devs it’s your responsibility to stop using ie6 and educate your users if you are going to require them to upgrade. I refuse to support it and have a laundry list of reasons why and I use some JS to alert those on ie6 that they need to upgrade. to all the large companies that can’t see a site in ie6, you need to update your IT policy and get with the fkn program.

          Great comic, thanks!

          • 45

            Ditto. I too put in JS alert that sends folks to upgrade to a nice selection of better browsers. I remember when people didn’t want to upgrade from a DOS interface in the late ’80s!
            Change is good.

            Death to IE6!

    • 46

      Exactly. It was a nice comic until the Bush bashing. There was no need to bring politics into this.

      • 47

        Whether or not you dislike Bush or his administration, it’s a fact of the matter that his popularity declined. Isn’t it always that way, especially in second terms? The president burns himself out from too much campaigning and a ridiculously high-profile, hectic life. Poor guys! Don’t you think we should just fire our presidents as an act of mercy? :o Then they’d have a high-satisfaction but very short term. :D Now everybody’s happy: the people get the high point of the administrations, and the president doesn’t burn himself out completely and leave office in disgrace! I think I’m the best politician on the planet to have come up with that idea!

      • 48

        It was such a nice touch to it that it’s indescribable.

  16. 49

    i love the coach-potato-ie6

  17. 50

    Giorgio Sironi

    February 11, 2010 2:22 pm

    A note: it was not IE6 fighting the browser war with Netscape, but its previous versions 4 and 5.

  18. 51

    Another solid comic/article Brad. Great job!

  19. 52

    Its time is over we should stop designing for it as we had seen in past what developers did with the Win98 after the arrival of WinXP. They stopped developing software with support for Win98.

    I’m not designing anymore for IE6. Its my personal stance and I’m standing on it, already started working on it.

    NO MORE IE6 !!!

  20. 53

    I NEVER comment in Smashing Mag.
    I dont agree smashingmag dropping the support for IE6, cause in my work station this is the only stupid browser i can use.
    But i understand why.
    This is the most AWESOME post in SM history, the only post i can count that bring something to think about.
    I still cant reply to that question, if i should drop or not the support…And thinking about this is a nightmare i cant stand =/
    Wish microsoft did things right just one time..

    Things change…I think everyone should embrance the change and slowly drop the support. Hybrid layouts are still the better choice.

  21. 54

    Christian Schlensker

    February 11, 2010 2:34 pm

    Is Opera playing the part of “The Eye of Sauron” on panel 7? : P

  22. 57

    I tried to explain this to someone in police administration in my city. Their question was: “And what is a browser?” I don’t think even this comic would work for people like them. :(

    But perhaps it’ll work with a friend whom I’ve begging to upgrade since early 2007. Great bedtime comic, thank you. :)

  23. 58

    Marcell Purham

    February 11, 2010 2:36 pm

    That was great haha! Brad always makes the best comics and for some reason it felt like I was watching a movie.

    I abandon ie6 a long time ago and am not supporting it any longer. If my websites look messed up for ie6 then o well because you should of moved on by now :)

  24. 61

    The world needs more opinion on IE6 at this point in time. Its cute… but make a statement. The end is weak.

  25. 62

    Laneth Sffarlenn

    February 11, 2010 2:43 pm

    This is brilliant! I agree with Tai, I’ll be linking this one whenever I come across it as an issue. Thanks Brad!

  26. 63

    May I please have a full-sized wallpaper of the epic IE vs Netscape LOTR panel? Pretty please? :-D

  27. 64

    @ #1. You belong with IE6

  28. 65

    A political joke in a web comic? Really? Because Obama is doing so well? Otherwise it was mildly amusing.

    • 66

      I think it was because the release and decline of IE6 happened almost simultaneously with the release and decline of the Bush administration (2001-2008), so I thought it was quite fitting.

      • 67

        american public

        February 15, 2010 4:32 pm

        yes steve,

        brandon = the entire american public.

        spot on mate. let’s have a geography trivia session over tea, innit? safe bruv.

    • 68

      8 years of that embarrassing moron Bush in the Whitehouse and you won’t even give Obama a couple of years to make an impact? How fickle the American public is. Perhaps Obama should start a few more wars, it seems like you yanks aren’t happy unless you’re invading somewhere none of you can place on a map.

  29. 69

    great comic!! ;)

  30. 70

    I loved that.

    It was refreshing to read something that was well informed and addressed the history correctly instead of crying “OMG IE6 is sh*t!!”

    It’s rather interesting to see why people still use it, to be honest I’ve never had problems supporting it, I usually just simplify my designs for the browser and everything still looks great (and chances are if they’re using an older browser, then they have a slower connection and will thank you for the lighter load times).

    I know a lot of people pin their hopes on the death of ie6, but I find that those people are usually the lazy designers/developers. Rather than seeing it as a chore, use it as a challenge. Learn about why those quirks are appearing, you’ll eventually find that catering for ie6 only adds about half an hour on your development time.

    • 71

      Amber Weinberg

      February 11, 2010 3:14 pm

      That’s not true. I used to support it as well (and it was quite easy for me too), but since many major companies have stopped supporting IE6 (even Microsoft itself doesn’t support its browser) I saw no point to continuing to code for it. It’s probably at the same point 10 years ago when people had to decide whether to continuing supporting IE5…I’m sure there were a few people still using it, but eventually they upgraded. The same needs to happen as well. Has nothing to do with being “lazy”.

      • 72

        I’m going to disagree with you on this. I do see it as lazy, or perhaps sloppy. But it is important to do as the comic mentions and look at your audience. Just because Microsoft no longer support IIE6, doesn’t mean your audience will stop using it. At least have the decency to serve up a viewable website for your users (design blogs need not apply)

    • 73

      …agree with you in almost everything except the half and hour, you must be some kind of devgod…

      • 74

        Haha, not a devgod, I just have a few tricks and expected quirk solutions I can quickly refer to (or even the odd css reset sheet if I’m feeling dangerous – haha!)

  31. 75

    Amber Weinberg

    February 11, 2010 3:03 pm

    Would’ve been a great comic except for the stupid Bush joke. Why not show Obama’s crappy ratings? Let’s stick to web development and design on here please.

    • 76

      Amber, as I previously commented, I think he included that joke because the rise and decline of the Bush administration was almost completely in synch with the release and fall of IE6, timing-wise.

      • 77

        The point is that there was no need to bring politics into the subject, let alone jab a specific political figure. By doing so, the author alienates many readers who supported that political figure, right or wrong. So either the author simply overlooked that cardinal rule, or used the post to fire a pot-shot at a political party. Either way, it tarnished the otherwise great comic and message.

        • 78

          Jim, do you really think that anyone is going to stop reading a web design magazine because a cartoonist made a joke about Bush’s approval ratings?

          If he had mentioned the approval ratings of Britney Spears, would that have been inappropriate too, because it alienates Britney Spears fans? I really don’t see why everyone is getting so sensitive about this issue. A lot of things are mentioned or illustrated in this cartoon that have nothing to do with web design, so the Bush thing is not as out of place as people are suggesting.

          • 79

            Louis: Of course I don’t expect people to stop reading the entire magazine over this–that’d be a silly assertion. But it certainly appears to at least bothered or annoyed some of the readers of this post (as evidenced by many of the comments).

            I don’t think Bush vs. Spears is a fair comparison, because let’s face it, taking a shot at GW is also taking a shot at conservatism and capitalism, which rings home to many more people than Britney can even count.

            In addition to bothering some readers, it has also detracted from the whole point of the post, as evidenced by this continuing debate on the use of politics in technical forums, versus…wait…was the post about again? ;-)

          • 80

            Agustin Amenabar

            February 12, 2010 7:18 pm

            One has to accept that people may think differently than onself and express themselves accordingly. Internet is sort of a free world (excepting China).
            If the autor wants or needs to throw in a political joke, let him, respect that.

  32. 81

    Hurry up and die IE6

  33. 82

    Love the part about Bush.

  34. 85


    February 11, 2010 3:14 pm

    I put a large bold message to IE6 users (conditional comments) saying that the browser is no longer recommended by Microsoft due to security issues and asking them to upgrade to IE8 or something better (like FF/Chrome/Opera). I think I got the idea for Perishable Press.

    I think that at this point the best way to get folks to upgrade is to simply not support it. If enough developers/services stop supporting it people will upgrade. I am so glad to see Google drawing the line too.

    I sincerely cannot believe that anyone is ok looking at the web in that browser. It’s like driving an ’83 Chevette.

  35. 86


  36. 88

    Great work Brad. I love the representation of the IE icon – and happy Clippy overlooking from behind!

  37. 89

    Yawn. I get so tired of people moving this very technical discussion to an emotional level. Drawing anti-IE6 comics, making anti-IE6 music and videos, wearing anti-IE6 t-shirts. Seriously, you could get the impression that IE6 is a dictatorship torturing its users. Why invest so much energy that you could spend so much better? It’s not like IE6 will go away, it’s still going to be around for quite a while, and there’s virtually nothing you can do to make it go away any faster.

    Take it from someone who, with one of the largest client you can work for, was contractually required to support Netscape 4 up until 2005: I celebrated the day when IE6 became the common ground. With cake. I simply fail to see the harm in IE6 co-existing with other browsers. When it comes to authoring, IE6 certainly isn’t ball and chains, it’s more like a kid you have to take by the hand and explain some things more thoroughly.

    Besides, I’m a strong believer in the “Don’t mention the mechanics” principle of web design. That includes messages to the user that his browser is outdated for whatever technical reason. It’s last century’s “best viewed with” message, just reworded.

    • 90

      Smashing Editorial

      February 11, 2010 3:41 pm

      Dear Ed,

      the purpose of this comic strip is mostly educational. We are not saying “Die, IE6, die”; instead, we are trying to explain the development of the browser and the current state of things.

      • 91

        I get the educational intent of the comic (it’s not that subtle, duh). It reminds me of those graphically “clean”, but dreadfully unfunny educational comics our government feels to issue from time to time. And yet I can’t help but thinking that it cannot possibly make any impact. The comic itself says it: Either you don’t have a choice, or you don’t care. The former you can educate as much as you like, the latter won’t bother to read through a lengthy (and, to the technically unitiated, quite unfunny) comic chuck full of technicalities.

        I believe that we have arrived at a point an audience you can educate to actually make a change is virtually non-existant. I believe now you just have to sit it out, let IT departments (who, at this point, would be more than happy to move away from IE6, believe me) elevate their users, let existing old OS and browser installations die out with their machines.

        Which leaves the comic to be a collection of in-jokes for an already educated audience. I wish I remembered the exact quote and who made it: An audience doesn’t applaud because it likes the music, it applauds its own ability to recognize a song. When I look at the comments, I feel that’s exactly what’s happening here.

    • 99

      I promise you, this guy Ed is no web designer. ANYONE who writes HTML, javascript, and most importantly CSS knows why IE6 is such a beast and a horrible mess. From the box model to the lack of CSS2, the lack of proper floats and clears to the lack of proper media tags to the numerous zero day flaws based in ActiveX – IE as a whole, but especially IE, is a web designer’s nightmare. Anyone who is seriously about web designer or programming knows this. If you claim to be a designer and don’t agree, you’re not a very good designer.

      • 100

        As Ed mentioned the “Don’t mention the mechanics” principle I have far more respect from him as a designer. Taking the user experience in consideration is a design perspective. Making sure it looks as good as it works for everyone is a design perspective. From someone who mentioned mostly development issues I’d say you’re not a designer.

        You also could have said everything you did without instigating.

      • 101


        you are absolutely right in your assessment that IE6 is the “worst case” we web designers currently have to cater to. But there’s always a “worst case”. Today it’s IE6, tomorrow it’s Opera 9.0, and the next day it’s the aftermath of Mozilla dropping support for MacOS 10.4.

        My point is that IE6 is not nearly as bad to support as you make it sound. Actually, the CSS part is the least problem when supporting IE6: Bringing the box model, floats (along with the margins), and some more obsucre bugs in line is a matter of a few workarounds. The bigger problems I see in complex web applications’ JavaScript part, I am certain the high-profile applications are having quite a headache with IE6.

        Still, the need for workarounds for a browser’s quirks has always been, and always will be. They come with the trade. I have been a web designer (and quite successfully, I assure you) since 1996. As far as browser incompatibilities are concerned, I could tell you quite a few war stories. Believe me, when I look back to what we had to put up with just half a decade ago, the current situation – yes, including IE6 – is heaven.

    • 102

      @Ed: In your comment you said:

      “Why invest so much energy that you could spend so much better?”

      I think people don’t mind spending so much energy because if it can convince even just 10 people to upgrade to a better browser, it is time and energy well spent (and with over 200K RSS readers on SM, I have a feeling it’ll be more than 10)

      How should people spend their energy? Taking IE6 by the hand? No, thanks! There’s tons of things we can do to make it go away faster. Creating a comic is one of them imo.

      • 103

        @Jon: Agreed to what you say.

        I guess most people who visited SM would have some sort of knowledge on what’s good for them. In the first place, someone who doesn’t bother about Web wouldn’t have visited SM.

        “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.”

    • 104

      “My point is that IE6 is not nearly as bad to support as you make it sound.”

      Your static HTML/CSS pages and brochure sites != modern web apps.

      • 105


        I fail to see where I ever said anything else, quite on the contrary, I acknowledged the pain of web application developers in a former comment. I am fully aware, also from first-hand experience, that IE6 is a completely different beast when it comes to developing complex functionality.

        But thanks for reiterating the difference between web apps providing function and web sites providing information. And why it’s perfectly valid to set requirements for the former, yet absolutely not okay to deny anyone the access to the latter.

        And, finally, on behalf of all web designers who create those “unmodern static HTML/CSS sites” (like, umm, let’s say, Smashing Magazine): Thanks for looking down on us.

        • 106

          You marginalize the difficulty of supporting IE6 based only in your experience of designing static HTML/CSS. You mock developers who can’t move forward because they need to support IE6. You basically say, “Eh, it’s not that hard, why are you throwing a stink? I can do it, why can’t you?” with your statement: “My point is that IE6 is not nearly as bad to support as you make it sound.”

          I think you’re the one who has taken the superior, greater-than-thou tone by trivializing the efforts of other people. “Believe me, when I look back to what we had to put up with just half a decade ago, the current situation – yes, including IE6 – is heaven.”

          So today’s developers have it easy? Not only is that untrue (I’ve been making websites 5 years ago too), but quite insulting.

          The major argument of dropping support for IE6 is not for HTML/CSS-only sites, it’s for modern web applications and dynamic websites such as Gmail, Basecamp, and Digg. Security, cost of development time, performance, and not being able to take advantage of modern web techniques and technologies are all valid reasons to sell your clients into dropping support for IE6. We can live with CSS hacks. But what we can’t live with is memory leaks, security vulnerabilities, and performance issues that must be dealt with just for IE6. You spend a disproportionate amount of your time dealing with that one browser, when there are two major versions of it that’s out and free to download. That type of backwards compatibility is illogical anywhere else but web development.

  38. 107

    I enjoyed the depictions of IE aging, Security and the Vista rocket exploding in space.

    Brad, should you be hiring an attorney after this one?

  39. 108

    Absolutely Brilliant Comic Strip!

    I myself design websites with different style sheets catering for each browser, but I really wish that IE6 could be BANNED from the internet somehow.

  40. 109

    Great visual history of IE6. MS thought they owned the web after the release of this once superior browser, but now almost 9 years later we have seen that nobody owns the web. IE7 and IE8 show progress, but I can’t wait for IE9, it will probably rock he boat again. MS is serious about this one.

  41. 110

    i think u guys just made me develop feelings for an internet browser…

  42. 111

    That comic reads like an Esurance commercial. I’d prefer this site didn’t become a political soapbox either, especially without any legitimate relevance. A lot of things happened over the 160 years we’ve had to deal with IE6. The comic is informative; the Bush bashing adds nothing to it.

    • 112

      How is it Bush bashing?

      I don’t understand why readers are making a big stink over the Bush thing in the cartoon. The decline of the Bush administration is a historical fact (it’s not an opinion, nor is it “bashing”), and it occured at almost the exact same time as the decline of IE6, over a period of about 8 years. I think it’s very funny and fits well as a side joke in the cartoon.

      • 113

        Louis, it’s bashing when a very blatant piece of commentary is added to a comic that has absolutely nothing to do with the topic at hand. Considering a lot of things happened over that period other than Bush’s presidency, I’d say that makes it quite obvious. Personally I would prefer politics stayed off of this web site, and I’ve already stated that. It’s just plain annoying.

        • 114

          Aaron, rocket ships blasting into outer space likewise have “nothing to do with the topic at hand”, but you don’t seem to have a problem with that being included.

          It was just a joke based on a historical fact. I see nothing wrong with including it as a humorous “aside”, the same way that the rocket ship was included, even though it has nothing to do with web design.

          • 115

            I agree Louis. And I thought it did have to do with the topic because they happened at the same time. It adds a nice timeframe to when this was occurring, it was nowhere else evident as to when certain things happened. And this is the “life” of IE6.

    • 116

      Who cares if it’s bashing Bush? It’s a comic, it’s supposed to make you laugh. If you didn’t find the joke funny, so what? Does that ruin the educational aspect of the rest of the comic? No. You see jokes like this all the time, there’s nothing special about this one.

      He is widely regarded as the worst president in American history anyways, and nobody cares about offending him or any of his supporters. It might be annoying, but it’s not going away for just that reason.

  43. 117

    IE 6 is dead – :)

  44. 118

    Great comic!

    Cant believe people are taking it so seriously! lol

  45. 119

    Ronald | Naldz Graphics

    February 11, 2010 5:31 pm

    thumbs up for the comic strip. thumbs down for IE6.

  46. 120

    awesome comic! love it! The beginning is my inner voice~~

  47. 121

    Ah, wonderful cartoon mate. IE6 does have a very large history, which is nicely explained within this comic. A job well done, Brad.

  48. 122

    Ed’s ‘quote’ about audiences applauding their own ability to recognize stuff is quite accurate.

    Moreover, it’s easy to jump a bandwagon. I’d rather be educated about ways to effectively gracefully support IE6 :)

  49. 123

    the best part of this post is if you dont have 970px width, the page crushes on itself and doesnt display all of the content of the comic, in safari anyway…

  50. 124

    Matthew Heidenreich

    February 11, 2010 6:15 pm

    great comic. I can’t wait to stop supporting crappy IE6… i always seem to find a way to make it look decent enough though for it.

  51. 125

    I laughed, I cried, and I loved the Bush approval rating chart gag! Maybe others didn’t, but I found it very entertaining! Thanks!! :)

  52. 126

    Well said. Well done.

  53. 127

    Smashing Share

    February 11, 2010 7:26 pm

    Thanks Brad for wonderful comic. I feel like IE6 will still survive for some more years

  54. 128

    Nice comic strip! The style is so similar to that of Scott McCloud.
    And yes – Go to hell IE6. I just wish it could have been one of those monsters in Dante’s Inferno so that I could take all my revenge with my death’s scythe!! :D

  55. 129

    love this comic

  56. 130


    February 11, 2010 8:43 pm

    Love it! I think I found a new favorite web comic.

    To the people complaining about the Bush joke…You’re assuming this comic was made recently and specifically for this website. I highly doubt the intention was to “turn this website into a political soapbox”, more likely it was something that was already created and also applied here (the subject being IE6, not the political joke that took up 2 panels out of 32). The joke probably was relevant when the comic was first made. Notice it makes the reference to IE6 being 8 years old, and if it came out in 2001…

    Seriously…its not that big of a deal.

  57. 131

    Nice comic.
    Believe it or not, IE6’s life expectancy is totally up to us. The more we support it the longer it lives. The less we support it the more casual surfers and corporate types realize that it doesn’t work fine at all. In the past we provided them a convenient illusion that it did.
    There is a section in my agreement form stating that the site I build doesn’t have to be backwords compatible with browsers more than 8 years old. I think it’s fair enough.
    Graceful degradation is fine, but the hassle with conditional comments / extra style sheets for lame browsers is annoying and time consuming.
    Sure, there are some projects that you cannot ignore IE6 because of its market share, but it is really up to the average age of your target audience imho. Anyways, whenever a client insists on IE6 compatibility I’m charging extra for it.

    • 132

      PGabor i wholeheartedly agree with this. I could not have said it better, we are employing the same tactics as you mention to do our little part in making the beast disappear. (not supporting ie6 anymore unless the customer wants it and then we charge additional fee)

      Some people say we are lazy or even incompetent developers and that we always should make any site look perfect in IE6 but i do not agree, this monster has been around too long and it is time for it to lay down it’s old and weary head and die (i won’t attend it’s funeral by the way)

  58. 133

    Haha…good one…

    if(browser==IE){explode_processor(); }

    else{keep browsing;}

  59. 134

    I love to have ie6.

    But I think having workarounds and designing for ie6 is easier then convincing non-technical executives of large corporations.

    IE6 has direct relation with Windows XP. We will have to support ie6 untill the OSs are upgraded and Microsoft stops to support Win XP.

  60. 135

    I liked the respect given in the comic for IE6’s heyday but those days are past. This browser should have been drawn needing a walker and wearing depends. It is clearly in its waning days living in a nursing home. Microsoft decision to sit on its laurels and not pay attention to W3 until it was too late cost them customer trust. IE7 was a band aide and I can see why with such as history that people did not flock to IE8 when it came out last year.

    Microsoft has 62% of the market shared between its 3 main versions. IE6 as of Jan 2010 according to NetShare Market still has 20% of the market. It is dropping every month. I made over my portfolio web site for the fifth time since 1994 in October when IE6’s market share was 24%. I decided that since according to my web stats only 4% of my audience is on IE6 it was not worth it to me to spend the extra hours, no days, of tweaking the code to work the way I wanted. Those on IE6 are greeted with “Sorry but your browser is not supported. Please upgrade.” Some of my clients have also dropped support and others are using 17% market share as their threshold of when they will no longer support. It cost money to code only for this one browser and in this market clients are hesitant to spend the resources. Today I have to work on fixing a padding issue that is only appearing in IE6 instead of doing something else.

    Personally, I am becoming suspicious that for those who are forced to use IE6 at work it is an attempt of the work place to keep people from browsing the web for personal purposes:)

    • 136

      17%? You are not being serious, are you? I seriously wonder what kind of business can afford to tell one out of six customers entering its store to piss off. And the argument is cost? How much does it cost to permanently lose a customer who, by visiting your site, actually already indicated interest?

      • 137

        Are you losing your mind

        February 27, 2010 10:24 am

        Seriously, i don’t want IE6 customers… I want them to stay the hell away. If an individual or company is still using IE6, they are either too stupid, or there’s no way they have the budget to pay me what it would take to do anything for them. If someone came to me asking for an IE6 compliant browser, my quote would be easily 10x my normal price for the same project because I don’t WANT those clients, it’s a waste of my precious hair that would be removed during the process.

        Using your “1 in 6” analogy, if 1 in 6 customers were to cheap to actually buy anything, ever, i wouldn’t want them in my store, and I wouldn’t want their referral either. If 1 in 6 customers were shoplifters, they could take a hike too. You are using pointless, and unrelated rhetoric to make an invalid point.

        I want to run a Lexus dealer, not a McDonalds. You are honestly as dense as they come Ed, wake up and smell the coffee, and stop making my life so frigging miserable by saying IE “isn’t that bad”

  61. 138

    I agree with Goldendog 100%.
    As long we support the dinossaur, it will always have an audience. Having an audience we will think about loosing our time by trying to fix it`s goddamn stupidities. Doing that, we allow its audience to remain. It`s a cycle of crap. Not to mention what that means in the matter of quality, criativity and everything related to our work.

    This is an issue of most importance.
    I seem to never find people discussing it seriously. We, webdesigners, should be responsable for the maintenance (or not) of this dinossaur (IE6). It means a great deal for the future of our work and also the web in general. Yet, nobody seems to discuss it seriosly. Ed said about “nothing we can do”. I couldn`t desagree more. It`s this kind of perspective that mantained this sort of “status quo”. And even if it was true, that`s not an excuse for not talking about it. Let`s not be, as we say in portuguese, “over the wall”. We have to choose a side to jump.

    I want to know your opinions about the issue itself. Not the way Brad exposed.
    The exposure of the theme was great, by the way, in many ways. Sorry about my english. Not my mother language.

    • 139


      don’t worry. It’s not mine either, you are coming across perfectly fine. To reiterate my argument: I believe everyone who is willing and able to upgrade to a better browser has already done so. This includes big companies’ IT departments. We are stuck with a market share of overall about 10% who are stuck with IE6. And: I believe it’s almost entirely the result of choice, whether it’s their own or their superiors’, not of a lack of education.

      I can see three scenarios here:
      a) People cannot choose a better browser than IE6. Educating those is pointless because it’s not within their power to change. That’s the “corporate environment” scenario I attribute most of the market share to. This market share will go away as soon as their superiors, who are usually already educated about this issue, is able and willing to drop IE6.
      b) People deliberately chose to use IE6. Those people have a mighty high pain threshold. Educating them is pointless because they already have the arguments and choose to ignore them. If you’re savvy enough to choose which browser to use, you simply must have come across any number of arguments against IE6. I fear that this share of people will stick around, but I also think that it is not a very large amount of people.
      c) People are technologically illiterate. Educating them may make _some_ sense, but chances are they are easily overwhelmed by tech talk. And out of fear to change something to the worse, they choose to not make any change at all. Those people will, in time, get or buy another computer, have their system set up new, and with that change to another browser.

      I’ve seen this before, with Netscape 3, Netscape 4, and IE5(.5), but back then the social part of the web wasn’t nearly as pronounced as it is today, developers were suffering in silence, nowadays they cry out in public. I don’t want to sound like your grandpa, but this will also pass. In a few years’ time, we’ll all laugh about it. And get equally annoyed with IE7, Netscape 3, or whatever browser will be the weakest then.

      • 140

        Many IE 6 users are found in the working places of mostly large companies. Reasons why IT departments of those companies do not say goodbye to IE6 are that applications that are used in these companies are often build around IE6 and the IT people are scared that there will be problems or that applications will fail if IE6 is traded for a better browser. Just enrolling a companywide browser upgrade should not be too costly but many companies ar still using old operating systtems like Windows ME (my company) Windows 2000 or XP

        The best thing to do (i have advised it on the latest meeting in my company) is to keep IE6 for the company applications that cannot use other browsers and to install Firefox on every computer for normal browsing.

      • 141


        February 12, 2010 5:49 am

        Culture change, society change and people’s behavior change, my son, who is 3 years old, sits at my desk, power on my pc (running linux), waits, takes the mouse with his little hand and plays supertux… my dad (who died last year at 56), have a facebook account, used firefox, and he was a retired cop, not a techie or something… If the world functions the way you think It does, then basically all of us we’ll be lazy bastards that wouldn’t give a fuck about anything at all… just because the world, like it is, works, there wouldn’t be advances or anything… I work at a corporation and maybe we don’t use the browsers we like, but at least is not IE6 anymore (IE7 at least)… so if you think that doesn’t make sense to even try you should take a real look around you and wake up…

      • 142


        February 12, 2010 8:54 am

        I kind of disagree with how its not a lack of education. Whether it’s someone who isn’t very tech savvy, or a corporate environment where the individuals don’t have admin rights, somewhere along the line someone ignored prompts to upgrade based on the fact that they don’t see a need for it. Non-tech savvy users think they’re seeing web pages just fine, so why upgrade to something different? Corporate IT departments don’t see a reason to spend the time to upgrade the browsers of everyone in the company, because they feel most sites work fine in IE6. If we keep spending extra time and money to fix problems in IE6, people using IE6 will never see a need to change. If it’s a problem with a company having applications that use IE6 and don’t work in newer browsers, then that company obviously doesn’t realize that they should keep up with technology, and doesn’t feel the need to upgrade.

        Yes, it will pass in time, and as long as Microsoft keeps releasing browsers, we’ll have more to complain about. I’m even starting to find IE8 specific issues with my company’s website. Strange when something works just fine in IE6, IE7, Firefox, Chrome, Safari, but not IE8…

  62. 143

    A agree with Goldendog 100%.
    As long we support the dinossaur, it will always have an audience. Having an audience we will think about loosing our time by trying to fix it`s goddamn stupidities. Doing that, we allow its audience to remain. It`s a cycle of crap. Not to mention what that means in the matter of quality, criativity and everything related to our work.

  63. 144

    I’d like to see the cell where ie6 is down and out, beer drinking as a wallpaper.

  64. 145

    good to see that only 1.8% of visitors to my site are using IE6

  65. 146

    Ed, I can`t say you don`t have a point. But in the end it seems to be a matter of choice. This choice most take place on the ground of valueing what`s most important for you and for your work, not only on what it`s possible to change immediately. What I mean is that perhaps it is worth to loose one of six customers, like you said, if that means improving your work in terms of, well, almost everything. That might mean, in the end, loosing one of nine customers in the future. And then one in twenty.

    My experience is that a lot of people working on web support IE6 because they`re to frighted to risk that one in six.

    About you looking like a grandpa, i do hope you`re one of those who`s always right in the end!

  66. 147

    It would be great if we got it in animation.

  67. 148

    The author manages to convey the message. He wants us to make the decision ourselves. But in my opinion it’s very clear & out there.

    It’s time we kiss IE6.0 goodbye.

  68. 149

    Cool story. Will there be an part 2? What about IE 8?

  69. 150

    Some true insights on I.E which most of us didnt know.. specially the 4-5 year gap. Loved the comic strip by brad as always! :)


  70. 151

    this kind of comics are pretty amazing..jokes and humor in the post.Maybe you should stick with this kind of’s really cool and fun to read it..

    thanks a lot, definitely I will abandon IE, I’m using FF and Chrome right now and still don’t understand why people love IE in my country other than more advance browsers.

    Maybe the older user still love to use IE for their web browser, but there are also few of them still did not know what the browser means..

    • 152

      Agustin Amenabar

      February 12, 2010 8:02 pm

      In my country there’s no official word for browser, people say “Explorer”.

  71. 153

    Great comic as usual, It has all that I despise IE and bush lol. F*** both.

  72. 154

    A truly awesome homage to Scott McCloud if ever I saw one :) Gj.

  73. 155

    Great and interesting comic strip!
    Thanks for creating this Brad.

  74. 156

    :) I like that!
    I must say, as a designer and developer, I totally abandoned ie6 support some months ago. I also do not provide alternative content or gracefully degradable pages at all: it would cost too much for my clients. I simply code aligned with the ie7/8 features and that’s all.
    Sadly and obviously, as a Mac user, I hate to have to do it..

  75. 157

    Fantastic comic^^, like how it turns out and the way it is told. I myself hate IE6, but I love it because it’s a challenge to make something work on an old Browser.

    Still in the end…. shoo IE6.

  76. 158

    great stuff, but i think all this campaign “kill IE 6” is wrong…

  77. 159

    we at saismo decided to NOT support IE6 for future releases – exceptions will be made for clients who insist on supporting IE6, but they have to pay the extra work for fixing the problems with this dinosaur…

  78. 160

    the solution is simple… have ie6 support as an additional extra, then the client can decide if they want to support it or not.

    Yes, ie6 gives our developers headaches, but they have never not been able to fix a very complex website to work in ie6, it just takes a bit of time and a lot of skill. Every good developer should be developing to an audience, if the audience needs ie6 support then give it to them… nobody ever said it was easy, lol.

    nice comic, informative, but leave out the jokes…

  79. 161

    Great strip! Yes as designers we’d love to see IE6 walk off into the sunset, but as the cartoon so nicely points out many of the IE6 users either can’t upgrade due to work systems (I know plenty of people who suffer at the hands of this) or are less tech savvy and see no reason to change.

    So when you have to design for a large etailing company it’s always important for me to reach as many potential customers as possible. Hopefully the audience reach will outway the many headaches that IE6 still brings.

    Great job Brad!

  80. 162

    I’m not a real web designer but sometimes I like to design something and one thing what I’ve learn is IE6 holds back web evolution. We cant use CSS3 and HTML5. I know that these technologies are new and still experimental but many browsers already supports custom fonts, text shadow, video tag, rounded corners and so on. These features are helping to make easier to design and making website loading faster (smaller amount images are needed, most of work is done by browser). I don’t support IE6 anymore although I try to make small changes so it can be viewed in that browser. IE6 must die. Stop supporting it, users will upgrade if no one supports it.

    Sorry about my crappy english :)

    • 163

      Agustin Amenabar

      February 12, 2010 8:06 pm

      IE6 death will not unleash CSS3 and HTML5 (which are still drafts), IE7, 8, FF2 and FF3.0 and so many others don’t support css3 and html5. not gona happen any time soon.

  81. 164

    What is this comic’s license?
    Can I public this? Can I translate this?

    I think, if everyone helps, it can happen. :)

    • 165

      I second that. Would like to translate to brazilian portuguese and release back to public. Some CC license would be great.

  82. 166

    More people are using IE6 then MAC (5%).
    Why not write a strip about getting people to leave MAC for other OS’s?
    It would save me a lot of time not having to test on a MAC.

    BTW: I don’t like IE6 but I understand why it’s still used.

    • 167

      5% Using OSX must be a miscalculation seeing as my statistics show 60% of my visitors being OSX. Also, this leave mac for windows argument is getting old. IE6 is the problem here, thus i’ve already ended support for it. When users visit my site with IE6 they are ALLOWED to see my website, but they’ll get a very annoying javascript overlay every time they load a page.

      I rather annoy them to get Firefox then spend another 5 hours per project to fix all the bugs only related to IE6.

      • 168


        February 12, 2010 5:54 am

        Actually is not a miscalculation… …is just that you don’t have a wide audience…

        • 169

          I suggest looking at the references of that wikipedia page. The info on there is more than 1 year old.

          According to more recent references. In the past 3Q’s the market share of Safari went up by 3%. Whereas the market share of IE6 went down by 15%. Nice try though.

          And EVEN if you were correct about the safari usage. Have you bothered to check how much of the percentage of firefox are mac users?

    • 170

      You can upgrade from IE6 for free, but you can’t change OS’ for free (well, unless you use Linux, but even fewer people use that than OSX). You can’t compare the two anyways, they’re on totally different levels.

  83. 171

    I look at it like this:

    All the stats I have for sites show that IE6 still accounts for 10% of IE users. Some more, some less but the average for a generic shopping site is 10% of IE users. With IE still dominant that is a large chunk of visitors so my view is this:

    If a site has 1,000 sales a year it would roughly lose 65 sales a year if I hadn’t catered for IE6. If I have to spend an extra half a day to help IE6 (even if it’s just to degrade gracefully) the client is still quids in. To this day I simply cannot justify (in my own head) not supporting IE6 because when you look at the bigger picture (like yearly sales) you can quickly see that extra bit of work could have got the client dozens more sales over the year.

    I am “limiting” my IE6 support for info sites and I’m slightly increasing my use of CSS3 because it can be a very useful tool on some sites. I still can’t personally justify dropping IE6 until the market share is below 1%. At that point that extra half a day simply wouldn’t be worth it.

    It’s the same as browser resolutions – As soon as 640×480 went below 1% I dropped support. When 1024 hits the same stat I’ll drop it.

    10% of IE users is still too big a number for me…

    • 172

      Agustin Amenabar

      February 12, 2010 8:12 pm

      I totally agree with you, but on some aspects I’m not as benevolent as to wait for 1%

      as for screen res. goes, I discovered, that most people that still have 800×600 res (mostly because they are short sighted), they often use the browser’s zoom to reduce de size to about 75% to fit in the window. From that moment on, I forgot about 800x600px, even though my stats show more than 10% using that res.

  84. 173

    praveen vijayan

    February 12, 2010 2:09 am

    Degrade gracefully!! Give an honor to this browser. In its golden days served with best it can provide. Its time to hear call from heaven IE6… Goodbye IE6.. we love you.. RIP

  85. 174

    Great way to tell this story!: ) Love your work.
    I agree with Simon, it’s still too big a number and needs consideration. Bring on the day 1%

  86. 175

    Great Post Brad :) ;)

    i have stop using a separate css for ie 6 with wasting loads of time, so people checking the sites in the IE 6 will see the horrible side of the IE 6 and then they will find a better browser or atleast upgrade to the newer version of IE.

    Hates IE 6 (No Tabs, slow., etc)
    Loves Firefox (Tabs, Fast, lots of addons., etc )

  87. 176

    David Fitzgibbon

    February 12, 2010 2:30 am

    Good clean fun and makes a good point! I like it!

  88. 177

    it’s a good comic but that was not a joke…

    I think Microsoft needs to be get better to Internet Explorer in comparison of other Browsers..

    Truly now i am a big fan of Mozilla Firefox.

  89. 178

    Nice one (:

  90. 179

    Really cool comic strip. Nicely done Brad.

  91. 180

    Ahhahah, nice! I’ve enjoyed this comic :)
    We totally stopped supporting IE6 last year.

  92. 181

    Ali Hasan Mohani

    February 12, 2010 3:49 am


  93. 182

    Podveg Razvedcheka

    February 12, 2010 3:50 am

    I have IE6 on my computer still to test pages. And Firefox Mozzilla.

  94. 183

    You should keep your dump@ss political comments to yourself!

    • 184

      Nice comment. What you’re saying is that you think freedom of speech should be revoked? If you don’t like his political comments then write your own cartoon.

  95. 185

    Great story :).

  96. 186

    IE6 took my youth, and my hair…

    Good riddance.

  97. 187

    I wish IE6 to die and RIP … but they still support it until 2012???

  98. 188

    Fabiano Dresch

    February 12, 2010 4:46 am

    Great article.
    We spend many hours to adjust the code for IE6. It’s very, very bad for business.

  99. 189


    February 12, 2010 4:53 am

    Wonderfull Man… I am going to celebrate this day as IE6 death day, Shell We…

    Thanks & Regards,

  100. 190

    Great interpretation!

  101. 191

    Kevin Chapelier

    February 12, 2010 6:12 am

    There are so many blogs publishing visceral articles about “it”, this insightful and rational comic is pretty refreshing. I also like how it doesn’t bring down the holy hammer of Judgment on the poor IE6 users. (writing that using Opera 10.10)

  102. 192

    Did I miss something? “Release in 2001 IE6…”, then in the next pane “Throughout the 90’s Netscape and IE6 fought for market share.” Otherwise great, but I can’t seem to get past that; have a feeling I’m just missing something though.

  103. 194

    It’s a shame when politics leak into such a great blog. I may have been in hibernation, but I was under the impression that jokes about our President were so played out that anyone with any class or couth would keep their opinions to themselves at this point unless they were engaged in a relevant conversation and asked for their take on such a topic. I think sticking to design would be a better choice in the future. Politics are messy and nobody wants to see that crap when they come to a site that’s a fun to read as this. If I wanted to read Bush-bashing I’d go to Sure, it’s cartoon, but let’s grow up a little guys. Thanks for letting me put in my 2 cents ;) Have a good one!

  104. 195

    Dharmesh Nakum

    February 12, 2010 6:40 am

    Good work on IE6’s comic strip, Brad, U r good illustration artist, Thanks for this affort

  105. 196

    I dont know what the big deal about IE6 is. I use it all the time and everything always looks fine to me.

    • 197

      Mostly because most of us develop a 2nd css file for all the websites especially for IE6. However, have fun living in the past. CSS3 will not be available for you.

    • 198

      Just don’t let Raf fool you …

      But he has a good point: Most of the people using IE6 will think “Hey, everything looks fine. Why should I upgrade to another browser?” Well, many of these people won`t even know what IE6 or a browser is … So everything has two sides. One one side it`s the achievement of us webdesigners, that so many sites are still usable in older browsers – which is a good thing. But on the other side, like I said before, why should people upgrade when everything looks fine? And that’s a very bad thing. It’s a damn vicious circle!

  106. 199

    I dont know but I just find IE to be easy to design for. I do it in tables an avoid styles sheet because it can cause ie 6 to look pretty bad… so im fine with ie6 is what i mean.

    • 200

      What are you planning to do when the next version of HTML comes out? Tables will be entirely removed.

  107. 201

    ie6 really has to die.

    Come on, lets not preserve its already expired life any longer.

  108. 202

    Nice way to explain to non-techy people about IE6, many thanks

  109. 203

    What TEH? I like the old fafebook better. How do I login to my farmville? !!!!!111

  110. 204

    Daniel Buchner

    February 12, 2010 7:57 am

    Yeah, gee golly, it sure is nice to have Bush out of office huh! Obama has done us a solid by replacing that chart with a new, multi-purpose one with exactly the opposite curve and a new name: The Inflation–National-Debt–Broken-Promises Chart!

    Yesss! I love stagflation and interest on a national debt that is soon going to exceed our entire yearly GDP! You Demz sure iz smartz!

  111. 205

    Nice comic and very well explained the history of facts :)

  112. 206

    16% of my company’s website visitors so far this year use IE6 so I’ve got no choice other than to support it. I don’t like it, it makes things trickier, but if you design with it in mind from the very beginning it’s not hard to deal with. You’ve just got to know how to code and let the site degrade nicely for lesser browsers if you choose to add any kind of advanced design or functionality.

    I read a comment from Adam S above who said that if you don’t agree that it’s a web designers’ nightmare then you’re not a very good designer. I take exception to that as I disagree and would like to think that I’m at least a little bit better than ‘not a very good designer’. As I said, you have to design with it in mind. If you go all out adding loads of CSS2 and CSS3 to everything then you’re not considering your users – that’s what makes you ‘not a very good’ designer. Usability and content are more important than design every time, I’m afraid to say.

    People use IE6. People will continue to use IE6. I don’t and I don’t know why people with a choice do, but they do and we have to work with it. As many other people have said (though mainly about the political aspect of the comic) “get over it”, and consider your users, not yourselves.

  113. 207

    Thanks Brad for a very classy way to express the growing dissonance between designers and IE6. Another well-done comic. Bravo!

  114. 208

    Bush joke. Super topical.

  115. 209

    @Ed… i like your way to spend time on internet, answering every comment that you like or not… i mean… it’s a comic… i can’t see the anti-ie argument and other crap you say. Please don’t answer. I really dont’ care.

  116. 210

    I’m currently using the ie6update javascript on some of my websites. I hope this will help getting rid of this oldie !

  117. 211

    You lost me and all my respect when you took your little political turn about.

    Score One for “Smashing Magazine” Brand Damage.

    Editors — You should be very careful with your management of the Smashing brand. Until today we had a great perception of Smashing in our studio.

    Now the brand just feels ‘dirty.’

    Clicking on the Smashing Daily Bookmark will never be the same experience.

  118. 212

    I’m all for developing across all browsers, but IE6 is like dragging a dead horse around. It’s time not only for developers, but Microsoft, to actively engage users to upgrade to the current version. One of my favorite dev-side approaches at this is from If you’re in IE6, they have a great javascript pop-up that explains why IE6 is bad and how to upgrade.

  119. 213

    see ya ie6!!! that browser has casued me many painful discussions with clients

  120. 214

    First off, very entertaining!

    Secondly, why can’t all history books be written like this? It’d make history much more fun, and would probably benefit me a lot. Haha

    I personally thought the Bush joke added some individuality to the post and found it humorous just because it was a clever way to add some “bigger picture” to the timeline of when all this IE6 IE7 stuff was happening.

    • 215

      Not to mention that Bush jokes are old and IE6 is old.
      And we should get rid of them both.

  121. 216

    Screw Internet Explorer in general. Fin.

  122. 217

    so is the stubble on the little “e” supposed to be his beard or his pubes?

  123. 218

    Brad, nice way to educate people. Love it.

  124. 219

    Why does the guy telling the story have a tag-nut at the bottom of his head?

  125. 220

    Burn IE6 burn!

  126. 221

    IE6 and Bush jokes. Yawn. Don’t we have anything better to do? If anyone who’s reading SM is using IE6, it’s because they can’t upgrade, not because they want to use IE6 or don’t know any better.

  127. 222

    One “comic” strip drawing related question,
    is IE’s hair a beard or his pubic hair? :p

  128. 223

    IE6 is already dead. We all must forget about it and let it go… to hell!!! Otherwise, it will stay here in earth… like a poltergeist …. forever…..

  129. 224

    wow its andy clarke lol ..this comic amazing…
    dont know what other saying but this is good man…..
    im not designing for IE6 , I force them to upgrade their browsers

  130. 225

    Gr8 comic mate. This question has been a major issue with all web designers, from should you have hacks to disclaimers on best viewed on claims.

    Unfortunately, it doesn’t give the non-techie reasons to upgrade to firefox or opera. @Tai, i wouldn’t send this to my clients because you’ll probably have to spend more time explaining the comic than why IE6 sucks!

    Maybe we can look forward to MS providing Firefox and Chrome options with the newer releases of Windows.

  131. 226

    Tomorrow we’re launching a new business, selling jewelry online. We’ve had to drastically change our initial design based on the results of our tests on IE6.

    Why bother? Because we’re in Japan, where IE utterly dominates the market, and where IE6 still “enjoys” a more than 50% market share. The first two users in your diagrams are the reason for the apparent popularity of IE6: Japanese corporations can’t be bothered to upgrade, and many Japanese home users don’t care about the software they use.

    You can’t design away from IE6 in Japan, end of story.

  132. 227

    Henri Guilloteau

    February 13, 2010 12:44 am

    Wow, excellent work mate, thanks very much.

    @Smashing Mag: you are not saying “Die IE6, die”? Well, I’ll say it on your behalf looool

  133. 228

    It’s funny. I see so many people here bashing ie6. The comic does a good job but i mean really, Without ie would any of you designers even have a job today. Ie pretty much opened up the internet. Mostly all your users were once on some version of ie and windows.

    Interestingly, on a recent site i designed, there were the standard workarounds for ie7, 6 and 5 and one for opera 9 and firefox 2

    My point is all browsers suck in some way. All of them. Whining and complaining about 1 particular browser… you’re just lazy, over paid. How can you call yourself a designer/developer.

    You’re getting paid to DO A JOB.

    The nerve of some of you guys. If I was a one of your clients i would sue.

  134. 229

    Great post, but your jab at Pres. Bush is as comical as this little IE6 tale of yours. Checked Obamski’s approval lately? Greatest first year drop in the history of the US, chachi. Tact is knowing when to keep your personal politics to yourself…

  135. 230

    I thought this was a really relaxed way of explaining the whole fiasco that was IE6. Bring on more articles like this. It’s informative, funny in the right parts and lots of room for further topics.

  136. 231

    I don’t develop for IE 6 anymore. In tech dog years, it was my great grand parents browser. I do (however) look at my clients analytics to see how prevalent IE6 users are on their sites. So far, it has been around 12% or less. IE8 has quickly become the top choice lately in the IE category. A line has to be drawn in the sand. I applaud 37 signals for targeting the majority of their users, versus watering their experience down for the minority.

    • 232


      you are definitely right on how you go about it. in the end, regardless of argument, it all comes down to your audience. if your demographic doesn’t use IE, then dont worry about designing for it. checking the analytics is a great case by case strategy!

  137. 233

    In my company we’ve pretty much stopped supporting IE6 as standard now. Only for special requests (usually public sector clients in the UK) and we’re starting to charge for it. This has obviously ruffled a few feathers, but it has also made clients consider the implications of operating such old technology. We’ve also had some successes in helping smaller clients upgrade or start using Firefox or Chrome.

  138. 234

    Nice work. Really I enjoyed reading. :)

  139. 235

    David Ingledow

    February 13, 2010 8:27 am

    I really enjoyed reading that! I’ve currently got a javascript feature on my site that tells the user that they have to upgrade if they are using IE6 – I really don’t know why a lot of companies don’t upgrade – it’s very annoying!!!!!!!

  140. 236

    We took the cue from 37Signals (at my ‘corporate’ workplace where I manage all the Web sites) and I laid out the cost-benefit/ROI analysis for what would be required to support IE6 for another year or two vs. abandoning support for it specifically, focusing on the benefits of forward-compatible design and implementation. If we behaved like an eight-year old company, we would be viewed as one. I got no push-back.

    Companies are wasting staff time and precious resources supporting technology that is more than EIGHT YEARS OLD. In Internet time, that’s outrageous. Although many of our Web visitors (large government organizations, educational institutions) still use IE6 (about 25%), I made a strong case for letting them just deal with it. We’re moving FORWARD, with or without them. We’re lucky, however, in that we don’t rely on these particular users for revenue, and the real reason they haven’t upgraded is that they’re organizationally lazy. Not a good enough justification for us to spend extra money now (and later) to give them a perfect Web site experience when the majority of our users–and revenue base–have a faster adaptation rate to new technology. We must be out in FRONT of change rather than lagging behind.

  141. 237

    I add about $30% to the project if a client wants a web page optimized for IE6. Most now don’t. In fact in the last year the Silicon Valley start-ups that I worked for said don’t bother coding for IE6 – so at least for those kinds of clients things are moving in the right direction.

  142. 238

    good-bye IE6, we will miss you…

  143. 239

    This comic was unduly kind to IE6. It should have had had a panel with IE6 eating babies, or kicking a puppy. IE6 provides so much comedic material and I feel it was under utilized.

  144. 240

    From the times of Mosaic to the actual “Browser Wars”… the story of IE6 is just one of many. I liked it, back then … in the ancient times of table-layouts ;) It was pretty fast, though.
    Still, it’s pain in the a** for designers. I need more time for making a site looking good in IE6 and my customers have to pay for my time. And if these are companies, as they usually are, they have to get their money from their customers. Maybe a clever economy-student figures out one day, how much national economic damage IE6 causes today.

    By the way, I like the comic. Thank you very much, Brad!

  145. 241

    IE6 is a default browser of Windows-XP operating system. Till many users are using windows-xp OS. So IE6 will dead while dead win-xp os as my point of view

  146. 242

    We will say the same things about IE7 and IE8 in two years. Microsoft has to be release an updateable browser like FF. IE6 is biggest fail of the software history!

  147. 243


    Not funny at all, what’s the point of making a comic of it is it has no emotional relief?

  148. 244

    I work in a b2b industry serving over 100 corporate e-commerce sites. There is a huge percentage of clients that still use IE6. While we will make sure that IE6 users can still use the site functionally, we no longer guarantee a consistent layout/design for them. It just doesn’t make sense to support an outdated and vulnerable browser. I’ve convinces a few companies to make the switch. If you’re in the industry and in a position to convince someone about updating their browsers, do it.

  149. 245

    Excellent comic ;)

    I do not optimize sites for IE6 anymore…
    Instead I have script that warn users to upgrade their browser, or to use some other browser.

    So… die ie6, die ;)

  150. 246

    I still need IE because for some reason the wma files only play right with IE and not in Firefox even with plugins.

    but..i love Opera.

  151. 247

    Though, web wouldn’t somewhat grew without IE6 evolution.
    Having said that, I still have to agree that it has been too long since released of IE6 and I fully support the retirement of IE6.
    IE8 is great but still not as fast as Firefox 3.
    Safari is good but not as flexible as Firefox.
    Geko has really changed the web experience (can I say forever?).

    Da*n! “Who moved my cheese?”

  152. 248

    ie = internet explosion

  153. 249

    nice! your site’s fab too!

  154. 250

    Wouter Kirstein

    February 14, 2010 11:37 pm

    What designers must do in rehab…

  155. 251

    ie6 = internet evolution (NOT)
    ie6 = please enable your upgrade options.

    I think it’s the right time to wave off ie6 it served its time well

  156. 252

    Nice summary, thnx :)

  157. 253

    Kasun Rajapaksha

    February 15, 2010 12:56 am

    Excellent comic. My opinion is we should not cater IE 6. Then the IE 6 users will upgrade their browsers. Until we do cater IE 6, its lazy users want upgrade their browsers.

  158. 254

    I think the question, if you still support IE6, should depend on your audience. That means, first you should look at your stats, how many users still use this browser. If the percentage is only a low one, like under 2 or 3 %, it should be ok to drop support for it. But I think many websites out there still have a much higher share at IE6-users. And no matter how big your website is, you can’t afford to loose customers by not supporting the tool they use to view your site. If the differences are only minor there should be no problem, but if you use advanced CSS3-selectors and stuff like this that practically render the website unusable in older browser there is no way around and it’s your job as a web designer to take care that everybody can view the site you designed. IE6-users who don`t have the ability to upgrade will thank you!

    By the way, nice comic strip!

  159. 255

    I don’t remember there being a time when we didn’t hate IE6. It was better than IE5, which could download, install, configure and run a virus without a single message, but it was still a miserable ad ware boat, and without it, there wouldn’t be so much malware to begin with. We didn’t have a choice, because flash and java were in their infancy, and Opera and Netscape, while vastly superior, couldn’t be depended on to display pages correctly unless the page was designed for them. Millions of web pages began with a phrase telling you what browser and version to view it with. Today, we have Firefox and Chrome, both free and independent, both equally capable without the need for dual support from the web designer. Truly a delightful change. I don’t even use the IE adapter in Firefox any more, it simply isn’t needed – usually. Now if only my work computers could upgrade past IE6..

  160. 256

    I really enjoyed the strip… but Safari wasn’t out for Windows until 2008.

  161. 257

    IMO, if developers simply just stop catering to the IE6 users, they will have no choice but to upgrade. I don’t even check compatibility with IE6 when I am working. The most work I do is use the reset from the for compatibility. If visitors aren’t staying up to date.. well tough. If they aren’t keeping up with IE I could only imagine what other security holes they have in there system.

  162. 258

    Great Comic.. I’ve always loved reading Brad Colbow comics.

    Btw, is there something wrong with the Gravatars? I don’t see them working well, maybe very slow loading!

  163. 259

    How did ie6 battle netscape back in the 90s?? (panel 7) Also, stagnant is not a verb. You can’t let a browser stagnant, but you can let it stagnate. (panel 8)

  164. 260

    We always like to be on the side thats winning, we call that beeing independent and cool

  165. 261

    Amazing article….. IE6 very very painful for IT industries and specially for the designers.

  166. 262

    IE6 should see the its demise…
    The start should be made from cybercafes….All cyber cafe’s should install Mozilla firefox 3 and above and place its shortcut on the desktop centered on screen…..

    Even organizations following open source tech should promote mozilla…

    Developers and designers already know the benefits of Gecko…whats to be done is increase awareness that People Have a Choice and thats our responsiblilty….place a line below ur email signature….(i use mozilla ) atleast thats what we all can do the next time we forward our mails.

  167. 263

    I want that part of my life back!
    Also i do use IE6 its all good for porno websites!

  168. 264

    Every on that uses IE6 Company’s and alike
    Maybe they have it for Active X Programs that use IE6 and such fine then they need it but just

    install chrome frame

    That way web sites can stop developing for it put 1 line of code and force it to use Chrome Frame so the web can evolve properly and then the applications or such that use it can still show new and old site without a problem

    Google has something to do with most web systems whether its just analytical or Google Apps, so why not use Chrome Frame in all IE and make the web a better place

  169. 265

    This is is hilarious :D
    But in all honesty, people need to fuckin’ move on. It’s been almost 10 years. It’s time we all stopped supporting IE6 and let the stragglers suffer.

  170. 266
  171. 267

    this is som ov my cooding that i hav dun. it tok mee abot 3 months to do

    #mainleft {

    #maincenter {
    #mainright {

    line of text

    line of text

    line of text

    line of text

    line of text

    line of text

    line of text

    line of text

    line of text

    line of text

    line of text

    line of text

    line of text

    line of text

    line of text

    line of text

    line of text

    line of text

  172. 268

    Nicely done, but may i ask why you have so many “Lines of text”

  173. 270

    Really nice comic, love it.

  174. 271

    i am superman

  175. 272

    i’d like just to point out that by the ’90 STANDARD ALREADY EXISTED, it was just ie that simply decided not to supported them
    aaan you perhaps forgot to mention that ie gained 95% of popularity because it was bundled with the OS

    next time please get better documentation

  176. 273

    Nice comic, could have done without the political comment however.

  177. 274

    sandeep parkhande

    February 17, 2010 8:49 pm

    The main problem for the developers is they need to do some extra efforts to support their

    websites for ie6. The simple solution for the problem is –
    “Charge extra for the ie6 support”

    If the client is ready to pay for it then the developers should be more than happy as they

    are earning extra money. And the same time update the client about modern browsers and there

    features. If the client decides not to support ie6 the developers will double happy.

    Everyone should follow this tactics.


  178. 275

    sandeep parkhande

    February 17, 2010 8:50 pm

    The main problem for the developers is they need to do some extra efforts to support their

    websites for ie6. The simple solution for the problem is –
    “Charge extra for the ie6 support”

    If the client is ready to pay for it then the developers should be more than happy as they

    are earning extra money. And the same time update the client about modern browsers and there

    features. If the client decides not to support ie6 the developers will double happy.

    Everyone should follow this tactics.

  179. 276

    Oh yeah.. one of the reasons that i couldn’t upgrade is my computer is really slow! once I have tried to upgrade it I noticed that I cannot work on my PC as usual ,so I installed IE6 again!

  180. 277


    Everyone come on WoW Frostmourne Gamename: Zxane
    Level 80 Paladin

  181. 278

    Hey guies how are you I hav bean working on some coding latly and i thort you could reed it and giv me some ad vicee abot it. it tok me lick 2hrs to make

    my first web page

    THis is mi phirst web page i hop u lick it

  182. 279

    This is a bit of mi coding. I hav bean coding for abot 1yr now and my dad has bean helping mi. this bit of coding tok me lick 2hrs to doo. I hop u all lick it and enjoi it. if u want i wil let you use some. but its really god so dont copy it all. hop you enjoi it and lick show it to al ur frends :)

    this is mi phirst web page

    this is a really col web page mi dad helped me doo.

  183. 280

    Dean "Zxane" Skinner

    February 23, 2010 5:39 pm

    Jackk mann you coming to dalaran tavern to hang with my brosss for my 21st bdayy

    • 281

      na broo i cant. my mum said i cant go to the compoter becus i was caught talking to this hot night elf chikc and my mum dosnt like me to talk to alience pipple

  184. 282

    Dean "Zxane" Skinner

    February 23, 2010 5:42 pm

    why not now only 1 dude is cominggg

    you uber pwnage newbz0r

    • 283

      ohh i c how it is. you think ur so cool with your nax weps and stuff but you cant even down lich king without like wiping and i dont even pop trinkets like ever

  185. 284

    Dean "Zxane" Skinner

    February 23, 2010 5:45 pm

    OMFG you just got me banned for swearing on WOW

    IM SO UBER angry!

  186. 285

    I think IE6 is faster then IE7 even IE8

  187. 286

    Dean "Zxane" Skinner

    February 24, 2010 6:44 pm

    yo forum gurus

  188. 287

    IE6 is a pain in the rear. it gives me a headache when i am designing pages.

  189. 288

    what should we do with our time without optimizing for the ie6? xD

  190. 289

    Nice comic.
    It reminded me of the style of Scott McCloud.

  191. 290

    This IE6 thing is just getting boring guys. for gods sake get over it. I hardly know anyone who still has IE6 on his computer. even if they do, they don’t know any better. also this IE6 bullshit thing was the reason I stopped using Stumbleupon. every idiot nerd who wanted to be funny made a page about it and submitted it to stumbleupon. jesus, get over it already.

  192. 291

    I worked for a company and we were not allowed to upgrade to IE7 or use any other browser other than IE6. One person was actually fired for using IE7 (I’m not kidding). I had circumvented the system and was using firefox but only about a month later I came to find the IT team had blocked all the firefox ports and it no longer would connect. I confronted managers about this many times and the only reason I got was “IE6 is tried and true”. yeah…………….

  193. 292
  194. 293

    Being a web developer and a computer user, I hate IE 6….. Let it die……..

  195. 294


    March 16, 2010 9:42 am

    My work is soooo behind the curve we still run IE6 exclusively.
    Yay for me!

  196. 295


    March 16, 2010 9:44 am

    Ah, I think I’m gonna write about the fun times of IE6 from a consumer point of view.

  197. 296

    Great conclusion – choose and know why you chose.

    I develop for small and medium businesses. Most of “my” sites will be visited by a pretty non-technoid cross-section of surfers in which IE6 has too large a share for me to ignore, if I am to be properly protective of my clients’ interests.

    Soon as IE6’s general market share drops below 5%, I’ll pop a cork, and the rejoicing will be great. ‘Til then, I’ll follow your rule, choosing to support IE6 and knowing why I choose to do so.

  198. 297

    Diamond Barrel

    March 23, 2010 1:19 pm

    Sorry guys but IE is a huge shame is a different guy of the class doesn’t support a lot things and be sure the is the worst browers but how was a gif with windows nobody say anything about it.

    short life for you IExplorer!

  199. 298

    John Pitchers

    April 20, 2010 6:08 am

    Dude! Great job.

  200. 299

    Make IE6 history

    April 26, 2010 3:40 pm

    i love the interpretations! :D

    I have to disagree on the “every project is different”-argument, because IE6 is a dead end no matter how one sees it. Most people who still use IE6 (or companies forcing their employees to use it) are doing so either because they don’t care, because of a uninformed descision, or out of lazyness. We as webdesigners make it easy for people not to care, not to educate themself, and not update their systems so they can support a more recent or another webbrowser. That has to stop, and when it do the web will become a little safer for those who don’t know any better because when the majority of websites are looking “weird” in their crappy browser they will eventually be forced to care and educate themself.

    Make IE6 history.

  201. 300


  202. 301

    Yeah, i agree with this posting. As a lot of things won’t work in IE6 and takes extra time to work on the css separately for IE browsers like IE6, IE7 & IE8. Really hectic… Those who all use IE6 need to upgrade their browser to IE7.

    • 302

      Dai shiva, romba peter udatha….! intha mathiri yellam inga vanthu scene podatha…!! nai unakku css olunga seiya theriyadu ana inga vanthu peria developer mathiri padam katturiya…??!!

  203. 303

    Really i agree with u…ie6 is very painful to us(WeDesigners OR Developers)

  204. 305

    Yeah don’t abandon IE6!

    PS. lets continue to teach old English ans Egyptian hieroglyphics as required courses.

    Is it time to abandon IE6? Nope that time came 2 years ago, not like you can’t make a single “Click me” button upgrade you to IE8 or better yet something that is not IE.

  205. 306

    Thumbed down on stumble for the tacky Bush jab. Show some class.

  206. 307

    God, if i don’t see IE 6 dead within this week, I’m going to kill it myself.

  207. 308

    Very nice post. You described everything in a great way. Really love this post


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