Links automatically opening in new windows

Whenever I link to other pages or sites, I’ve specified that the link should open in a new tab or window. Ever since the advent of tabbed browsing, this is the way I have surfed the Internet and so it made sense to me.

However, my opinion has changed after reading the posts and comments over at Problogger, Useit and David Airey. The choice should be with the user.

This is a policy I completely agree with. The web is democratic and people should browse as they wish. This is one of the reasons why I allow the full text of my posts to appear in RSS feeds. If RSS users want to click through to my site they can, but it is their choice.

I will continue to specify that direct links to files should open in new windows, but from hereon in the majority of links will open in this tab. If you wish to open the link in a new window or tab you can

  • Click the link with the middle mouse button (the scroll wheel)
  • Hold control when you left-click on the link
  • Right click on the link and choose the option to open it in a new tab or window

(I realise that these are PC instructions, but this is what I have and know. Plus, I figure that if you have a Mac you probably know how to navigate already – SIDENOTE: Is it fallacious to assume Mac users are more web savvy?)

This policy should become more apparent in my next, overdue series of links update – which should be up over the next couple of days.

I’d be interested to hear other bloggers thoughts on this – how do you create your links? As I always control-click it had never occurred to me that I might be in the minority. How do you prefer to navigate?

sk

Photo credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/pinkmoose/

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2 Responses

  1. Hey Simon, thanks for the kind mention.

  2. Excellent news! My link-clicking habits form two categories:
    1) I want to read this now. I want it to open in the same window, and I’ll click back to the original page when I’m finished.
    2) I want to read this later. I want it to open in a new window BEHIND the one I am reading now. That is to say, not in front of it blocking my view. BEHIND it. (I achieve this using Opera’s amazing right-click and “open in background window” option which I cannot live without.)

    So websites that set stuff to open in a new window irritate me either way. 🙂

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