You seem to be under the impression that there is some sort of standard around rich text editors. There isn't. So to ask if IE did not follow the standards is silly. There is no standard.
Because there is no standard, the various browsers have their own way of implementing some sort of rich text editing. To be compatible with all of these different browsers, we (like most sites) use a 3rd party rich-text editor package. We use tinyMCE, but there are many others to choose from.
HTML5 is trying to standardize rich-text editing but it is still a work in progress. The work on HTML5 actually is similar to IE's approach.
Though you may complain against IE not following standards, this is how the web advances. In the early days, Netscape gave us the non-standard <img> tag. IE4 gave us the non-standard defer attribute to scripts that became part of HTML4. IE5 gave us the non-standard XMLHttpRequest object that is the foundation of AJAX and is now being standardized by the W3C. IE6 sp1 introduced the non-standard HttpOnly cookie which is now in draft form with the IETF and already supported by all modern browsers.
Has there been problems with browsers not following standards. Oh yeah, there has been major problems with all the browsers at one time or another. But when it comes to issues like rich-text editing, not following standards is not the issue. It is the lack of standards that is the issue. And as happened in the past, the standards are being crafted around what is already working on the web.
That's interesting but strange that the browser doesn't notify the user of these issues.. Both dns and 502 errors are usually reported.
This is one of the biggest challenges for developing an interactive web page. There is a huge amount of uncertainty when scripting for web pages.
Blaming it on the other guy is not cool at all, it's not professional either.
Yes i know it can happen, stuff breaks but that it breaks this often well it basically doesn't happen.
What you call blame I call an understanding of the reality of web development.
We try to take reasonable measures to mitigate factors that are out of our control. No blame, no excuse. Just reality.
> I can assure you that we are not doing "some fancy nonstandard stuff that only works in IE".
I hear you but it would take a lot more for me to trust what you are saying..
Feel free to look through the code yourself. It is sitting right there on your computer and available to download at any time. We have nothing to hide. Not like there is any way we could hide it anyway.
> We take many steps to reduce script erros on pages and provide the best possible end-user experience when failures do happen.
Obviously your steps are flawed.
As any dev will tell you: Tests != users
PS: I'm not trying to be mean i just don't like beating around the bush.
On the web, it is impossible to test for every scenario. There are simply too many factors that are outside of the control a web-site developer. That is why a web developer must try to create an experience that is acceptable for the vast majority of their users, and have a reasonable and graceful fallback for the minority when things go wrong.
That is also why support forums like this are created. When a user is having trouble, we can work with them to try and isolate what exactly is going on.
If you would like to start over, I would like to work with you to solve your problems. This is a long and twisted thread, and I have lost track of exactly what is going wrong for you. If you could bullet list the problems you are having with text editing on this site, I will try and solve them.