More Image Toolbar

Is turning off the image toolbar wrong?

10 replies on “More Image Toolbar”

I think turning off the image toolbar is about a half-step less wrong than using javascript to disable the context menu, but that’s probably only because I use the context menu and always disable the image toolbar (when I use IE). I’d likely hold a different opinion if I used the image toolbar, which is definitely a legimate feature. Whether you use the it or not, though, I don’t think you can honestly believe it’s on the same level as smarttags.

Part of Web designer etiquette should be leaving people’s user agents alone unless absolutely necessary. Don’t change the window size. Don’t color the scrollbar. Don’t disable a feature you dislike when the user can do it himself if he shares your opinion.

Of course, there will be exceptions. You have to follow the spirit of the law, since there really is no letter. You can’t always get it right, but that’s life for you.

Their browser, your site! If you don’t want your website to display images with the image toolbar, then it is okay for you to remove that.
That is why there is a way to remove it, so you as a designer can control content delivery.

A parallel would be disabling the right click feature for images, so as to prevent people from ripping off copyrighted images. The creator or owner of the webpage should be free to decide what to do with his content.

I think disabling the toolbar is above par.

Personally, whenever I see a site with the context menu disabled, I never return to that site, ever. However, I do hate the image toolbar on IE (in the rare occasions when I actually use IE) so I haven’t a problem with your disabling it. I’m guessing many do, however, and I’d vote that you leave it enabled. It is a usability issue, you know. The fact is, many IE users who have grown used to using the toolbar, and who don’t know other methods of saving/sending pictures, or whatever, might be rather distressed. Of course, you might just not want them to be able to save/send your pictures, in which case you’d have to disable the context menu as well, in which case I’d never return to your site, ever. So don’t do that, please!

In short, yes. Why? Messing around with a UI that isn’t yours. This falls under the list of Popups, Context-menu disabling, scrollbar colouring — all of which are accepted to be Bad Things.

Each situation is different. Here’s the thing about IE’s image toolbar: most people don’t even know it can be turned off. The simple fact that they are using IE says something about their level of computer expertise (yeah, here comes the snob mentality, deal with it). I’ve seem lots of people express frustration when the image toolbar obscured an image they were trying to view.

If this option were off by default, there’s no way I’d support anyone turning it off using a meta tag. As it is, the people who use Internet Explorer aren’t going to know how to turn it off, and likely aren’t going to be using it (does ANYONE?)