HTML data for the masses: DOCTYPE usage

Posted on Wednesday, 11 April 2012 by Steve Faulkner

Of a sample of approximately 8900 home pages from a list of of the top 10,000 sites the following HTML doctype usage was found:

Total pages with a doctype declaration: 7708

  • XHTML 1.0: 4930 – 55%
  • HTML5: 1539 -17%
  • HTML 4.01: 960 – 11%
  • XHTML 1.1: 111 – 1.3%
  • HTML 4.0: 96 – 1%
  • XHTML+RDFa: 24 -0.3%
  • HTML 3.2: 9 – 0.1%
  • html SYSTEM: 9 – 0.1%
  • XHTML Mobile: 4
  • html 2.0: 1
  • other: 34 – 0.4%

doctype data text file (zip 5k)

DOCTYPE’s and Accessibility

To my knowledge the use of any particular DOCTYPE has absolutely no effect upon the accessibility of the associated HTML code. What is important is that the doctype you use does not trigger browser quirks mode. The simplest doctype to use to ensure that quirks mode is not triggered is the HTML5 doctype:

<!DOCTYPE html>

For data set and other details refer to: HTML5 Accessibility Chops: data for the masses





About Steve Faulkner

Steve is the Senior Web Accessibility Consultant and Technical Director, TPG Europe. He joined The Paciello Group in 2006 and was previously a Senior Web Accessibility Consultant at vision australia. He is the creator and lead developer of the Web Accessibility Toolbar accessibility testing tool. Steve is a member of several groups, including the W3C Web Platforms Working Group and the W3C ARIA Working Group. He is an editor of several specifications at the W3C including HTML 5.1, Using ARIA in HTML, Notes on Using ARIA in HTML and HTML5: Techniques for providing useful text alternatives. He also develops and maintains HTML5accessibility.


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