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What purpose does browser-specific blocking serve?

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Here's a puzzle that I don't quite understand yet:
At the blog on Paydirt they have a post:
We don't support Internet Explorer, and we're calling that a feature
- and this has been discussed at Hacker News - here.
- where they also give a link to a very interesting post about this by one Rey Bango: Hey Paydirt: Your Site Works Just Fine in IE

I can't quite understand the rationale here, which seems to be:

* We have spent and are spending way too much time/cost tweaking and maintaining our website to work around IE browser-specific idiosyncrasies.
* Therefore:
* (a) we're not going to spend that time/cost doing that work any more.
* (b) we're going to block IE browsers. (This looks like a non sequitur - a classic logical fallacy.)
* [Unspoken] This despite the fact that our website apparently works fine with current IE browser versions. (This would seem to defeat/contradict the initial statement.)
Trying to make sense of this, I went to the Paydirt website home page, where it has the slogan:
Honest-to-goodness time tracking and invoicing for browser-based freelancers, consultants and small teams.

--- End quote ---
- which probably does not say quite what they intended it to say.

Underneath that, near the bottom of the page, is mentioned:

* SSL Security
* Chrome Extension
* Firefox Extension
I would deduce from that that the real issue could possibly be related to the work required to build in SSL security and/or develop an extension that suits the IE browser, but if that is the case, then I do not see why they don't say so, rather than go through the seemingly absurd rationale (above).

This all leads me to questions:
What might be the point behind announcing this seemingly irrational blocking (or non-support) of their potential customers who might use IE browsers? Couldn't that effectively block 50% (or more?) of their potential market? (I don't know what market share the different browsers have.) Why limit themselves by turning their backs on that potential market?

This looks like it could be a case of "cutting off one's nose to spite one's face".
Is there some valid technical reason for this?
What purpose does browser-specific blocking serve?
Is it a business purpose or a technical purpose, or a combination of both?

In 2012, I'd almost think that was a joke from the 90s, when the day was the opposite -- you had to use IE for quite a number of commercial (or corporate) websites to work based on Microsoft's proprietary APIs and funky way of writing HTML3/4. But those days are long, long gone. Hell, the latest IE is a thousand times better than the arch-evil IE6. But bad reputations are hard to live down -- just ask Google right after they say, "Anything else, officer?" when they hand over your data to the authorities.

I can reason not supporting older versions of IE because they had such a problem with rogue extensions (Browser Helper Objects and Toolbars) *and* render content differently than other browsers, including newer versions of IE. Blocking newer versions of IE that render content the same as any other browser and that have essentially 'fixed' a lot of the extension problem by making users aware of what extensions are present is nonsensical though.

Also note that NOT ALL SSL ROOT CERTIFICATE AUTHORITIES ARE PRESENT IN ALL BROWSERS. The newer CA efforts for cheap or sometimes free SSL certs, for instance, certainly are not. The root CA not being present in IE may be the issue here. Without it, every SSL protected page would cause a huge warning. UPDATE: Not the case, at least not with latest IE.

See here:

That's when you click to sign up.

IE is <insert tirade of profanity here /> miserable to code for. Still. And you need to suffer that torture for v6, 7, 8, and 9. 4x the pain.

I very well understand what they're saying --- we do not have ungodly amounts of time to waste on making things work for IE. IE is broken. Use something else.

The days of IE insanity are only worse now than before. Seriously.

Wel-l-l ... yes and no  :-\.

I've seldom had any problem(s) with Websites because of a particular browser.  But, then, I wasn't trying to do anything outre, Web-wise. 

If a site is designed for a particular browser, coded such that it only displays properly in one (1) or two (2) browsers, that burden/failing falls upon the Website developer, not upon the browser creator.  And the site owner should be cognizant of and forceful about inadequate design.

Yes, all browsers should adhere to all standards, but they don't  :(.  If a developer is too damned lazy [or ignorant] to make the site work in the four (4) or five (5) major browsers, then the site owner is the one (1) who gets hurt. 

Adding a disclaimer to the effect that a site only works in {ie|firefox|chrome|opera|safari|add your browser here} is, to my mind, just not being willing to put forth the effort to make it fully functional.  Yeah, it's extra work, but that's what developers get paid to do  :tellme:.  There's most always a workaround that will fit that particular browser's engine  :-\.

Now, another aspect is that since IE6 attained such a heinous reputation, it's sometimes considered a plus to publicly state that it is not supported.  I don't agree with that position, but 'tis not rare  :o.  'Course, all this may be moot considering the current controversy over the forthcoming -webkit debacle  :P.


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