The day after Thanksgiving is traditionally known for shopping, but Alexis Madrigal of The Atlantic this week suggested an alternative purpose: quietly dumping the ancient Internet Explorer 6 from your parents’ computers while visiting home for the holidays, in the interest of making the web more secure for everyone.
For Microsoft, this suggestion brings both risk and opportunity. Although the Atlantic advises against such radical change, there’s always the chance that a tech-savvy kid will switch a parental PC not to a new version of Internet Explorer, but rather to Firefox, Chrome, or another browser.
But the Redmond company is fully on board with this new holiday, endorsing it in a blog post today and suggesting upgrades to IE8 for Windows XP machines and IE9 for Windows Vista and Windows 7.
The IE team even came up with a tongue-in-cheek top 10 list offering suggestions for distracting your parents long enough to make the upgrade. It won’t be appearing on David Letterman anytime soon, but hey, it’s not too bad for a bunch of browser geeks.
Microsoft has been tracking the decline of IE6 on a special site. Internet Explorer’s overall market share has been declining across all computers, but Microsoft has been focusing on the rising market share of Internet Explorer 9 on Windows 7, the latest versions of its browser and operating system.