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I find myself back here again!
@Erik et al who think that the whatwg are on the wrong side of this:
Once again I would say that NOWHERE does the WHATWG suggest its reasoning is based on styling, that was purely this article author’s opinion!
The usage you seem to be promoting as ‘more sematically correct’ is just using <cite> as a way of quoting someone – are the 2 html elements we currently have for that purpose insufficient?
Whilst a common english usage of a citation can be to refer to a person, the scholarly usage is specifically about sources, if you’re refering to something a person said in converstation what problem do you have with considering that a quote rather than a citation?