When an image specified with an img element is missing from a web page, some browsers display the alt text instead. Why not all browsers do that is a separate topic which I talk a bit about in Safari, WebKit and alt text for missing images.

I think most people will agree that it is a good thing for web browsers to display the contents of an image’s alt attribute when the image is missing or broken, or image rendering has been disabled. However, many web professionals forget to check what the alternative text will actually look like in those cases.

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