This is with 2000-10-10-21/Linux (Mozilla nightly). If a link (<a> only contains a onClick="" and not a href="foo" then it looks like a normal <span> i.e. as if there where no link. (This includes colour, underlining and cursor.) Netscape 4.75/Linux shows the same, but it doesn't (seem) to support onClick. "12.2 The A element" is not clear how to handle this case. I think it makes sense to support this if there is onClick (since it acts like a link in this case). Opera 4.0b4/Linux handles it the very same as Mozilla does presently. I would either see this fixed or marked as invalid (both after some discussion).
[Drop in from the mid-air collision:] Unlike the HTML 4.01 specification the CSS 2 specification states in "5.11.2 The link pseudo-classes: :link and :visited": "The document language determines which elements are hyperlink source anchors. For example, in HTML 4.0, the link pseudo-classes apply to A elements with an 'href' attribute." Reading this would make it INVALID, since I think that is not that clear that onClick shouldn't act like href I wrote to firstname.lastname@example.org for discussion/verification (subject=":links and HTML" if you search).
Marking VERIFIED. Tobias, if the reply from W3 is that it should look like a link, just reopen this. Thanks. -d
SPAM. HTML Element component deprecated, changing component to Layout. See bug 88132 for details.