1 minute read

So I learned this the hard way…

There is a translation service in almost every browser these days, which translates all the texts on a website to user-preferred language.

Browsers (like Chrome) would replace a text with a <font> markup tag like this:

// original
<div>Some Text</div>

// Translated
  <font style="vertical-align: inherit;">
    <font style="vertical-align: inherit;">一些文字</font>

And, this will ruin your DOM and therefore React.js would stop working. Mostly, if you have a condition before your text like this:

// this will throw error after browser auto-translate
{this.state.checked && "Some Text"}

Most probably your user are going to get an error like below when their browser does the auto-translation, and believe me it’s really hard to know about this happening to your users or even to debug it.

Failed to execute ‘removeChild’ on ‘Node’: The node to be removed is not a child of this node.

The node referenced by React is replaced completely with a <font> node, therefore reactjs cannot find that node anymore. hence the error above.

You can disable this feature for all of your users across the world with the following meta tag:

<meta name="google" content="notranslate">

However, as you have already guessed, this is not good user experience and I wouldn’t recommend doing this.

Solution 2: Wrap texts with

This is what I have decided to do for my mood recommendation ai web app. It’s easy and effective. All you need to do is to avoid using bare texts and Always Always Always put your texts in between <span></span> .

This way, when Chrome or other browsers replace the text with nodes, the node around it stays the same and therefore react would not lose its reference to the node.

// Correct way of using texts in Reactjs and Nextjs
{condition && <span>Welcome</span>}


You can read more about it on this React Github issue.

Voila! now you are going to have happy users from all over the world.