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(Pocket-lint) - Dean Hachamovitch, the chap who heads up the Internet Explorer team at Microsoft, has responded to the rising furor over the use of IE6 on the web. Many feel that the browser should be culled and users forced to upgrade.

Hachamovitch points out that "the choice to upgrade software on a PC belongs to the person responsible for the PC". It isn't for the browser manufacturer, or the websites, or anyone else to decide whether a browser should be upgraded - it's up to the user, he says.

He added: "Dropping support for IE6 is not an option because we committed to supporting the IE included with Windows for the lifespan of the product. We keep our commitments. Many people expect what they originally got with their operating system to keep working".

"We’ve blogged before about keeping users in control of their PCs, usually in the context of respecting user choice of search settings or browser defaults. We’ll continue to strongly encourage Windows users to upgrade to the latest IE. We will also continue to respect their choice, because their browser is their choice", he says.

Should sites continue to support IE6, even though it eats up a large chunk of development time for a relatively small percentage of users? Share your thoughts on the debate in the comments.

Writing by Duncan Geere.