Web publishers harbor a wealth of information about their content including bylines, thumbnails, images, datelines, tags and summaries. But this data resides behind the scenes in offline databases. By the time this data is rendered into HTML and sent to your browser, almost all of its underlying structure is lost. This has several negative consequences for the web publishing industry.
The social, search and aggregation sites that publishers rely on for referral traffic have little structured data to format links attractively. Furthermore advertising networks don't have access to article tags, a valuable source for contextual clues. Search engines are left to guess at which portions of a document contain actual content and which contain advertising and navigation data. Screen readers for the sight-impaired have no reliable method of determining which portions of the page to voice.
To address these shortcomings, The International Press Telecommunications Council (IPTC) has developed rNews - a new standard for embedding publishing metadata into online documents using RDFa. At this month's event, members of the IPTC will provide us with an overview of their organizations, argue the business case for semantic markup, introduce us to RDF/RDFa, and give us a thorough introduction to rNews.
The IPTC is a consortium of the world's major news agencies, news publishers and news industry vendors. It develops and maintains technical standards for improved news exchange that are used by virtually every major news organization in the world. The IPTC's latest standard is now rNews - a new standard for embedding publishing metadata into HTML documents using RDFa.
Andreas Gebhard - Getty Images
Stuart Myles - The Associated Press
Evan Sandhaus - The New York Times Company
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