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RE: Is the current definition of the article element in HTML useful?

From: Léonie Watson <tink@tink.co.uk>
Date: Wed, 23 Jan 2013 12:52:43 -0000
To: "'Robin Berjon'" <robin@w3.org>, "'Steve Faulkner'" <faulkner.steve@gmail.com>
Cc: "'HTMLWG WG'" <public-html@w3.org>
Message-ID: <001501cdf968$8ae1a0d0$a0a4e270$@tink.co.uk>
Robin Berjon wrote:
"Which is not to say that I want to reject outright your proposal to
reassess <article> advice (and I do lament the fact that it is likely too
late to rename it <infolump>) but it would be a lot easier to figure out
whether it's worth changing something if you made a more concrete proposal
as to what you think should change."

I wonder if the opening paragraphs about article could be amended slightly
to remove reference to comments? Scratch attempt follows...

The article element represents a self-contained composition in a document,
page, application or site. The composition should be independently
distributable or re-usable without loss of context or meaning, through
syndication for example. This could be a forum post, a blog entry, a
magazine or newspaper article, a video player or other interactive widget,
or any other independent item of content.

When article elements are nested, the inner article elements represent
self-contained compositions that are related to the contents of the outer
article. For instance a website that features book reviews could represent
an image of a book cover and its cover text as an article, nested within the
article element for the book review.

Léonie.	
 


-----Original Message-----
From: Robin Berjon [mailto:robin@w3.org] 
Sent: 23 January 2013 12:03
To: Steve Faulkner
Cc: HTMLWG WG
Subject: Re: Is the current definition of the article element in HTML
useful?

Hi Steve,

On 23/01/2013 11:41 , Steve Faulkner wrote:
> I think the definition of the article element in HTML [1] is overly 
> vague and broad, which leads to intended and unintended use that 
> undermines its usefulness as a semantic construct for users that 
> actually consume its semantics such as screen reader users.

I personally don't have a problem with its vagueness. Assigning overly
strict semantics to elements leads to DocBook, and if DocBook is what we
want then I would recommend DocBook. Vagueness does open the door to my
cherished repurposability. But obviously you need to strike a balance lest
all become a <div>.

Which is not to say that I want to reject outright your proposal to reassess
<article> advice (and I do lament the fact that it is likely too late to
rename it <infolump>) but it would be a lot easier to figure out whether
it's worth changing something if you made a more concrete proposal as to
what you think should change.

> For example, the spec promotes the use of article as a container of, 
> well, an article and also for each instance of a comment on an article
> (example: [2]).
> Yet there is no defined method of exposing the semantic differences 
> between an article in the common understanding of the term and when 
> used as defined in the broader HTML definition.

It is true that offering to reuse <article> for comments perhaps reflects a
pre-YouTube Habermasian optimism in the public sphere's competency. But I
can't say I entirely dislike that.

Concerning exposing the semantic differences between the two, why not handle
that with RDFa/Microdata? See http://schema.org/Comment and
http://schema.org/Article? Or perhaps more appropriately for this specific
usage http://schema.org/BlogPosting and http://schema.org/UserComments?

-- 
Robin Berjon - http://berjon.com/ - @robinberjon
Received on Wednesday, 23 January 2013 12:53:09 GMT

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