W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-schemaorg@w3.org > March 2017

Re: Google Structured Data Testing Tool - improved support for multiple independent types

From: Robb Shecter <robb@weblaws.org>
Date: Wed, 01 Mar 2017 21:24:00 +0000
Message-ID: <CABQwFw8NTBSH4q7N1PdpKPvyX5c70snaZmn5ji7LqhB8OKCxvw@mail.gmail.com>
To: Martin Hepp <mfhepp@gmail.com>, Brian Tremblay <schema@btrem.com>
Cc: public-schemaorg@w3.org
> It's tempting but misleading to just check whether your markup has an
immediate visual effect.

True.

However, the uncertainty of the extent of schema.org support puts
publishers in a difficult position. Since json-ld isn't a compiled or
self-validating kind of code, I don't see a way to know if my schema will
(a) generate a false positive error and be silently ignored by Google
Search, (b) understood for its supertype, or (c) understood for its
specific semantic meaning. For example:

Google Search supports *Organization*, and many of its properties. Google
uses this info for in various places, which is great. Imagine I have an
Organization record for the State of Oregon's web page on my site
oregonlaws.org.

But now imagine that I learn about the more specific (and therefore
appropriate, I think) organization sub-type for my content:
*GovernmentOrganization* <https://schema.org/GovernmentOrganization>. I
consider switching to that, and maybe I do, because the Google schema
checker says it's valid. But this is a potential trap:

* Google's list of supported schema types
<https://developers.google.com/schemas/reference/> do not include
GovernmentOrganization.
* It's possible that the Google crawler will interpret the token
GovernmentOrganization as a typing mistake or unknown type, and simply
ignore it.
* Alternatively, it's possible that the crawler will understand
GovernmentOrganization to be a subtype of Organization and so keep the
info, but use it for its more generic Organization meaning.

There are probably other failure & semi-success modes I haven't thought of.
So to me, one problem is that there's no native way, in json-ld, to
identify a new & previously unknown subtype. The other issue is potential
variation between the Google schema checker and crawler's understanding of
schema.org.

On Wed, Mar 1, 2017 at 10:18 AM Martin Hepp <mfhepp@gmail.com> wrote:

> I think this is too strong  statement. The big search engines are using
> schema.org markup for a multiplicity of purposes, for a basic
> underdstanding see the old post at
>
>
> http://wiki.goodrelations-vocabulary.org/GoodRelations_for_Semantic_SEO
>
> For Knowledge Panels etc., Googles uses a much bigger part of the vocab as
> e.g. documented in the Google Dev Recipes for Rich Snippet types.
>
> It's tempting but misleading to just check whether your markup has an
> immediate visual effect.
>
> Martin
>
>
> -----------------------------------
> martin hepp  http://www.heppnetz.de
> mhepp@computer.org          @mfhepp
>
>
>
>
> > On 01 Mar 2017, at 01:57, Brian Tremblay <schema@btrem.com> wrote:
> >
> > On 2/10/17 7:07 PM, Robb Shecter wrote:
> >> What's the relationship between the tool's understanding of
> >> schema.org <http://schema.org> and the Google search engine's?
> >
> > Not much, afaict.
> >
> >> I develop web apps and use the tool to verify that the Google
> >> crawlers will successfully parse my pages, and then possibly even
> >> make use of the structured data content.
> >
> > Google only uses a few types. The ones I've seen used by Google include
> > Person, Product, Review, and Recipe. There are probably a few others.
> > But most schema.org schemas are not used by any entities, again afaict.
> >
> >> Another example: a deep (or new) subclass of Organization or
> >> LocalBusiness. If the tool recognizes it, do you happen to know
> >> whether the search engine will as well?
> >
> > If it's new, probably not.
> >
> > In general, schema.org is way out in front on structured data schemas.
> > It seems to be driven by author demand, instead of on consumer demand.
> > That is, the group creates schemas when members ask for or work on one,
> > rather than creating a schema when there's a business, web crawler, or
> > other organization that is looking for or needs one.
> >
> > That's my impression. If I'm wrong, no doubt someone will be along to
> > tell you otherwise.
> >
> > --
> > Brian Tremblay
> >
>
>
>
Received on Wednesday, 1 March 2017 21:24:45 UTC

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