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Re: Events -- online -- how to markup?

From: Aaron Bradley <aaranged@gmail.com>
Date: Fri, 14 Jun 2013 10:24:48 -0700
Message-ID: <CAMbipBvxsTxquMxmNAShP1-u6x_i356n7UoEZQBrx6RgQrk4DQ@mail.gmail.com>
To: Stéphane Corlosquet <scorlosquet@gmail.com>
Cc: Ali Watters <ali.watters@creativelive.com>, Public Vocabs <public-vocabs@w3.org>
There was a discussion of online events in December that looked at
precisely these issues; see:
http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-vocabs/2012Dec/0032.html

Without repeating everything I said there, I think two things stand out in
regard to online events:

(1) Event properties inadequate for describing online events

The properties you can currently declare for schema.org/Event and more
specific Event types don't enable you to express important properties
associated with an online event.  In short, useful information about online
events often fall into categories that can readily be defined by properties
of CreativeWork.  (Sometimes this is true of brick-and-mortar events as
well; for example, it's anything but uncommon for events to be reviewed
online, but because "review" isn't a property of Event, there's no way, for
example, to point to a URL that is a review of that event.  Aside from
seemingly being conceived of to express information about events occurring
in a physical location, the Event type also seems to have been focused on
upcoming rather than past events.  Another example is that there's no way
of linking published conference proceedings to the EducationEvent or
BusinessEvent from which they were derived.)

(2) A new Event type is worth considering, but...

As others have noted, the Event property location is required by data
consumers such as Google.  While that doesn't directly impact the schema,
it does suggest that a new Event type ("OnlineEvent" or "VirtualEvent")
could data consumers more readily differentiate between brick-and-mortar
and virtual events.  However, this would rob webmasters of the benefits of
using the more specific Event types already defined; it may well be that
the addition of new properties (accessible by all Event types) might keep
this simpler.

The issues that make Event problematic for online events can brought into
focus by looking at Google Hangouts, which are very much virtual events.
For example, here's a typical music hangout:
https://plus.google.com/events/cdrj5poa53gsjm0qclc9aeeaki8

All of the properties of MusicEvent are applicable here (the url property
being that of the above).  But, on one hand, the oft-required property
"location" is not applicable within the confines of the expected types
Place or PostalAddress.  On the other hand, the video that appears on this
event page can't be described with the current properties of MusicEvent
(and, ironically, UserPlusOne can't be used to declare the number of +1s
recorded for this event, even though this is a type of interactionCount - a
property of UserInteraction, which is a more specific type of Event!).



On Fri, Jun 14, 2013 at 7:16 AM, Stéphane Corlosquet
<scorlosquet@gmail.com>wrote:

>
>
> On Thu, Jun 13, 2013 at 3:43 PM, Ali Watters <ali.watters@creativelive.com
> > wrote:
>
>> Hi,
>>
>> When marking up events what is considered best practice for events that
>> can be attended online?
>>
>> Events appears to be requiring a physical location via Place.
>>
>> Example
>>
>>
>>    1.   <div itemprop="location" itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/Place">
>>
>>    2.     <a itemprop="url" href="wells-fargo-center.html">
>>
>>    3.     Wells Fargo Center
>>    4.     </a>
>>    5.     <div itemprop="address" itemscope itemtype="http://schema.org/PostalAddress">
>>
>>    6.       <span itemprop="addressLocality">Philadelphia</span>,
>>
>>    7.       <span itemprop="addressRegion">PA</span>
>>    8.     </div>
>>    9.   </div>
>>
>>
>> Would omitting address and just including url be appropriate?
>>
>> Using google's data highlighter address is listed as required -- how
>> closely does the data highlighter match the spec?
>>
> Personally I usually use a string (e.g. "Online") as value for location,
> but I'm also curious to hear if there is a better way to do this.
>
> Steph.
>
Received on Friday, 14 June 2013 17:25:15 UTC

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