[uf-discuss] rel=tag problem

David Meade meade.dave at gmail.com
Tue Mar 11 06:14:24 PST 2008

Microformat Folks -

  I was hoping that some of you who are well versed on what is or
isn't a microformat specification (vs draft), and specifically the
rel=tag microformat could weigh in on an issue that WordPress seems to
be having with their rel=tag implementation.  Many of us believe
they've implemented it incorrectly and thus are excluding WordPress
users from getting tags aggregated correctly. The WordPress folks,
however seem to disagree and insist that the rel=tag is just a draft
and doesn't actually state that spaces should be encoded as +  or %20.

When tagging posts in wordpress with a two-word tags (lets say the
tags are "home movie") ... wordpress replaces the space with a dash
(-) resulting in "home-movie" (rather than "home+movie" as is
described in the microformats specification)  These are of course is
an entirely different things as far as most aggregators/tag clouds
such as technorati are concerned.

Take for example: In wordpress if you provide the following list of
comma separated tags for a post:

tag1, tag2, tag3 tag4, tag5-tag6, tag7+tag8

WordPress creates the following rel="tag" links:


Notice the following big problems:

1) You can't as a wordpress user even manually use th e+ as the
specification requires ... wordpress concatenates the two wholy
changing the meaning of the tag

2) Clearly "tag3 tag4" and "tag5-tag6" are both represented the same
way.  This is a huge problem:

Take for example the tags "my wet suit" and "my wet-suit". These are
distinct tags that carry different meanings.  But in Wordpress they
would both result in the same tag URL: "my-wet-suit" even though they
are separate tags. Using the only correct way to encode URLs (RFC
1738) they would remain distinct "my%20wet%20suit" and "my%20wet-suit"
respectively - or as accepted in HTML (and stated in the microformats
specification document): "my+wet+suit" and "my+wet-suit".

  This is actively preventing WordPress users from having their posts
correctly tagged at aggregators.

  I opened a feature request with WordPress to address this, however
they insist that rel=tag is a draft which doesn't state how spaces
should be handled, and that the microformat specification should
change to do things the way wordpress does (which is ... poorly).

  If those of us who are concerned about this being implemented
incorrectly are wrong, please let me know and I'll forward that
education on to the mailing lists that have been discussing this ...
but if we're correct in our belief that WordPress has implemented
rel=tag incorrectly ... is there anyway that the microformats group
could provide them some clarification from the source of the
specification?  They so far are determined to not fix it.

 The Wordpress trac ticket related to this can be found at the following url:

Thanks in advance for any help or clarification,

- Dave


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