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Current Comments Formats

There have been several efforts to define data formats for posting "comments" on the Web.

This page serves to document the current list of comment schemas, formats, and efforts as background for the design of a simple comments MicroFormat.

Examples from the wild

<div class="comments-body">
<p>Congratulations!  Any list that includes Molly Holzschlag and Wil Wheaton is certainly something... 
and that's just the Honorable Mentions.</p>

<p>Now to scrape the links of all the rest of those "people you may not know but probably should"...</p>
<span class="comments-post">Posted by: 
<a href="">Chris</a> 
at June 21, 2005 08:53 PM</span>
 <div class="mfcomment">
    <a class="url" rel="target" href=">
    <span class="commenter">anonymous</span>
    <abbr class="dtcommented" title="20050612T21:30-0700">June 12th, 2005</abbr>
    <div class="description">
        <p>Gosh, this is neat.</p>
    <a class="url" rel="self bookmark" href="">link to this comment</a>
 </div> Granted, this is not XHTML, but still should be useful as an example of expressing comments structurally.

 <ul class="xoxo comments">
    <li id="c836428">
       Posted on <a href="COMMENT PERMALINK" title="COMMENT TIMESTAMP (unix timestamp in seconds or nanoseconds)">COMMENT DATE POSTED</a>
   by <a href="AUTHOR URL">AUTHOR NAME</a>
            <dd>COMMENT BODY</dd>

from [1]

	<ol id="commentlist">
		<li class="alt" id="comment-1143">
		<h3 class="commenttitle"><a href='' rel='external nofollow'>virginie</a> said,</h3>
		<p class="commentmeta">June 6, 2006 @ <a href="#comment-1143" title="Permanent link to this comment">9:02 pm</a></p>
		<p>Nice hairdo! I really think it suits you! And the color is different from the last times, isn’t it?</p>

from [2]

<dl id='comments-block'>
   <dt class='comment-author openid-comment-icon' id='c5069974981380830367'>
      <a name='c5069974981380830367'></a>
      <a href='' rel='nofollow'>Bill</a>

   <dd class='comment-body'>
      <p>testing an OpenID comment</p>
   <dd class='comment-footer'>
      <span class='comment-timestamp'>
         <a href='' title='comment permalink'>
            September 24, 2008 5:32 AM
         <span class='item-control blog-admin pid-216793578'>
            <a href='' title='Delete Comment'>
               <img src=''/>

Guy Fraser: Are comments not just another form of atom? Could we use something like hEntry ?

Matt MacDougall: Comments should be separate from hEntry to give systems the capability to weight a comment differently than its parent entry. Modifying hEntry to include parent child relationships would become borderline human unfriendly.

Phil Peace: It seems to me that a comments microformat would be a specialization/subset of hreview. This would chime with the recent Google RDFa push.

comments-formats was last modified: Thursday, August 27th, 2009