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Just as there are design-patterns to encourage and follow, there are anti-design-patterns to discourage and avoid.
rel="formatname", e.g. rel="hcard"
- Indicating the type of the information does not indicate the semantic. This was one of the mistakes in the design of XML-RPC (citation needed) and should not be propagated to rel values.
- In particular such a rel value fails to capture and represent/indicate an explicit semantic, like "this over here is my hCard". See hCard brainstorming on auto-discovery for current thoughts on this problem.