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One particularly interesting use case that seems to keep popping up is that of understanding what a page represents.

This page is for collecting research, ideas, and brainstorms about using microformats to represent what a page is (or is about).

microformats do a good job of allowing authors to easily markup various semantics in pages such as people, events, reviews etc., however, there are only a few examples (XFN - The XHTML Friends Network, rel="me", representative hCard) of using microformats to designate what a whole page means or represents.


Perhaps move this to page-examples once it grows a bit.

Examples on the web of pages which represent particular types of objects.


Wikipedia has pages that represent or are about numerous types of objects. Typically they use specific "infobox" templates to distinguish them.

  • ... (links to specific Wikipedia pages that represent specific types of objects)


Perhaps move this to page-formats once it grows a bit.

existing microformats usage


Facebook Open Graph Protocol

Facebook's Open Graph Protocol introduces a meta-tag based format for expressing that a page is or is about a particular type of thing. The following types of objects are represented:


  • activity
  • sport


  • bar
  • company
  • cafe
  • hotel
  • restaurant


  • cause
  • sports_league
  • sports_team


  • band
  • government
  • non_profit
  • school
  • university


  • actor
  • athlete
  • author
  • director
  • musician
  • politician
  • public_figure


  • city
  • country
  • landmark
  • state_province

Products and Entertainment

  • album
  • book
  • drink
  • food
  • game
  • product
  • song
  • movie
  • tv_show


  • blog
  • website
  • article


Perhaps move this to page-brainstorming once it grows a bit.

microformat root class on html or body

One simple technique that could work for all microformats is to put the root class name of the microformat on the <html> (permitted in Microformats in HTML5), or if not, then the <body> element.

A page that represents an event:

<!DOCTYPE html>
<html class="vevent">

A page that represents a review:

<body class="hreview">

This is a simple/easy rule to remember for publishers.

For processors/parsers, the rule is simple as well:

  • check the <html> for microformats root class names, if found, treat the page as that type (or types?) of object
  • else check the <body> for microformats root class names, if found, treat the page as that type (or types?) of object
  • else perform any format-specific detection

see also