- Sam Johnston (Australian Online Solutions)
- Chris Shiflett (OmniTI) rev=canonical
- Kellan Elliott-McCrae (Flickr) rev=canonical
- Robert Spychala (Snaplog) rel=shorturl
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The problem-space that rel-shortlink is attempting to solve must be first taken through the microformats The microformats process before any specific brainstorm can be properly evaluated, and potentially added as a microformat. Necessary pages:
- shortlink examples - to document existing uses of pages publishing short links for themselves, whether or not they actually use rel="shortlink" (e.g. Flickr.com, various wiki pages like http://tantek.pbworks.com/CommunicationProtocols hCard supporting user profiles)
- shortlink formats - documentation of previous (or subsequent) attempts at shorlink formats (e.g. formats listed in the "inferior alternatives" section at the end of this page could be moved to this separate page)
- shortlink brainstorming - documentation of why/how rel="shortlink" was developed/proposed, along with reasoning of why other shortlink formats may be inadequate (extract that from the "inferior alternatives" section at the end of this page)
rel="shortlink"to a [hyper]link, a page indicates that the hyperlink may be used for space constrained and/or manual entry (e.g. printed or spoken) applications and that the destination of that hyperlink carries the same meaning (even if formatting such as sort order and hightlighting is lost). Typical use cases include pasting links into microblogging services such as Twitter and anywhere manual entry is required (e.g. printed or spoken URLs).
On a page like http://www.flickr.com/photos/tantek/3909804165/ it could have HTML to indicate a shortlink in one of two ways:
<link rel="shortlink" type="text/html" href="http://flic.kr/p/6XuLyD">
shortlink: <a rel="shortlink" type="text/html" href="http://flic.kr/p/6XuLyD"> http://flic.kr/p/6XuLyD </a>
In addition, a request for a page like http://www.flickr.com/photos/tantek/3909804165/ should return as part of the HTTP headers:
Link: <http://flic.kr/p/6XuLyD>; rel="shortlink"
<dl class="profile"> <dt id="rel">rel</dt> <dd><p> <a rel="help" href="http://www.w3.org/TR/html401/struct/links.html#adef-rel"> HTML4 definition of the 'rel' attribute.</a> Here is an additional value.</p> <dl> <dt id="shortlink">shortlink</dt> <dd>Indicates that the referred resource carries the same meaning as the referring page (even if formatting such as sort order and highlighting is lost) and that the link may be used for space constrained and/or manual entry (e.g. printed or spoken) applications.</dd> </dl> </dd> </dl>
examples in the wild
This section is informative. Note: There are numerous uses of rel-shortlink in the wild, this is very much an incomplete list. If your site marked up with rel-shortlink, feel free to add it to the top of this list. Once the list grows too big, we'll make a separate wiki page (rel-shortlink-examples-in-wild).
- Media UK uses it on each of their directory pages, using their muk.fm shortening service.
- CMS Market uses it on each of their directory and news pages. They'll be releasing their tool as a GPL'd Joomla component at some point as well.
- WordPress.com uses it on ~7 million blogs with their WP.me URL shortening service.
- RelShortLink is an open source Python implementation hosted on Google App Engine which scans both HTTP headers and HTML links for
- Wordpress 'shortlink' plugin embeds
rel=shortlinklinks into Wordpress blogs.
- Yedda.com (an AOL company), uses it on all question pages with their internal short URLs mechanism.
- Google Code 'shortlink' project
- Introducing rel="shortlink" - a better alternative to URL shorteners
- rel=shortlink: url shortening that really doesn't hurt the Internet
- rel="shortlink" proposal for advertising short URLs in HTML/HTTP thread on IETF apps-discuss
rev=deprecated in HTML 5
rev=is easily confused with
rel=, thus creating extreme danger for clueless webmasters
- implies that referring URL is the canonical URL, thus should only be used for the canonical URL itself
- implies that a complete list of referring URLs is offered, when in fact there are infinite possibilities
- See also mnot's Counting the ways that rev="canonical" hurts the Web
- Scorched earth thanks to "shortcut icon" (now just "icon" in HTML 5) - rel is a space separated list for HTML at least
- Ambiguous as to whether it refers to the URL or the content itself (e.g. abstract).
- Too many possible permutations: short[_- ]?ur[il] -> shorturl, short_url, short-url, "short url", short_uri, short-uri, "short uri", etc. leads to implementations supporting multiple variations.
- Intellectual property issues:
- Trademark status claimed by shorturl.com (shortlink infringes no known common law or registered trademarks)
- Copyright protected specification (shortlink specification is public domain)
- Patent status unknown (shortlink carries a patent pledge and has no known patents)
- No effort to standardise via the usual processes (shortlink was submitted to IETF/W3C for discussion)