It is a small part of an #IndieWeb suite of open protocols including Micropub, WebSub, and Microsub for allowing site to site communication and interaction which goes to the broader scope of your question about RSS feeds and blogs. See also: Lost Infrastructure
I keep meaning to provide a better overview of it all, but this recent pencast overview captures a chunk of it. Aaron Parecki’s article Building an IndieWeb Reader captures some of the rest of the microsub/reader portion.
15:27 aaronpk: “my post permalinks now have a rel=alternate link to an mf2 and jf2 JSON version of the post”
And continued over the next several hours and days primarily with participation of aaronpk, GWG, and pfefferle among a few others.
David Shanske (GWG) and I discussed an overview of it in the most recent episode of An IndieWeb Podcast. The conversation about rel=”alternate” begins at the 11:00 minute mark.
Somewhere there’s a note that GWG has already built a big chunk of code into the Webmention/Semantic Linkbacks plugin that implements a large chunk of the work already. There’s also some work done in https://github.com/indieweb/wordpress-mf2-feed as well.
This also means that when we use Post Kinds to reply to her, the built-in parser will find her name and photo automatically.
I do notice that it’s missing picking up her website URL properly. I suspect it’s because she left her user profile’s Website field (located at
It all reminds me of something my friend P.M. Forni once told me about his own writing as a scholar of the early Italian Renaissance. He said he thought it was sad that only about eleven people would ever read any of his academic writing at a very deep level, but he was far more gratified to be able to write prescriptive books on the area of civility and living a better life that were featured on Oprah and had readers in the millions. I’m happy to write on these topics and have no readers–besides myself–whatsoever.
Of course all of this to say, that as educators we still ought to provide relatively safe spaces for students to try on ideas, make arguments, and see what comes of it without damaging them in the long run.
I’ve read many online documents that have been annotated by many others, most of them in the early days of Genius.com when it was known as Rap Genius. It has been a while, however, since I’ve read something like boyd’s It’s Complicated with so many annotations by others. It is quite refreshing to see a relatively high level of work and commentary on a piece (compared to the typical dreck that one can find in most online newspapers’ comments sections.) I suspect that for some performative nature may come into play, but I find this less of a factor on more scholarly facing platforms like Hypothesis (compared to Genius.com or Twitter). Certainly one can get caught up in the idea of becoming famous or popular for their commentary.
As boyd points out in the introduction to her book, this sort of thing seems to be common human nature:
None of the videos they made were of especially high quality, and while they shared them publicly on YouTube, only their friends watched them. Still, whenever they got an additional view—even if only because they forced a friend to watch the video—they got excited.
In the end, some of it may come down to audience. For whom are you writing, annotating, or working? The vast majority of the time, I’m writing and documenting for myself. Anyone else that stumbles upon the conversation may hopefully only make it more interesting, but as often as not, except for an occasional class no one notices–and even then they may not publicly comment.
As for boyd’s book, I’m somewhat less than impressed. I’m aware of much of her work and appreciate the role she plays in the broader public conversation, but I’ve been far too close to the topic she’s writing about for far too long. I view it in a somewhat more historical framework and slightly different viewpoint than she. As a result, she’s not telling me much I didn’t already know or haven’t thought about for quite a while. I suspect that my commentary in my annotations may make this a bit more clear.
Perhaps we all went to meme-speak because you had subtly primed us to go there? You could try a nice experiment when you teach this course again…
This is awesome. What might otherwise be a relatively dull update is suddenly awesome and entertaining to watch. I may lose the month to playing around with Plotagon now.
I do wish they had a way to do embeds directly though. The iframe isn’t the best and I suspect is doing wonky things for the page, though at least it’s viewable. Perhaps using the page’s .mp4 with <video> tags?
I’d sent you a separate note on your metadata problem, but while I’m thinking about the broader issues, one interesting person who does immediately come to mind (thought not a specialist in microformats) is Kris Shaffer, who is a digital humanist, data scientist, and a digital media specialist. Recently he was a scholar with the Division of Teaching and Learning Technologies at University of Mary Washington before heading into the private sector. I suspect he may have some interest as well as relevant experience for problems like this and could point you in some interesting directions.
I can’t help but thinking that this may be a potential use case for microformats. I notice there’s already some useful pages and research on music and even sheet music on their website.
If nothing else, I’d recommend that you or others delving into the process of looking at music metadata try to emulate the process behind what microformats are and how they work. I think it’s highly useful to take an overview of what and how people are already doing things in real life situations, figure out common patterns, and then documenting them to make the overall scope of work potentially smaller as well as to indicate a best path forward. Many companies will have created proprietary formats and methods which are likely to be highly incompatible or described, but not actually implemented in actual practice. (Hint: avoid unimplemented suggestions at all costs.) Your small polling sample already indicates a lot of variability, and I suspect your poll is very biased give people who would most likely be following your account.
A good starting point for answering your problem might be to do a bit of reading on microformats and then asking questions in the microformat community’s online chat. I suspect there are several people in the community who have done large-scale work on the web and categorization who might be able to help you out as well as point you in the direction of prior art and others who are working on these problems.
If you need help in understanding some of the microformats material, I’m happy to help you out via phone or online video chat and introduce you to some folks in the area.
I’ve outlined a bit of how read posts on the web can send notifications to journal articles to allow them to better track traffic. Similar to use cases I’ve outlined for podcasts which have some large aggregate download data, but absolutely no actual “I listened to this particular episode” data, explicit read webmentions for journal articles could be a boon to these journals as well as to the greater research enterprise.
Separately but similarly, it would be nice if journals could take advantage of annotation platforms like Hypothes.is (especially if they sent webmentions to the canonical links or DOIs for .pdfs) to get a better idea of how closely, or not, academics are reading and annotating their works.
The closest thing I can think of currently for this is Aaron Parecki’s open sourced Quill app which works via micropub (to both WordPress and/or micro.blog hosted, or to WordPress and then syndicated via feed to micro.blog). I suspect that, depending on how one authenticates, Quill could (?) be aware of syndicated copies to micro.blog and be able to edit the posts on both platforms after-the-fact. Since Quill is a (progressive?) web app, it could be used as a mobile app on both iOS and Android.
As an aside, I notice your WordPress blog shows a generic: “This Article was mentioned on micro.blog.” line in many of your comments. Are you doing this by design, or are you unaware of the Symantic Linkbacks plugin which will help to take webmentions to your site and help turn them into more friendly looking replies within your comments section?
I ought to do more frequent tidying, but having done a major purge last year just before I moved into a new house has made a huge difference in my life and general happiness level.