The internet would be a really interesting place if every article that was shared automatically had a “via link.” Ok, so the internet is already interesting. But what makes the internet such a great place is its connectivity. Everything is linked together. We can easily share a link to an article. So many links all … The discovery metadata field Read More »
Links like these seem like throwaways, but they can have a huge amount of value in aggregate. As an example, if I provided the source of how I found this article, then it’s likely that my friend Matt would then be able to see a potential treasure trove of information about the exact same topic which he’s sure to have a lot of interest in as well.
One of the things I love about webmentions is that these sorts of links to give credit could be used to create bi-directional links between sites as well. I’m half-tempted to start using custom experimental microformats classes on these links so that when the idea takes off that people could potentially display them in their comments sections as such instead of just vanilla “mentions”. This could be useful for sites that serve as inspiration in much the same way that journalistic outlets might display reads (versus bookmarks, likes, or reposts) or podcasts could display listens. Just imagine the power that displaying webmentions on wikis could have for their editors to later update pages or readers might have to delve into further resources that mention and link to those pages, especially when the content on those linked pages extends the ideas?
Tim Berners-Lee’s original proposal for hypertext was rejected because it didn’t bake bi-directional links into the web (c.f. Webstock ‘18: Jeremy Keith – Taking Back The Web at 13:39 into the video). Webmentions seems to be a simple way of ensconcing them after-the-fact, but in a way that makes them more resilient as well as update-able and even delete-able by either side.
Of course now I come to wonder just how it was that Jeremy Cherfas finds such a deep link on Matt’s site from over a year ago? 😉