There’s a small back story to this entry. Ive been working with an open source content management system for my company Magicomm and it eventually came time when we decided we were going to start our own blog. My goal was to use the preexisting framework of the CMS to smoothly integrate the blogging software into the back end of the system. It turns out this was the easy part….
So now the goal of this entry. When it came time to output the data into your common blog format I found that their were some small things that helped my blog get indexed by popular blog directories as well as other assorted social media aggregations.
So ultimately I’m assuming you understand the general format and benefits of a blog. You’ve got your title, author, timestamp, and a post of some sort. Other optional features include keywords, permalinks, comments, and an RSS feed.
Now I want to go into a little more detail about the code side of this and show you where some simple HTML syntax separates the blog from the..um… not-blog.
First I’ll talk a little about my favorite blogging feature, the ‘rel-tag‘. Rel-tag is basically a keyword that physically sits on your screen as apposed to META keywords which hide in your page’s header. Now when you’re displaying ‘rel-tag’ that relate to a specific post you use the relationship attribute of the anchor tag to define the hypertext as a ‘tag’.
As you can see it it pretty simple to establish a tag. Basically rel-tag is a MicroFormat and what you are doing is declaring that this link is an author-designated keyword for this post. Also note that in the URL of the link I’ve separated the two words with a + sign instead of a space (You could also use %20). You want to try and be sure that your tags relate and are appropriate for your post. Alot of social media aggregators use this information along with specific information in your RSS feed to categorize your post and you can often see your tags displayed on sites such as technorati.com and mybloglog.com.
The second thing I would like to talk about are permalinks which are also often called bookmarks. Permalinks are basically links back to a specific entry that will never change. This makes them ideal for bookmarking which is why it comes as no surprise that the following helps you establish a permalink/bookmark.
As you can see we once again use the relationship tag to define the Permalink. This is not always necessary however Ive found that certain social media sites use the bookmark relationship to determine if this link is a permalink or not.
Now last but not least there is the RSS feed. I could go on forever about the different formats and everything you can stuff into a solid feed, but i wont. The only thing i want to mention here is how to make your feed available to social media sites (seems to be the theme here). Basically what you do is use a combination of rel=”alternate” and type=”application/rss+xml” to define a META link to an RSS file.
Thats pretty much it. I hope that between the 3 things I’ve showed you and some of the resources ive presented you should have a social media friendly blog thats ready for the masses.