I use the author tag where I work, it's our standard/convention... besides accessibility, it's helpful in tracking down the right people to fix or update their stuff.
Ya sure "Author META Tag is mandatory" but it is useful for SEO point of view.
I don't use it for validation, I use it because idiot copyright thieves usually help my case by leaving it intact!
Until today, I'd said it was SEO neutral; no harm, no benefit - but perhaps I was a little hard on the poor thing!
But which search engine found them? I've never noticed an author tag in my results.
|But which search engine found them? |
|I've never noticed an author tag in my results. |
You won't see it. That is what caused me to go digging and where I found the name reference in the Author META Tag, that was the only place.
I've seen similar results in Google based on meta keywords not found on the page--it seems Google masks out code and indexes all discretionary content in a page. I've also seen stems and synomyms that aren't on a page at all return it in G (such as place name abbreviations), but that's a different matter.
Nice find, will have to test.
PageOne - what does Google's cache version of that url you found in the results say for the critical keyword? I assume there's no on-page highlighting, so does the top frame say "only found in links pointing to..."?
|PageOne - what does Google's cache version. |
Heh! I knew that was coming.
<meta name="robots" content="noarchive" />
I've had a little private chat with PageOne, and located some anchor text on another website that is a more likely cause of this SERP, in my opinion.
the page might have ranked because he had some incoming links mentioning his name. it might not have had anything to do with the author tag.
Yup, I got spanked! There is this lonely ole' link reference of just the name sitting out there. The destination page is void of any content other than some metadata. That one link reference was all it took.
That still doesn't stop me from continuing to follow WAI-A protocol and use the META Author Tag. :)
Guess we posted at about the same time, londrum. After some detective work, we discovered that indeed, anchor text is in play here.
Thanks to PageOne for letting me research this. Even though we found an alternate explanation, it's always good to remember that Google is continually experimenting, looking for new relevance signals.
we all got excited for a minute because we thought we could improve our rankings.
guess it's back to the drawing board again
You had me running around checking out author meta elements for a while there ;)
I don't know if the element is in wide enough use, but if Google did decide to use it, I could imagine something like the attribution you see above Google book results.
i still haven't found a reference that indicates any wai guidelines for the meta author tag.
Meta description, keywords, language, and robots are required for WAI AAA compliance. Only some of the pages on Version 2.8 of my site pass this though I've been making the effort to ensure all pages on Version 2.9 will be WAI AAA compliant but it's not an easy feat!
There is a P3P validator however it's a commercial product and you can only validate a domain once a minute. Since we can't post links and it doesn't show up on the first page on Google I'll simply recommend finding it in the tools menu of Chris Pederick's Web Developer toolbar for Firefox. :)
|I still haven't found a reference that indicates any wai guidelines for the meta author tag. |
You know, I may be mistaken on the validation requirement. The tool that I used regularly is no longer available (Watchfire) and I could have sworn there was a statement in the validation reports about the META Author Tag. I cannot locate any specific reference to it and validation. But, I can find plenty of references to the suggestion for its use. Does that count? ;)
I think I may have been confusing META Language. But, if you are using those elements the way they should be, you will most likely have META Author Tags there to refine the document further. In addition to using the
Here is some backup for the META Author Tag from the "suggestive" standpoint.
Metadata for Accessibility
|Metadata for Accessibility |
Checkpoint 13.2 of the W3C accessibility guidelines states that you should provide metadata to add semantic information to pages and sites. You should include author name, company rights, type of content, etc.
Guideline 13. Provide clear navigation mechanisms.
|13.2 Provide metadata to add semantic information to pages and sites. [Priority 2] |
For example, use RDF ([RDF]) to indicate the document's author, the type of content, etc.
And then we have this current test which presents the Failures in the area we are discussing. Based on what I'm seeing, the Author Element is not part of the mix.
|Rule: 13.2.2 - Documents are required to use META elements, that are defined as required, in Head section. |
* Failure - Document does not contain a META element with the required name: description or description does not have a 'content' value.
* Failure - Document does not contain a META element with the required name: keywords or keywords does not have a 'content' value.
* Failure - Document does not contain a META element with the required name: language or language does not have a 'content' value.
Okay, so pageone got put on the carpet twice in one topic. Can I blame it on age? ;)
Aw heck, I might as well go and resurrect the META Revisit-After since we're discussing Metadata. :)
|P3P Validator: Since we can't post links and it doesn't show up on the first page on Google. |
W3C P3P Validator
Does the W3C P3P Validator provide the data you get from that other validator you mention? The P3P was put to rest due to insufficient support.