EditorialGuy - 3:02 pm on Dec 18, 2013 (gmt 0)
What we're talking about here--making it easier for search engines to understand what's on our pages--isn't all that different from what we were told to do back in the heyday of meta tags (sic) for keywords and descriptions. Even before Google came along, the standard advice was to provide easily-digestible and recognizable "spider food" for search crawlers.
Thinking of digestion leads to food for thought:
Will schema markup, HTML 5 markup, etc. be abused in the same way that keywords statements and alt text were back in the day?
Already, Google Authorship markup is being misused--sometimes by big companies that know better or should know better. (A few months ago, one of the big hotel sites was slapping authorship markup on its boilerplate booking pages until Google wised up and removed the author byline and photos from its SERPs.)
Example: What's to keep a thin affiliate from using Schema.org "article" markup on product pages if it thinks (rightly or wrongly) Google will look upon those pages more favorably? And even if such tricks aren't successful, mightn't they reduce the value of the markup for Google and other search engines?