[whatwg] Inferring rel="feed" from the media type

Mark Baker distobj at acm.org
Wed Nov 29 09:53:01 PST 2006


HTML 5 says;

"If the alternate keyword is used with the type attribute set to the
value application/rss+xml or the value application/atom+xml, then the
user agent must treat the link as it would if it had the feed keyword
specified as well."
  -- http://www.whatwg.org/specs/web-apps/current-work/#link-type

I believe this in error.  Atom, at least (I expect this also holds for
RSS), is useful for representing more things than just feeds.  It's
really a generic packaging mechanism.  For example, one might do the
equivalent of MHTML[1] using Atom, and link such a document to an HTML
page with rel="alternate".  But it isn't a feed, and it isn't
something you'd want syndication tools to auto-discover as a feed,
since that will just confuse users.

In addition, the media type on link is non-authoritative, meaning that
feed-semantics would be inferred before it was even ascertained that
the would-be representation was actually an Atom or RSS document.


 [1] http://www.ietf.org/rfc/rfc2557.txt


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