[whatwg] Historic dates in HTML5

Henri Sivonen hsivonen at iki.fi
Thu Mar 5 04:00:35 PST 2009

On Mar 5, 2009, at 13:33, jim at eatyourgreens.org.uk wrote:

> Is <time> then like <address> in HTML 4? ie. intended for certain  
> dates only, just as <address> may not be used to mark up all  
> addresses?

Yes, in the sense that <time> is designed for contemporary secular  
civilian use cases. (If someone uses the (Common-Era) proleptic  
Gregorian calendar calendar for other use cases, (s)he gets a  
fortuitous free ride.)

> In that case, the spec should be clear on correct and incorrect  
> usage, with examples of both to guide authors.

Indeed: http://www.w3.org/Bugs/Public/show_bug.cgi?id=6536

> Bruce Lawson uses <time> to mark up the dates of blog posts in the  
> HTML5 version of his wordpress templates. Is this incorrect usage of  
> HTML5?

It's not incorrect, as currently drafted, but it's most likely not  

> If not, how should HTML5 blog templates work when the blog is dated  
> from 1665 (http://pepysdiary.com) or 1894 (http://www.cosmicdiary1894.blogspot.com/)?

If a blogger backdates posts in a way that doesn't fit the (Common- 
Era) proleptic Gregorian calendar, (s)he shouldn't use <time>. Note  
that currently http://www.cosmicdiary1894.blogspot.com/ shows the real  
posting date in Blogger's date field and the backdated date as text in  
a heading and neither has any kind of microformat markup.

Henri Sivonen
hsivonen at iki.fi

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