Blogging Practises

Guidelines I follow when publishing on the web

EDIT: Added editing policies (heh. meta.)


In content that is designed to have a long lifespan, avoid temporal references such as “A few days ago” or “last year” as they will degrade and confuse


Mark up all edits with ins and del tags, applying the datetime="" attr where useful, especially to dels (they usually have an accompanying ins, so no need for a datetime on that)

Summarise last edit at the top of the article, including the datetime attr

  • TODO: How best to present edit history?
  • Hard coded at bottom of article?
  • As of I am storing update data in ins and del elements within the article body, and update metadata as JSON in a separate field
  • I am displaying the edits in reverse-chronological order at the bottom of the article, with a unicode character to indicate the nature of the edit, Author h-card, relative time and edit summary
  • Edit summaries inspired by Smallest Federated Wiki

Linking to others

Always try to link by full name to a personal homepage instead of a twitter account/etc. Examples:

  • In March 2012, [Full Name](Personal Domain) wrote about [Some Topic](Blog URI)`etc…
  • When they said [Something about some topic](Tweet URI), I think [Full Name](personal domain) was mistaken etc…

Replying to a post:

  • Link both to the post and to the authors personal homepage, as the post may be elsewhere on the web but the author should still be credited properly
  • If the author has written more than one post that is being replied to, list all the relevant ones, preferably with comments.
  • Start the reply post with the reply link and an author domain link in a natural language intro paragraph.

Mentioning commercial services:

  • Here it’s a big more vauge
  • I tend to link if I want people to go and look at the site, and leave it plaintext if I don’t.
  • So there’s implied positivity/negativity here.


Syndicate to the maximum number of relevant networks. Adjust the content to suit the network

  • Twitter
    • Obviously content length restriction applies
    • For blog posts, include the tweetable tagline. This should be independent enough for it to make sense if retreated
    • For replies/related posts, @reply the original poster as per usual
  • Facebook
    • Text can and often should be a bit longer than a tweet
    • Don’t include @twitternames
    • Use the FB API to take control of link, image, description and the like