SchemaDotOrgProcess

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This Wiki page is part of the WebSchemas group, and documents the practical workflow of Schema.org as it relates to this W3C forum. Note that other groups can also adopt Web Schemas as a collaboration and feedback forum; however this page only attempt to describe the Schema.org efforts within the group.

A separate page describes in more detail the collaborations and discussions that led to this group. This Wiki page is for more practical details, and is publicly editable.


Overview

Schema.org has adopted the W3C Web Schemas group as its public feedback forum, via its public-vocabs list and this Wiki. What does this mean in practice?

  • the Schema.org team now use a section of the Web Schemas Issue tracker to manage issues and feedback.
  • public commentary and proposals regarding Schema.org are directed to the public-vocabs list.
  • the WebSchemas Wiki is the primary documentation hub for proposals about extensions, editions and changes to Schema.org (while schema.org remains the home of the Schema.org schemas).

How to Contribute

  • As the microformats community have noted, it is good to document the results of discussions in Wiki form; email traffic should be considered a means to an end, rather than an end in itself.
  • The W3C list is open to the public. See the WebSchemas homepage for information on how to join.
  • To make more advanced use of tools from W3C (including this Wiki), you will need a W3C account; again these are available to the public.
  • Members of the Schema.org team monitor and participate in the public-vocabs@w3.org discussions, and do their best to be responsive to feedback and discussion.
  • the group chair(s) will try to record substantive points in the issue tracker and/or the Wiki. In general, rough proposals and brainstorming are articulated in the Wiki, while more specific open issues and any arising action items are tracked in the issue tracker.

It should be emphasized that this is not a traditional W3C standardization activity; rather, it is an experiment in making a forum in which independent 'structured data on the Web' projects and their participants can collaborate, discuss, and learn from one another.

Schema.org's sponsoring organizations ultimately reserve editorial control over their schemas. Participants making substantive contributions (e.g. when incorporating a large independently designed schema, such as the rNews/IPTC collaboration) should expect to make direct arrangements with the Schema.org sponsors. Other participants should be aware of the Schema.org terms of service document. This also means that sometimes Schema.org will move ahead quickly, and with less open discussion than would be expected from a standards-centric effort. There are natural tradeoffs here, and the operation of Schema.org will evolve in response to the usefulness of this group.

The general mode of collaboration is around questions, bugs and improvements:

  • if you have a question that you can't find an answer to on schema.org, please ask!
  • if you find some problem or error in Schema.org, please let us know via public-vocabs, giving as much concrete detail as possible.
  • if you have ideas for improvements, additions, extensions, or mappings/allignments with other work, please make concrete suggestions.

In any of these situations, please don't assume that readers of your text (whether in Wiki or email) have read everything relevant in the archives or the Wiki; so please take the time to include links to background materials and previous discussions. Specific test cases are particularly useful in making your point clear.

Finally, please when writing to the public-vocabs@w3.org list about Schema.org topics, do mention 'Schema.org' in your message. Other vocabularies and issues are also in scope, and it is useful to keep the distinction between Schema.org and this forum clear.

Examples and Templates

We don't currently have formal templates for Schema.org extension proposals. Instead please use a simple textual format.

For an example, see the announcement and associated Wiki entry for job postings. This shows a few things: that the proposal text can be simple structured email, ... and that summarising email threads into the Wiki is a useful part of the proposal process. In the future we may define more structured templates, especially for larger proposals.