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Use Cases

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Use Cases should be shaped as user stories and linked to this page by creating a link and then filling out the resulting wiki page.

The stories should describe a user's intent and their activities towards some purpose in the use of the annotation system. The recommended format is a typical User Story format answering "who", "what", and "why":

"As a <role>, I want <goal/desire> so that <benefit>"

Please keep in mind that the user may be a software agent, such as describing the federation of annotation systems.

It would be helpful and appreciated if the stories were tagged with one or more of the following categories:

  • Model: The user story has a direct impact on the underlying model for describing an annotation in a structured format.
  • Protocol: The user story has a direct impact on the interaction between different systems over the network, such as between client and server, or server and server.
  • Interface: The user story has a direct impact on how a client system would interact with a host web browser environment, such as the rendering or anchoring of annotations.


We are working to aggregate and catalog annotation related uses from around the Web. Your contributions are welcome!

To help with user stories, here's a set of modern gender-neutral names.

Use Cases by the Web Annotation Working Group

Use Case model protocol interface best practice
Cross-formats Annotations
Cover Art
Juxtaposition of targets
Resource Annotation Discovery
Annotations of annotations as a discourse
Format of Retrieved Annotation
Cross-platform annotation of cultural assets
Filtering of annotations
Reviews as Annotation
Annotating CSV Data
Social Semantic Web
Graffiti (Web Clipper)

Use Cases published by the Digital Publishing Interest Group.

Annotations Targeting the Full Publication
Use Case model protocol interface best practice
Comment on Publication Title
Tagging a Publication
Structured Review of a Publication
Comment Maintained Separately from Annotation Document
Annotation Metadata
Annotation has Multiple, Independent Comments and/or Tags
Annotations Targeting Specific Segments of Publications
Use Case model protocol interface best practice
Bookmarking Current Reading Position
Highlighting a Span of Text
Commenting on a Span of Text
Annotating Embedded Resources
Annotating Parts of Embedded Resources
Annotating Alt Text of Embedded Resources
Annotation Comparing Segments within a Publication
Annotation Comparing Segments between Publications
Advanced Annotation Use Cases
Use Case model protocol interface best practice
Cross Format Annotations
Cross Version Annotations
Maintaining Annotation Style
Maintaining Annotation Layout
Recording State of Changing, Online Resources
Recording State of User Manipulated Resources
Annotation has a Choice of Multiple, Dependent Bodies or Targets
Annotation has Multiple, Dynamically Defined Targets
Determination of Annotation Validity after Target is Modified
Determination of Annotation Validity for Embedded Resources
Annotation Publication
Use Case model protocol interface best practice
Sets of Annotations for a Publication
Persistence of Annotations
User or System Initiated Transfers between Systems
Annotation (or Part) is not Published Openly
Publication (or Part) is not Published Openly
Accessibility and Internationalization
Use Case model protocol interface best practice
Using Annotation for Contributing Accessibility Information
Location of Annotations
Using Annotation for Contributing Internationalization Information
Viewing Aggregated Annotations