Markup for News

This page provides background information on the use of schema.org for marking up News content and related matters.

See also: acknowledgements

Status

The purpose for creating this supporting documentation was to address the need for an overview of the various terms across schema.org, including proposed new terms that are "pending" wider review and implementation feedback.

Describing News content with Schema.org

As of early 2017, the central term within schema.org for News content is NewsArticle. This document provides more context on that definition and introduces some additional terms that can help clarify different kinds of News and News-related content. It also indicates some other areas of schema.org terminology that are related in various ways to News.

Note: some of the terms listed here are under-development i.e. have a 'pending' status within schema.org. Specifically, NewsMediaOrganization, ReportageNewsArticle, AnalysisNewsArticle, OpinionNewsArticle, ReviewNewsArticle, BackgroundNewsArticle, AdvertiserContentArticle, SatiricalArticle, as well as the proposed subproperties of publishingPrinciples.

What is a "NewsArticle"?

Schema.org defines NewsArticle as "A NewsArticle is an article whose content reports news, or provides background context and supporting materials for understanding the news."

An Article can be considered a NewsArticle even if contains inaccuracies, mixes opinion with factual claims, or diverges in other ways from ideal journalistic best practice. ReportageNewsArticle represents a more restricted sense of "news" corresponding to journalistic best practices. NewsArticles can include various kinds of best practice declaration that explicitly indicate the standards, policies and transparency mechanisms that a news source has adopted, see publishingPrinciples and its subproperties.

Related Vocabulary: scholarly and scientific coverage of, and background to, the news can also be described using ScholarlyArticle or Book. Educational materials that also support background understanding of the news can be described using schema.org's education-oriented markup, see AlignmentObject, learningResourceType, typicalAgeRange, typicalAgeRange, educationalRole and nearby. Other forms of learning are supported by Course and CourseInstance markup, alongside the full range of CreativeWorks e.g. VideoObject, BlogPosting etc. The BackgroundArticle type emphasises background knowledge in a news-oriented setting, e.g. an in-depth article on topics such as Climate Change or the European Union.

Schema.org provides ClaimReview to identify fact-checking summaries, e.g. of a NewsArticle or of specific claims. It also supports Non-textual content via TV and Radio markup; e.g. TVEpisode, TVSeries, as well as through MediaObject. News-publishing organizations also often publish Reviews, most typically CriticReviews; these are always considered CreativeWorks and can often also be described as Articles or NewsArticles (i.e. markup can include multiple types). The ReviewNewsArticle type directly represents the common case of news articles that are also critic reviews.

Real-time coverage of breaking news can be described using LiveBlogPosting, or for a BroadcastEvent, use of the isLiveBroadcast property. The contentReferenceTime property has also been proposed (see issue #1050) as a way to track the specific point in time within an Event that an Article describes, e.g. for sports coverage or breaking news.

The general case of indicating different kinds of news content for TV/Radio and media is not yet fully addressed. An interim solution is to use NewsArticle subtypes as additional types alongside types such as RadioClip that represent news items, on the basis that they have textual content even when that content is not explicitly manifested in the text of an article/document.

Finally, while a few dedicated types are included within schema.org to describe specific kinds of news and news-related articles, note that the genre property can also be combined with the much longer list of IPTC news codes URLs. This pattern can also be used with other kinds of CreativeWork, including those around TV/Radio, broadcast and media formats mentioned above.

In addition to describing the output of the news creation process, Schema.org also has some facilities (both established and proposed/pending) for talking about the news creation process. These are expressed as properties. The most basic is the publishingPrinciples property, which was created through Schema.org's early collaboration with IPTC rNews initiative. In addition there are several proposed/pending "best practice"-oriented properties: actionableFeedbackPolicy, correctionsPolicy, diversityPolicy, ethicsPolicy, masthead, missionCoveragePrioritiesPolicy, sourcingAndInterviewsPolicy, verificationFactCheckingPolicy, (apart from ethicsPolicy and diversityPolicy, these are all sub-properties of publishingPrinciples).

Acknowledgments

Schema.org's original vocabulary for News was created in collaboration with the IPTC rNews initiative. Many of the proposed and pending improvements described here are based on the work of The Trust Project. Specifically the clarifications and new types around NewsArticle were inspired by and largely based on the "type of work" indicators identified there, while the addition of publishing principles sub-properties was motivated by the Trust Project's analysis of "best practices" indicators.