As seen on the Yahoo! Local blog:

Starting today, we’re happy to announce Yahoo! Local fully supports the hCalendar, hCard, and hReview microformats on almost all business listings, search results, events, and reviews. There are a few reasons behind this change, which for now, will be transparent to almost everyone.

Kick ass.

As I've said before, Microformats are slowly but surely going to create a whole new web of data, ripe for mining, indexing, and exploring.

Posted by jzawodn at June 21, 2006 01:44 PM

Reader Comments
# grumpY! said:

i'm iffy on microformats. they seem like a niche in a niche - how many, even in the uber-early adopter crowd, are making use of these? i understand that its a critical-mass issue here, but should they reach critical mass, won't they just go down the same road as the meta tag? i see microformats becoming a spam vector should they take off, particularly if search engines trying tuning results based on microformats, then all bets are off, they will become just one more knob for SEO tuners to twist.

on June 22, 2006 10:31 AM
# Richard K Miller said:

grumpY!: Microformats are certainly niche right now, but I believe adoption will increase, first of course with the technorati and later with the mainstream. I can envision my browser eventually supporting microformats; then when I click on any event in Yahoo Local, it could be automatically inserted into my calendar. (This would benefit even the most novice of users.)

I don't think the potential for abuse is as high as it was with meta tags. Meta tags were intended to be read only by search engines and were hidden from humans, so they were gamed and abused. Microformats, on the other hand, are for both humans and machines simultaneously.

on June 22, 2006 11:43 AM
# grumpY! said:

Richard - i don't think the user-visible focus of microformats precludes their abuse. if that were the case, blog spam, email spam, keyword spam etc would not be viable either. i am still convinced that generated metadata for web pages is a dead-end with respect to the public web, we'll see this with microformats should crawlers start to key indexes on them. statistical methods than can decipher the noise in my opinion will prove to be more viable and scalable.

on June 22, 2006 12:00 PM
# Otis Gospodnetic said:

Is this being fed to Pingerati? I hope so!

on June 22, 2006 11:03 PM
# Ja said:

I'd hardly say that microformats are niche. They're designed to be very simplisitic and only contain fields that are commonly reused in what they are built for. Unfortunately, that leaves things very vague right now, there's only a few required fields to each item, and there's no standard for indexers to weed out the spam and fraud.

If you look at Technorati Microformat Review Search (as well as incoming pings at Pingerati), you'll notice many hreviews coming in bunches from various places... many of which have no original content at all but wrap things in hreview tags to get incoming traffic for their ads and affiliate links.

I found one of Amazon's top affiliates doing this sort of scamming on a massive scale by automatically wrapping hreview tags around the info provided by amazon in a tricky manner and attempting to use the aggregated user reviews as the review part of the hreview themselves... of course linking back to their product page where they had google ads as well as their affiliate product links to Amazon.

Jeremy, do you know if there are any plans in place to combat this type of activity?

I tend to agree with GrumpY! and I'm very much concerned that when you say "a whole new web of data, ripe for mining, indexing, and exploring," you're leaving out the part about spamming. :(

on June 23, 2006 04:14 PM
# Jessica said:

I agree that there are many spam and copyright issues that are going to arise wuickly here. Intellectual property copyfight - add a forum for this one.
(Anyone want to pay for my schools to become a copyfight attny? :)

With that said, it would be nice to have yahoo local reviews show up on citysearch. It would be nice if they were attributed to yahoo, even without a link. A searchbox or technorati or blog search would be cool as well.

It would be good for internet users to have the ability to see other useful content that is availalbe without having to troll though tons of useless crap.

Good sites that could enahnce thier user's expereince using a widget from yahoo, kind of makes it a bit more like google ;)

My concern as a cosumer is how long is this a great service before there is found a way to force ads in the content pulled from yahoo's api? Or anyone else's out there for that matter.

on June 25, 2006 12:06 AM
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