CommonTag.org is a new semantic markup standard that makes it easy for content publishers to markup topics. The core idea is that content inside blog posts, news articles and web site will point to topics on encyclopedias like Wikipedia. By marking up the content via semantic tags publishers will benefit from a set of tools semantic tools ranging from search engines to widgets and browser plugins.
Here is how the format is described on the CommonTag web site:
Common Tag is an open tagging format developed to make content more connected, discoverable and engaging. Unlike free-text tags, Common Tags are references to unique, well-defined concepts, complete with metadata and their own URLs. With Common Tag, site owners can more easily create topic hubs, cross-promote their content, and enrich their pages with free data, images and widgets.
The effort is the brain-child of Andraz Tori, CTO of Zemanta, who pulled together a group of companies to collaborate on the spec. The companies that participated in the standard are Zemanta, Yahoo!, Freebase, Zigtag, Faviki, DERI and AdaptiveBlue.
CommonTag is exciting because it is simple and pragmatic. The specification facilitates entire ecosystem that benefits publishers and consumers.
Zemanta makes it easy to markup text with tags. Browsing tools like Glue can take advantage of topics to connect like minded people and offer shortcuts. Search engines like Yahoo! can be more precise and also display the results to the user in the enhanced format.
For more coverage and discussion on the launch, please see post on ReadWriteWeb.
p.s. stay tuned for additional related announcement from AdaptiveBlue today.