New link relations in HTML5

Several new rel attributes for the <a> and <link> elements have been proposed for HTML5. Existing attributes from HTML4 may be redefined somewhat. They include:

  • <rel='alternate'>
    • may be used with link, a, and area elements
    • meaning depends on the values of the other attributes such as 'stylesheet' or 'type'
  • <rel='icon'>
    • may be used with link elements
    • specified resource is an icon representing the page or site
  • <rel='nofollow'>
    • may be used with a and area elements
    • the link is not endorsed by the original author or publisher of the page
  • <rel='prefetch'>
    • may be used with link elements
    • preemptively fetches and caches the specified resource
  • <rel='archives'>
    • may be used with link, a, and area elements
    • indicates that the referenced document describes a collection of records, documents, or other materials of historical interest.
  • <rel='external'>
    • may be used with a and area elements
    • indicates that the link is leading to a document that is not part of the current site
  • <rel='license'>
    • may be used with link, a, and area elements
    • the referenced document provides the copyright license terms
  • <rel='noreferrer'>
    • may be used with link, a, and area elements
    • user agent must not include a Referrer HTTP header  in the request
  • <rel='pingback'>
    • may be used with link elements
    • usage is still being defined, but it creates a hyperlink
  • <rel='sidebar'>
    • may be used with link, a, and area elements
    • the referenced document, if retrieved, is intended to be shown in a secondary browsing context (if possible). It isn’t clear if this means a new tab, a new window, or an iFrame.
  • <rel='tag'>
    • may be used with link, a, and area elements
    • the tag that the referenced document represents applies to the current document

The best I can tell from looking at the current specs, these relative types of links are current in the HTML5 proposal. I hope I haven’t missed any.

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