Always Get Better

Posts Tagged ‘attribution’

Humans.txt – the Anti-Robots.txt

Saturday, January 14th, 2012
Mimbo - A Friendly Robot
Creative Commons License photo credit: langfordw

If you don’t want a search engine to read some or all of the files on your site, you can create a robots.txt file. (Looking through the blog archive, I realize I’ve never gone through the construction and contents of that important file, so this is a promise to one day return and fix that!)

When you want the opposite – accessible pages and author credit, create a humans.txt file. Although not an “official” standard, it is a fun way to acknowledge the (sometimes many) hardworking individuals behind the creation of a web site.

An example is:

/* TEAM */
Leader: Mike Wilson
Site: http://www.alwaysgetbetter.com
Twitter: HawkWilson
Location: Ottawa, ON

/* THANKS */
Seth Godin: http://www.sethgodin.com
Steve Pavlina: http://www.stevepavlina.com
Phil Haack: http://haacked.com

/* SITE */
Last Update: Jan 14, 2012
Standards: HTML5, CSS3
Software: WordPress

In most cases, you would want to include at least a TEAM and SITE section. Clearly the exact fields are left to your imagination, but it’s a very simple way to acknowledge the people who helps (directly or in spirit) a site to get to fruition.

For more information about humans.txt, check out the initiative’s home page at http://humanstxt.org/.