person sitting on the chair near the plastic containers with lables

What are post kinds?

I needed a way to have a decent taxonomy for my posts on this incarnation of the blog, especially given its social features. A few places I hang out in online were using a dead-simple method for categorizing their posts and making it easy to find the stuff they saved later on, called Post Kinds.

Post kinds are a way of categorizing different types of posts on the web, based on the IndieWeb standards1. Hang on, let me explain that too– The IndieWeb is a movement that advocates for people to own their own data and identity online, rather than relying on third-party platforms2Post kinds can help users express themselves in various ways, such as replying, liking, bookmarking, reading, listening, watching, and more3. Post kinds also enable richer interactions between websites, by using webmentions and microformats to send and receive notifications and display contextual information4.

The tool I’m using to make this easier is David Shanske’s Post Kinds Plugin for WordPress5. This plugin adds a taxonomy called Kind to the WordPress editor and allows users to fill in the blanks for the relevant properties of each kind of post. It also automatically parses URLs to display rich context and integrates with the Webmention Plugin to send and receive webmentions5.

Post kinds are not the same as post formats, which are a WordPress feature that allows users to choose a format for their posts, such as standard, aside, image, video, etc. Post formats are more limited and less semantic than post kinds, and do not support the IndieWeb standards3.

While not implemented on my site, post kinds can be determined by an algorithm called Post Type Discovery, which looks at the content properties and values of a post, rather than an explicit post type property. This way, the post kind can be inferred from the combination of text, media, and other elements in the post, without requiring the user to specify what kind of post they are creating4.

Post kinds are a powerful and flexible way of creating and interacting with content on the web, following the IndieWeb principles of owning your data, expressing yourself, and connecting with others, which is definitely what I’m trying to achieve with this webiste.

Let’s take a look at the different kinds of post kinds that I’m actively using:

📰Article – traditional long form content: a post with an explicit title and body
🗒Note – a short quick thought, usually under 200 words and without a title
↩Reply – a reply to content typically on another site
♻Repost – a complete reposting of content from another site
♥Like – a way to pay compliments to the original post/poster of external content
⭐Favorite – special to the author
🔖Bookmark – storing a link/bookmark for personal use or sharing with others
🖼Photo – a post with an embedded image/photo as its primary focus
🎞Video – a post with an embedded video as its primary focus
🔊Audio – a post with an embedded audio file as its primary focus
🗓RSVP – a specific type of reply regarding attendance of an event
🎧Listen – listening to audio; sometimes called a scrobble
📺Watch – watching a movie, television show, online video, play or other visual-based event
📍Checkin – identifying you are at a particular geographic location
🎮Play – playing a game
🍖Eat – what you are eating, perhaps for a food diary
☕Drink – what you are drinking, perhaps for a food dairy
🎵Jam – a particularly personally meaningful song (a listen with added emphasis)
📚Read – reading a book, magazine, newspaper, other physical document, or online post
🗨Quote – quoted content
⚠Issue – Issue is a special kind of article post that is a reply to typically some source code, though potentially anything at a source control repository.
🤔Review – A review is a post evaluating a product or service, usually involving a written description, sometimes with summary numerical evaluations, also known as just a rating.
🛠Craft – Activities like knitting, crocheting, cross stitch, wood working, restoration, 3d printing…the activity of building something.

Have a look-see at the different posts above (some aren’t populated yet) and you’ll get a sense for what I’m trying to do here.

Also give me some advice– how do you/would you do it?  Use the syndication links (next to the 📡🔀 icon) and let me know.

  • 1: Post Kinds Plugin - IndieWeb
  • 2: Post Kinds – WordPress plugin |
  • 3: post-type-discovery - IndieWeb
  • 4: Getting Started on WordPress - IndieWeb
  • 5: dshanske/indieweb-post-kinds - GitHub