How to use rel=publisher and rel=author at the same time for a webpage


If you try to use both rel=author and rel=publisher markups at the same time in a webpage, you will get the error: Error: Both rel=publisher and rel=author are present on the page, we only verify rel=author link for this case. Learn more about this error.

Today was a busy day! Google announced Google+ Pages for business and I created several Google+ Pages for my websites. The next step was to link between Google+ Pages and the websites. It wasn't very hard to create the Google+ Pages and create the connection between Google+ Pages and the websites. But unfortunately, I was stuck at the last step!

I learnt that Google does not allow using the rel=publisher and rel=author markups at the same time. This is very disappointing. According to Google, they are duplicate markups, but are they really duplicate?

This is the error message I get when I try to validate the markups using the Rich Snippet Testing tool:

Error: Both rel=publisher and rel=author are present on the page, we only verify rel=author link for this case

[Well, actually, the error says the tool only verifies one markup, but Google may respect both the tags. I am yet to find out. There is no formal documentation from Google on this.]

Here is the screenshot of the error (warning?) displayed by the Rich Snippet Testing tool when I tried to validate the rel="publisher" link and the association between my website and Google+ page.



Ideally, Google should allow both rel=author and rel=publisher at the same time since both represent different entities. The author is the author of the content in the page and the publisher is the company/business who run the website.

The warning shown by the Rich Snippet Testing tool could be just because of its inability to use both markups at the same. I will find out soon and share it here.

Update on 9 Nov 2011: I found several other people have raised the same concern in Google forums and there is no official response from Google yet. So far it looks it is a glitch in the rich snippet test tool and there is nothing wrong in using rel=author and rel=publisher at the same time.

Check back soon to find the conclusive answer to this problem.

Update on 17 Nov 2011: I just found out what happens if you use both rel=publisher and rel=author at the same time. The rel=publisher tag takes precedence when Google decide which connection to show in the search results.

Update on 27 Nov 2011: Google confirmed in the Webmaster forum that both rel=publisher and rel=author markups can be used at the same time and the warning from Rich Snippet Testing tool is a bug.


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