The White House wants us to use Schema for COVID-19 announcements

The White House and other federal agencies are coordinating with to promote visibility for coronavirus-related information on search engines, the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy announced Wednesday.

The presidential department is directing federal chief information officers and encouraging the private sector, state and local governments and the academic community to incorporate the structured data tags “SpecialAnnouncement” and “eventAttendanceMode” introduced last month.

Why we care

To increase implementation, the White House has enlisted the Networking and Information Technology Research and Development program to circulate COVID-19 structured data instructions to federal and non-governmental digital teams.

This could increase awareness about Schema generally, both within governmental organizations and in the private sector. Heightened awareness could, in turn, lead to broader adoption of other structured data types by developers across industries.

More on the news

  • “An effort is also underway to develop additional tags for scientific and other auxiliary information related to COVID-19, led by National Science Foundation-funded Open Knowledge Network projects, the Department of Energy, and the National Institutes of Health,” the announcement reads.
  • Bing began supporting the new SpecialAnnouncement data type on March 23.
  • Google announced that it will support the SpecialAnnouncement data type and published guidelines for applying it to coronavirus-related announcements on March 31.
  • Site owners can also add SpecialAnnouncement structured data to their pages by submitting a COVID-19 announcement in Google Search Console.

More about marketing in the time of the coronavirus

  • The White House wants us to use Schema or COVID-19 announcements
  • A simple script to compare search behavior before – and during – COVID-19
  • 16-straight days of rankings volatility: SEOs dig into the COVID-19 effects on search
  • Content and coronavirus: How you can differentiate from the masses

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