date in search results

Tim Hill tim at
Fri Feb 16 16:09:33 GMT 2018

In article <8d6444cb56.jim at>, Jim Nagel
<netsurf at> wrote:
> What causes Google (or other searchers) to display (or not display) a
> DATE in search results?

> For instance, search for "Terran" -- some of the
> items listed show a date and some don't.

Those with a date seem to have it in the page following the word
"updated" as many news stories do elsewhere. I can't say that would be of
much use to many of my pages, but gives me an idea.

> If I ran the world, *every* item would show a date.  So often one
> wants current information, not waste time on stuff from 2001.  But
> sometimes historical stuff is indeed what is sought.

A pity there is no standard for a document's date or last revision date,
isn't it?

We should be using something like a meta tag with name 'published' or
'revised'; perhaps 'updated'. But whatever you use, it needs to appear in
the body of a page for a search engine to take notice.

Unfortunately, the way these dates are grabbed off a page are not
particularly useful in some circumstances.

> So state date.  I've long wondered what the mechanism is.

A search result dates this page as 25th July 1982, showing that the date
is grabbed off the page without intelligence: it demonstrates only that
such dates are not particularly useful.

There are different publication and build dates in the meta tags which
tells me I need to look into this more, thanks for bringing it up.

I'm going to add "updated: [date]" to my RISC OS page(s) which are
currently undergoing a re-vamp.....Done. (~24 pages changed with one edit
to read and 'print' the last modification date of the relevant part of
the page. Got to love PHP.)


Tim Hill : : : :

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