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If I have a duplicate content because my article is syndicated to a third party site. which URLs should I use in json-ld Article schema? To be precise, let's say I want to publish an article from my blog.example.xyz on another site e.g. popular.example.com. When I publish the article on popular.example.com I go and update canonical URL on my blog.example.xyz, and og:url property (both should be same as implied here):

<!-- this is on blog.example.xyz -->
<link rel="canonical" href="https://popular.example.com/my-duplicate-article/">
<meta property="og:url" content="https://popular.example.com/my-duplicate-article/" />

I also use http://schema.org/Article to describe the Article entity, however, usually all URLs within it point to my own blog.example.xyz

<!-- this is on blog.example.xyz -->
<script type="application/ld+json">
  {
    "@context": "http://schema.org",
    "@type": "Article",
    "author": {
      "name" : "Gitnik"
    },
    "headline": "My Duplicate Article",
    "description" : "Uhm, how do I deal with Article entity in case of duplicate content?",
    "inLanguage" : "en",
    "wordCount":  600 ,
    "datePublished" : "2020-05-18T21:00:00",
    "dateModified" : "2020-05-18T21:00:00",
    "image" : "http:\/\/blog.example.xyz\/img\/logo.png",
    "mainEntityOfPage" : "http:\/\/blog.example.xyz\/2020\/05\/my-duplicate-article\/",
    "publisher" : {
      "@type": "Organization",
      "name" : "http:\/\/blog.example.xyz\/",
      "logo" : {
          "@type" : "ImageObject",
          "url" : "http:\/\/blog.example.xyz\/img\/logo.png",
          "height" :  60 ,
          "width" :  60
      }
    }
  }
  </script>

but Google states that mainEntityOfPage should be same as canonical URL. Now, it's easy to update mainEntityOfPage to the new url. But what about image URL and organization URL? Can image URL still my domain, or does it need to change to the domain of the canonical URL? And should I change Organization entity to the popular.example.com and change the URL there also? How would it affect SEO if I left them unchanged? How would it affect SEO if I left mainEntityOfPage unchanged?

  • Shouldn't your domain be the canonical? If you have the original shouldn't the popular site point the canonical at your site? By changing the canonical to their site you are giving them all the SEO value from this article. – Stephen Ostermiller May 24 at 11:43
  • @StephenOstermiller On some sites I cannot change canonical url, but I don't want to be penalized for duplicate content. So it's better to point my canoniacal url to third-party site. – Gitnik May 24 at 12:24
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Which URL to use regarding canonicalization

Choose one canonical URL for your content, and use it in every canonical attribute, i.e. in:

  • <link rel="canonical" ... (it is the most important),
  • <meta property="og:url" ... and
  • the structured-data property Article.mainEntityOfPage

and in every page that has the same content (the original page and the pages with the duplicate content).

About JSON-LD Article.image

According to the Google Developers Reference, you must specify an Article.image in your JSON-LD, and the URL specified in Article.image must be actually used (or "marked-up") in the HTML code of the current article (with <img src= ...). This reference further states that this URL "must be crawlable and indexable". In my understanding, it can be from a third-party domain.

About JSON-LD Article.publisher.name and Article.publisher.logo.url

I would not pay too much attention on these as it should not significantly influence the ranking. I do not see any major SEO or technical issue if you use an image from the non-canonical domain. For the sake of consistency, I would stick to the image and URL of the original publisher.

“ How would it affect SEO if I left mainEntityOfPage unchanged? ”

It do not think that it would be a big problem, as the main attribute for managing duplicate content in SEO is <link rel="canonical" ....

| improve this answer | |
  • Thank you! Though it's a bit confusing regarding the image url. In the documentation page I provided, by Google, it states that mainEntityOfPage is canonical url, and that image is Only a marked-up image that directly belongs to the article should be specified which implies that is should belong to the same domain. – Gitnik May 24 at 7:33
  • @Gitnik, Sorry, I missed your question subpart about Article.image. I understand your citation from Google Developers Reference like this: you must specify, in your JSON-LD, an image that is actually used (or "marked-up") in the HTML code of the current article (with <img src= ...). This reference further states that Article.image must be "crawlable and indexable"; in my understanding, it might be hosted on a third-party domain. I will update my answer accordingly. – Éric May 24 at 10:52
  • Aha, so in case I don't actually have an image on my article (when posted on third-party site) Article.image I can leave out Article.image from Article? Also, since the Article is now on third-party site, should that be reflected too in Article.publisher? – Gitnik May 24 at 11:20
  • @Gitnik, No, an Article.image is required in the JSON-LD of the current page, and Article.image.url must be used in this current page with <img src= .... Regarding Article.publisher, the short answer is no (please read my answer about that point). – Éric May 24 at 11:46
  • Cool. Thanks. So the bottom line is to change canonical urls wherever I need to, but I can just leave other urls (image and publisher) as is. Thanks :) – Gitnik May 24 at 12:28

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