Channel Bots

Channel employs several bots to augment the product with extra information from around the web. We are here to help whether you found us in your access logs and you have questions or are just curious.

Crawler Bot

This bot responds to links that Channel users post into their chat rooms. It fetches as little of the page as it can (using HTTP Range headers) to extract meta tags about the content. Specifically, we are looking for Open Graph tags. If a page's tags refer to an image, video, or audio file, we will fetch that file as well to check validity and extract other metadata.

Identifying the Crawler

Mozilla/5.0 (compatible; ChannelBot/v1.0; +http://channel.io/bot)

You can target one of these user agents to serve the crawler a nonpublic version of your page that has only metadata and no actual content. This helps optimize performance and is useful for keeping paywalled content secure.

An example embed using Open Graph tags:

Giving the Crawler Access

There is a way to give the crawler access:

  • Whitelist the user agent strings listed above, which requires no upkeep