Sunday, April 22, 2007

What Why & How to Tag

Tagging 101: How To Get Started

To understand what tagging is you need to understand
what is Folksonomy - a core Web 2.0 principle. I believe failing to understand the power of this new phenomena, is one of the leading causes for new users in failing to adopt many of the new Web 2.0 services.


Four reasons why you need to start tagging:

1. Tagging is easier than categorizing. Rashmi Sinha's post "A Cognitive Analysis of Tagging provides two brilliant diagrams that represent the frustration behind the paralysis by analysis effect when we tried to find the "right" or "best" category to file. Then she illustrates the tagging process which shows you how it cuts off the last step making it easier and more enjoyable to label.

2. Tagging makes it easier to remember and find. Since you can apply multiple tags, you can sort, search, and file under multiple contexts.

3. Folksonomy allows you to tap into the wisdom of the crowds and jump on the long tail of the collective intelligence and emerging trends. Exploring and browsing through tag clouds allows you to discover trends and interests that you may otherwise never have been able to think of to type in google or stumble on.

4. Folksonomy is social and leads to sharing. You have the ability to find like-minded individuals and tap their brains, tastes, interests, and favorite sites.


Although their is no set standard and controlled vocabulary here are some general guidelines to get you tag clouds started on the right foot.

1) Use keywords.

2) Use multiple tags.

3) If you are going to use multiple words with in one tag use an underscore. Example "professional_development"

4) Be conscious of nouns and verbs when tagging. If I find links that are resources about how to blog, I will tag it them under "blogging." If I find some interesting blogs I tag them with "blogs."

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