August 7, 2006
End-user vs. author tagging...
If those services use tags to add information related to the "aboutness" of the posts or blogs, then they should allow tagging by everyone - much as Flickr. And they should also allow users to suggest "related" tags.
When using a service like Technorati to alert people about stuff you wrote, the current setup works. Once you start using it to search for stuff, the limitations of having author-only tags and (I assume) system-only "related tags" become somewhat obvious.
January 18, 2006
Tag advertising - a new and viable tagging application?
Tagging is a very interesting emerging phenomenon, one that engenders many different applications. Some people people use tags to alert others that they have written something (Technorati tags are often being used that way), others use them like a folder organizing system to organize their saved bookmarks (i.e., Yahoo/del.icio.us), many use it to share and find web pages (i.e, del.icio.us, furl), photos (i.e., flickr), music (lastfm), videos (i.e., YouTube), or even dates (i.e., consumating), and some bloggers use it to annotate web pages for blog republishing purposes (i.e., del.icio.us). As a publisher, we are also trying to use it to help readers navigate through vast amounts of posts (i.e., Corante Marketing Hub).
Surely there are a ton of potentially useful and lucrative new usages of tagging which I am missing or which have not yet been tried. But then I came across 1000tags.com - which tries to use tagging for people to advertise their site. In their own words they are "a project that aims to put to the test in its simplest form the viability of tagging as a way to advertise, by presenting a tag cloud formed by tags added by people who try to promote a particular site or page." The way they do it is by " offering a web page where anyone can book a particular tag that will later be displayed in the main tag cloud at the 1000tags.com page, as well as allowing web site owners to add their tag - for free of course - by syndicating a small tag cloud at their pages."
Maybe I am slow - and that surely has happened before - but somehow I do not get this one. Why would I list a tag cloud on my site that has nothing to do with my site? It does not help readers, and I am not sure how it would help me as a blogger (other than perhaps increased "google juice" "if" the tag I choose becomes really popular and "if" many other bloggers list the 1000tags.com tag cloud on their site). Plus there is only one tag cloud - which right now includes poker, sex, dating, ???, BBW - not exactly things that are related to this blog - but which might arguably be of interest to some readers :)
At any rate - just for posting your opinion about them you get a free tag. So I will submit a request for my free tag, and see what happens.
October 5, 2005
Great post on how to use tagging in marketing communications
Recommendations go from the basic use of tags to pretty interesting ones involving remixing feeds, tagging your employee profiles and more.
August 22, 2005
Interesting new info on Technorati (at least for me)
It's a very good post - talking about recent system problems, but most importantly about the effectiveness in search of using technorati tags.
August 15, 2005
Tagging goes mainstream
It is a hoot to look at popular and unpopular tags...
July 21, 2005
Interesting discussion on tagging over at many-to-many
David Weinberger picks up on an older post from Tom Coates at Plasticbag on tagging - which leads to an interesting conversation over at many-to-many (disclosure - I accepted to join Corante as a partner - more on that later).
As a reminder - the original post posits that tags for blogs change over time for three reasons:
- the content changes
- people start using new terms (i.e., Ajax) to describe things
- it is a reflection of the fact that people tag differently - and that their tagging habits change over time (which I guess could also mean that your readership is shifting)
David thinks that most people do both. They file (or folder) when they do it for themselves and they tag when they want to contribute to a social tagstream.
I agree with the fact that most people have multiple tagging behaviors depending on what they're doing. But I also think that there are more than two tagging behaviors. Some do tag as an act of filing - that is very much how you use your categories on your blog or how some people use delicious or furl. Some do tag to let others know that they found something which might be of interest to them (as some do through delicious - knowing that others subscribe to a particular tag). Others use it to alert others that they wrote something that might interest others (much the way people use Technorati tags). And lastly you have those that use it to annotate something for re-publishing (much like people are using delicious tags to comment on something they see on the web - only to have it being re-published on their blog).
I guess you could lump the latter three together into one category - but for me they are different enough to threat as three distinct cases of tagging. The difference between the first and third behavior is also why I think it makes no sense for Technorati to pick up categories as tags.
July 11, 2005
Tagging for two at delicious
There is an interesting new little feature over at delicious - although I am not sure I like it yet. It provides users with the ability to tag for someone else (here).
[Technorati Tags: tagging]
June 21, 2005
More on folksonomies
By now you know that I am very interested in this topic and that I believe that this is one of the potential cornerstones of making KM finally work. That being said there are a few interesting developments that crossed my aggregator today.
First - here is a great article on folksonomies vs. taxonomies that will be presented later this week by Emanuele Quintarelli (via coporate blogging). The author does a good job of explaining where taxonomies fit vs. where folksonomies fit. He also takes you through the good and the bad of folskononies and specifically addresses the use of it within the enterprise - citing as one of the benefits the bridging of silos within companies where the same thing sometimes goes by a totally different name.
That reminded me of a large medical devices company I used to work with. The terminology used for product innovation between the different product groups was so dissimilar that a product manager from one department simply could not be transferred into another! Talk about barriers to cross-product innovation...
IBM is also rolling out enterpise usage of folksonomies - check out James Snell's post on that yesterday.
June 10, 2005
Started using tags differently again
As you may have noticed (I know I am not the first), I am having del.icio.us post the things that I save to del.icio.us on my blog every day. That caused me to use delicious tagging differently than I used to.
In the past I would tag stuff at delicious primarily for my own use. Now I use it to bring stuff that if of interest to me, and which I think will be interesting to you as well, to your attention. They are articles and web sites that fit with what I am writing about but for which I do not have enough original commentary (delicious lets me add one line of extended comment - which I have to start using better). In effect its a little like the Technorati tags except that if the links are of interest to you you can tag them yourself and put your own commentary on it.
June 6, 2005
more on tagging...
Tom Coates over at Plasticbag has another view of how different people use tags (here). Some use it as folders to organize their stuff while he uses it to annotate a post.
It's really interesting to see how different people tag differently.
May 31, 2005
You tag that... I'll tag this...no wait... let's tag it together
Another post about tagging. Pretty soon, I'll rename my blog "emergence tarketing". But what can you do? This stuff has big implications on the way we will share, publish and organize information and conversations - so I cannot stop thinking about it (I know...I need a life). The other reason I felt compelled to write about it again is that there have been quite a few good entries around tagging lately.
Over at Feedster, Scott Rafer brings us his latest views on tagging after a week of doing it (and comments on issues raised on Brian Del Vecchio's blog - here). He believes that anonymous tagging is going to be important and that the arguments for someone to own up to a tag in order to avoid tag spamming is overrated. His posts also touch on some of the copyright issues related to tagging (here).
Ericka Menchen (here) and Ryan King (here) debate the differences between reader-based tagging and author-based tagging. Ryan argues that reader-based tagging have a distinct advantage over author-based ones.
As I wrote before (here), people will use tagging for different purposes - some to alert others of new content (author-based tags, much like people technorati tags), some to share new found information with others or merely organizing their own information for later retrieval (reader-based tags). They both have a purpose in life and as such I am not sure whether it makes sense to add more value to one than the other. It would be nice to have a system that would cluster these tags as related (i.e. the author-based tags and the user-based tags on the same content). I am starting to be convinced that Folksonomies in general will only have real value with some form of clustering.
The issue of anonymity goes beyond accountability and tag-spamming (the act of associating inaccurate or bad tags with an entry anonymously) - it goes all the way to affecting the "credibility" of a tag. If you tag anonymously and tagging is now widely accepted (so we have "tag chaos" and we all become selective about which tags we subscribe to) - can you build credibility for that tag while being anonymous? I am not a big fan of anonymity in general, but I don't think this will work. It would be interesting to see how many people at del.icio.us subscribe to "people" tags (i.e., /plasticbag (Tom Coates), /linkorama (Ross Mayfield), etc.) rather than keyword tags (i.e., /marketing, /tools).
There will be more "tagging" related posts on this blog...not because of the hype surrounding it but because I truly believe that this is important to the way we market ourselves, build products, share stuff and get customer feedback. Just today, I had two lengthy conversations with ex friends and colleagues on tagging in the enterprise and in the new product development process.
May 27, 2005
[interesting] Graphing del.icio.us
It's cool, but I am not sure what to do with it yet (I admit that I can be slow)...
May 22, 2005
I just ran across this piece of code to let you add a "bookmark this" link at the bottom of your post. When a reader clicks that link it posts that posting to del.icio.us. You do need an account to post to de.icio.us.
With all this random tagging going on, I wonder if some kind of organizational hierarchy will emerge over time (much like Wikipedia's structure emerged). If it doesn't, then all this tagging will have little value. And if people try to impose it from the top down (through some sort of standard-setting activity), I fear we will run into the same issues that KM ran into in the corporate world - people just don't use it.
April 10, 2005
Interesting - Technorati announces related tags
April 4, 2005
Technology enablement - tagging services
So I may be the last one on the blo(g)ck to talk about this. After all, Business Week this week wrote (Picking Up Where Search Leaves Off - requires subscription) about del.icio.us and other tagging services.
Awhile back I started using two social tagging services - del.icio.us and furl. For those of you who are unfamiliar with these services, check out John Udell's screencast on del.icio.us over at Infoworld.
The service is fairly straightforward...whenever you see something you want to save, you click "post to del.icio.us" or "Furl It!" in your browser's links section and up comes a menu that enables you to save the link, add additional comments to it and tag it with your own tags. Giving users the ability to develop a list of tagged links is very compelling all by itself...
But that is not where it stops. You can also see who else tagged the same thing as you did, and see what tags they used (and based on others' tags you may revisit your own tags.) You can also subscribe to a tag's RSS feed (so every time someone tags something with a tag you subscribe to, you get it in your reader) or to a person's RSS feed (so every time that person tags something, you get it as well).
I am finally getting to the point I wanted to make - which is that I am convinced that these simple services can be very powerful in your daily fact gathering, knowledge sharing and collaboration. You could subscribe to tags that represent your competitors - even small companies return tens or hundreds of listings! You could also ask your team to tag things with pre-determined tags whenever they see something of interest and then have everyone on the team subscribe to that tag's rss feed. You could even extend that to include customers - have them tag stuff with your company or product name when they run into something that they find relevant to you.
The other neat thing is that unlike with so many other "enterprise" applications, I do not think that you will have much of a barrier to adoption. The beauty of those solutions is that they pack enough benefits to the individual users. So they don't have to wait until the broader community uses it to derive benefits - a common barrier to adoption in group applications.
[Categories: tagging del.icio.us furl]