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Tidying Up Tags – A Technical Review

I’ve written about some of the problems I’ve found with tagging, but here is a scientifically written paper on the problems, challenges, and success of tags by D-Lib Magazine called “Folksonomies Tidying up Tags?”

We agree with the premise that tags are no replacement for formal systems, but we see this as being the core quality that makes folksonomy tagging so useful. We begin by looking at the issue of “sloppy tags”, a problem to which critics of folksonomies are keen to allude, and ask if there are ways the folksonomy community could offset such problems and create systems that are conducive to searching, sorting and classifying. We then go on to question this “tidying up” approach and its underlying assumptions, highlighting issues surrounding removal of low-quality, redundant or nonsense metadata, and the potential risks of tidying too neatly and thereby losing the very openness that has made folksonomies so popular.

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Copyright Lorelle VanFossen, member of the 9Rules Network

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