November 19, 2008

Tag You're It

Actually, I titled this post, 'The Dilemas of Tagging', but thought it was too dry a title for a post. You see, I've yet to take the 'tag plunge'. I dabble a bit here and there, but frankly, I'm at a loss as to how to do it in a manner that will be meaningful. defines 'tag' as:
"A tag is a non-hierarchical keyword or term assigned to a piece of information (such as an internet bookmark, digital image, or computer file). This kind of metadata helps describe an item and allows it to be found again by browsing or searching. Tags are chosen informally and personally by the item's creator or by its viewer, depending on the system. On a website in which many users tag many items, this collection of tags becomes a folksonomy."

It's sooooooo complicated. There's no one set of rules. Take for example conferences. I've got a conference coming up, and I'm wondering should I tag items 'NYSCATE', 'NYSCATE08', 'NYSCATE2008', or all three. Then there's the tag that I should add if I'm posting about a session, so I might need to add something like 'SATPM14' (that's a legit tag, since it's the tag that has been assigned to my Visual Literacy workshop -- Saturday, in the afternoon, and I'm not sure what the '14' stands for). Then I might need to add a tag for visual literacy. Should it be 'visual literacy', 'visual lit', 'vis lit', maybe hyphenated?

Everyone I know has their own set of tags developed. For example, I like the tag 'CIO', which in my book means 'check it out' -- something I need to look at because I might want to use. Then there's 'read', which means I'd like to spend time reading this when I have a moment. Then there's 'www', which in my book means I'd like to add this to my school's website. And how about *, which means LOOK AT THIS NOW IT'S VERY, VERY, VERY IMPORTANT!!!

And now it's not just photographs that need tagging, but social bookmarking websites, and now posts on blogs! When will it ever end??????

If you have a resource that can help me make heads or tails out of this tagging business, please leave a comment below. And Steve, if you can, could you make one of the challenges on '30 Days To Be a Better Blogger' about tagging? And DON'T EVEN get me started on which items I should hyperlink in a blog post! LOL
Image Source: 'Folksonomy'