Noch ein schöner Text zum Taggen (bzw. das Beste das mir seit langem zum Thema über den Weg gelaufen ist): A social analysis of tagging

I come across an article I want to remember. I tag it. That moment, I go from wandering the web alone to joining a group of others. This transition is important. In a moment, I am transported to a crowd of people with whom I have at least one thing in common. And best of all, I can enjoy their presence, but I don’t need to converse. After being on many mailing lists for many years, let me say, conversation is often overrated. Often, I like to be in the company of others, without needing to follow threads and participate. It is the same reason that I like working in a cafe – enjoying the presence of others without the burden of active interaction. Similarly, tags provide a companionable social hum that I enjoy.

…An important characteristic of tagging systems is that they lead to ad-hoc group creation, lowering the barriers to finding like-minded others, enabling social discovery and connections.

The basic social formations supported by tagging are more like crowds than true groups. I see the milling crowds and have some idea about what they are doing (reading, watching), but I don’t know these people – they are not part of my network or members of my mailing lists and online communities I subscribe to. These are ad-hoc groups brought together by a particular tag or resource.

… Like all good social structures, tagging is malleable – it takes the form best supported by the content, rather than impose a rigid structure on the content. On Flickr, can lead to ad-hoc collaboration, collection self-expression that is very different than the type of tagging frenzy we witness for popular articles on As tagging spreads we are likely to see other types of emergent ad-hoc collaboration.

… tagging captures our individual conceptual associations, but does not force us to categorize. It enables loose coordination, but does not enforce the same interpretation of a concept. We could all tag items as “art” but mean very different things. That would create chaos in a shared folder scheme, but works well in a social tagging system.


Auch lesenswert: The Good, The Bad & The Taggy