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Handout for Tagging and User-Contributed Metadata


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Fry, Eileen and Jenn Riley. "Tagging and User-Contributed Metadata." Digital Library Program Brown Bag Presentation, October 18, 2006.

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Handout for Tagging and User-Contributed Metadata

  1. 1. Some sites using user-contributed metadata Flickr <> is an online photo sharing site, which states “help people make their photos available to the people who matter to them” and “enable new ways of organizing photos” as its two main goals. <> is a site for tagging and sharing Web sites, including “our favorite articles, blogs, music, restaurant reviews, and more.” Wikipedia <> is an online, entirely user-created encyclopedia. Any registered user can create or edit entries. Some level of editorial control exists, but in general the community relies on its users to monitor the quality of content. Technorati <> is a popular site for exploring creator-tagged blog entries (among a few other things). LibraryThing <> is an application of tagging to personal book collections. It can pull bibliographic information from the Library of Congress or, saving users the time of entering this information manually. A free account allows a user to tag and manage up to 200 books. The site also features disambiguation mechanisms whereby users can tell the system that two books represent the same work, or two authors represent the same person. Perhaps LibraryThing’s most important and innovative feature is providing recommendations for new books to read based on the tags a user has applied to his collection. PennTags <> is a tagging site intended for the University of Pennsylvania community. In addition to tagging Web sites, PennTags allows users to tag records from the Penn online catalog and individual journal articles. It represents an interesting move by a library into the tagging community. Steve <> is an initiative from the museum community to harness the efforts of knowledgeable users in describing museum resources. Steve is unusual for a tagging initiative in that users don’t select their own resources to tag, but rather are presented with system-selected resources for tagging. It remains to be seen if the data produced by tagging in this type of environment results in the rich data provided by users describing their own resources. Connotea <> is a tagging site intended for “researchers and clinicians” to “keep links to the articles you read and the websites you use, and a place to find them again.” It markets itself as a way for scientists to organize scholarly reference lists, and originated from the Nature Publishing Group. CiteULike <> “is a free service to help academics to share, store, and organise the academic papers they are reading.” Users tag citations, and add them to personal libraries.
  2. 2. 2 ESP Game <> from Carnegie Mellon University collects labels for images on the Web from users by pairing two users online at the same time and challenging them to agree on a label for a series of images. They offer an image search <> using the labels they’ve collected through the game. Google Image Labeler <> also matches users with partners to label images. When two users agree on a label, a new image is displayed for labeling. Points are awarded based on how many images were labeled before time runs out. Amazon Mechanical Turk <> is a service that matches tasks easily performed by humans with software applications that need the information provided by those tasks. Individuals who complete tasks earn small amounts of money, generally less than a dollar. The service includes an API so that developers can integrate the service into their applications.
  3. 3. 3 Further reading Bearman, David and Jennifer Trant. “Social Terminology Enhancement through Vernacular Engagement,” D-Lib Magazine, 11(9), 2005. Golder, Scott A. & Bernardo A. Huberman, “The Structure of Collaborative Tagging Systems,” Journal of Information Science 32 (2), 2006, 198–208. Hammond, Tony, Timo Hannay, Ben Lund, and Joanna Scott, “Social Bookmarking Tools (I): A General Review,” D-Lib Magazine, 11(4), 2005. Kroski, Ellyssa, “The Hive Mind: Folksonomies and User-Based Tagging,” tagging/ Lund, Ben, Tony Hammond, Martin Flack, and Timo Hannay, “Social Bookmarking Tools (II): A Case Study – Connotea,” D-Lib Magazine, 11(4), 2005. Mathes, Adam, “Folksonomies – Cooperative Classification and Communication Through Shared Metadata.” Computer Mediated Communication – LIS590CMC, Graduate School of Library and Information Science, University of Illinois Urbana- Champaign, December 2004. mediated-communication/folksonomies.html. Peterson-Lugo, Billie. “Tech Talk: Folksonomy,” Library Instruction Round Table News, 29(1), September 2006. Shirkey, Clay. “Ontology is Overrated: Categories, Links, and Tags” van Hooland, Seth. “From Spectator to Annotator: Possibilities offered by User- Generated Metadata for Digital Cultural Heritage Collections,” September 2006 You’re It! A Blog on Tagging