Blog Post 2: Thoughts on Tagging and Informatics

Informatics: how people relate to information science.

An alternative title could be: How does tagging help people relate to information science?

One thing that I do find educational about tagging is discovering the words that people will use for tags to describe an item in a very short phrase or key word. Eventually, one will find that the tag is not what they would say is what that word means to them. I find I like the multi word tags to get realize homonymy: disambiguating different concepts of that use the same word. (Dr. Maccall would say “The Great Soda Versus Pop Controversy.” @StevenMaccall #coke #pop #soda) There are no authority records or subject headings with social media; it is open to any word(s) anyone wants to associate with their online data.

Though librarians like to use subject headings when “tagging” books, information we post on social media or blogs would probably be discovered by more people if multiple tags are used: synonyms of the word we would actually use for the subject heading. Perhaps even a related trending phrase so those who are viewing the trending logs of tagged items would see our items.

I personally see a trend of people throwing out ideas or pictures outside their in-person comfort zone, or trying new things and posting to the public (the failures of trying new things seems more popular than the triumphs). To have folks take notice of librarians, I would suggest the same: post on items other than just sharing events on story hour – make it drag queen story hour like this New York Public Library.

Tagging is useful on social media if done in the manner that is actually being used. Keeping with the trends will help people relate to information science in that they are connected to the data and getting the information they want.  In the meantime, I’ll stick to my old-school cataloging.

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One thought on “Blog Post 2: Thoughts on Tagging and Informatics

  1. ginbslis

    “information we post on social media or blogs would probably be discovered by more people if multiple tags are used”

    If the goal is discoverability, then keeping an eye on trending topics and issues is also a good way to increase visibility. Creating content and using tags relevant to current topics of discussion, while also tying it back to the library, is a fantastic way of getting more eyes on your stuff. Unfortunately, like you hinted in your last paragraph, doing this in a meaningful way is extremely tricky.

    Like

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