October 24, 2006

10. Tagging

Tagging is an open and informal method of categorizing that allows users to associate keywords with online content (webpages, pictures & posts). Unlike library subject cataloging, which follows a strict set of guidelines (i.e.Library of Congress subject headings), tagging is completely unstructured and freeform, allowing users to create connections between data anyway they want.

This week, in addition to exploring Technorati and LibraryThing tagging, we want to also take at popular social bookmarking site called Del.icio.us (typed in as http://del.icio.us/).

Del.icio.us is a social bookmarking manager which allows you to bookmark a web page add tags to categorize your bookmarks. MRRL uses de.icio.us to manage the Reference Links section of our website, so MRRL has a del.icio.us account that you can use to explore the social networking parts of the site.

Many users find that real power of Del.icio.us is in the social network aspect, which allows you to see how other users have tagged similar links and also discover other websites that may be of interest to you. You can think of it as peering into another users’ filing cabinet, but with this powerful bookmarking tool each user's filing cabinet helps to build an expansive knowledge network.

For this exercise, you are asked to take a look at Del.icio.us and learn about this popular bookmarking tool.



  1. View the 12 minute Del.icio.us tutorial to get a good overview of its features.
  2. Take a look around Del.icio.us using the MRRL2 account that was created for this course (notice the links to the sites used in this course!)
  3. Explore the site options and try clicking on a bookmark that has also been bookmarked by a lot of other users. Can you see the comments they added about this bookmark or the tags that they used to catgorized this reference by?
  4. Create a blog post about your experience and thoughts about this tool.
    Can you see the potential of this tool for research assistance? Or just as an easy way to create bookmarks that can be accessed from anywhere?


Age is only a # said...

This was the most confusing thing that we have done yet, but maybe that is because research is not my forte. I think the idea of sharing booklists is great, but I do it through listservs for teen librarians. With additional time and understanding, this might be advantageous for me. I definitely see the advantage for students and researchers. (I did like the Billion Mazes).

cobb said...

Completed tagging etc. Why would we need a search engine for blogs?
del.icio.us would be useful for research. Flat hierarch vs collasping hierarchies...I think I get it. This is not the dummies version of Learning 2.0!! Now let's see if I can get this posted (tried and failed once already) What is this choose an identity thing? Posting as anonymous seems to be the easiest. Pamela, by the way, for my MRRL cohorts.

TDPIV said...

Does seem less user friendly than the tutorial and other devotees would have me believe.
don't do much research anymore but do see that a thot out structure would be usefull to those who do. the 'social part is also one of the scariest things about the uses of this new technology.

Tammy said...

I have to agree that this has been one of the most confusing lessons and this is after I've completed almost all the other lessons and came back to this one. This topic really may need more explanation and more step-by-step how to navigate the del.icio.us site.

Thoughts from the CROA said...

This excercise was very, very confusing to me at first until I got some explanation about the reasons for and uses of tagging. It is somewhat clearer now. If I continue to use tagging it will probably involve my Delicious account and me using it to corral website addresses that I commonly visit in one spot so that I don't have to memorize all of them. That way I can access the sites in my Delicious account from any computer with internet access.

Robin said...

Tagging is complicated to get until you start using it. Your example of using it for bookmarks you can access from any computer is great - but there are a lot of bookmarking services out there that do that. This particular application has added a social aspect (which is why it is considered a "web 2.0" application). This means that if you should tag a bookmark with the "KCRoyals" tag, you can then click on that tag to see what other sites other people have labeled with that tag. Then, if you find someone who seems to have a treasure trove of KC Royals links and information, you can make that person your "friend" in the del.icio.us network and get informed of whenever he adds a new link to his del.icio.us account.