The Meedan Blog Archive

Collating better data about sources: schema, networks & 'slashtags'

In today's Meedan meet-up we'll be talking Tagging.  Under the supervision
of our UI lead, Chris Blow, we want to put in place a new community approach
to tagging so we can channel the source work we do every day into a more
structured data set.

In other words, every time a Meedani tags an article on
Delicious or Twitter, we want to encourage the use of some structured tags
that give key information (location, author, publisher type, outlet).

Open for debate is not just the data we should be providing in tags, but how to organize those tags.

Chris suggests a new syntax for Delicious using 'slashtags' which are easy to use, intuitive, potentially cross-network and which show the relationship between tag values (for example that a source is published in Iraq rather than that it is about Iraq).

Imagine this: we want to demonstrate in tags that an article is from a
newspaper in Iraq written by Ahmed Azzam about Syria. What's the best and
most efficient way to represent this?

Chris might suggest a syntax that looks like this:  /source/newspaper/iraq
/by/ahmed_azzam /about/syria  . The problem here though is that if I want
this article to show also under a parent tag 'source/newspaper' I have to
add that tag too.

There is plenty to debate here - but Chris insists that trial and error is key.

I think that any tag needs to follow a standard that meets several critiera:

1.) it should read naturally when spoken out loud (no dots, equals signs, or weird abbreviations) 2.) it should be as cross-network as possible (for now the syntax should not break on Twitter or Delicious) [1] 3.) it should rely an aliases instead of strict taxonomies (tag first, fix it later)

If you don't know much about tagging, or Delicious come along. If you know
lots about tagging and have totally different ideas, come along.

IRC chatroom #meedan 17GMT.