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Blog : Posts tagged with 'Technorati'

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More on tagging

In which we re-cover the mechanics of tagging and folksonomies


Technorati have written back following up Sunday’s post on tagging. They agree that making your tags invisible – though it would work – is indeed a dirty and underhand way of doing things. So, it looks as if that option is best avoided. The email-writer included a link to a blog post written by their Chief Technologist, Tantek Celik, back in March (or possibly June), in which he discovered he was accidentally putting hidden tags on his posts too. The point being: visible data is better than invisible, and people will treat it as more reliable.

Plus, I’ve also been finding that the tag paragraph can be an easy way to add extra information or a new angle to a post, one that a regular reader isn’t going to find until they get to the end. It’s a way to confirm: yes, this was what I was thinking, even though I didn’t spell it out explicitly. Monday’s post is an example of that, not a very good one, but the best example so far.

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You’re It

In which we consider the mechanics of tagging


Feeling at a loose end, I’ve been experimenting with possible ways of adding to the posts here, without making them unreadable. There are three ideas I’m trying:

a) using a different class of link for links that identify tags
b) additionally, confining tags to a footnote-like section at the bottom of each post
c) putting tags inside an “invisible” block inside each post (using ‘display: none’ to hide the tag paragraph)

This post uses (a); and I’ve also edited Friday’s post to use a combination of (a) and (b). Thursday’s post, on the other hand, has been edited with (b) alone. My first reaction is that including the tags in the post body makes the post look a bit too messy, and not many people will realise the difference between the two sorts of link. If you have an opinion, let me know what you think. Would (c) even work, or would it just be ignored?

Update, later that day: I’ve emailed Technorati Support to ask if (c) would actually work. It does feel like a bit of a dirty, underhand trick to pull though.

Update, some years later – Jan 24th ’09 to be precise: I eventually decided on a method combining (a) and (b). And – pending a redesign – I still use it. However, I’m currently rewriting all the tags so they don’t go to Technorati any more, they go to “tag pages” within this site instead. It’s demonstrated, for one thing, that lots of people do actually click on the tags. Incidentally, as part of this, I’ve regularised the “test posts” described above; the “(b) test” no longer looks as described.

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