Site taxonomy (tags)

This is a collectively editable wiki page. Be bold and improve it by adding any relevant information you may have.

Like most web sites, this one allows you to tag content so that related content can easily be found together.
Unlike most web sites, tagging content is not something we do as an after-thought, without paying it too much attention. The proper tagging of content is an important part of our strategy to serve the community.

Primary objectives

Although currently a work in progress, the site taxonomy, i.e. the way different pages are content are tagged according to topics, is an important way content is categorized.

The aims are:

  • To allow users to find the most relevant content on any topic.
  • To find the most compelling content, whenever it was posted, newer content not necessarily being more interesting than older one.
  • To provide a community-editable wiki article related to each topic.
  • To present on any topic the best available content, with the highest signal to noise ratio.

Tagging policy

Community driven

Tags are considered community editable content. It means that users may be able to edit the tags on pages created by any other user, including tags on personal pages (blog entries, personal book pages).
Generally speaking, the tagging policy is to ensure that the aforementioned goals are being met, especially to ensure that any user can find the most compelling content in the most appropriate place.

This site will be further improved to allow members to edit tags everywhere, and to make any such changes visible so that interested parties and the community can review them.

Tag combinations

Specific content

Generally speaking, content should be as specific as possible.

As mentioned above, one of the main objectives is to enhance the signal to noise ratio. The problem is that someone's signal can be another person's noise. It really depends what the user is looking for.

In order to allow users to find precisely what they want, tags can be combined so as to narrow down the search results.

Let's imagine two discussion threads, one about Finland, another about Basic Income. In which thread would an article about Basic Income being implement in Finland go? Putting it in both would cause some duplication of content and confuse people as to where best discuss the topic. Worse, people specifically interested about anything related to Finland may find the discussion thread about Basic Income, but for them the specific bit about Finland would be signal while all the rest of the thread would be perceived as noise. Conversely, someone interested about Basic Income might find the discussion thread about Finland, and will be interested to read about the policy implementation there, but might consider all the rest (e.g. touristic information about Finland) noise.

The basic mistake in the above example is the attempt to have extended discussion threads on one broad topic. The solution is to post each interesting, worthy news item separately, and tag them appropriately. Thus, following our example, a news article about a trial implementation of Basic Income in Finland can be posted separately, tagged appropriately with the tags Basic Income and Finland.

Generic tags

As opposed to content and discussion threads, which should be as specific as possible, tags should be as generic as possible. Thus, with a good combination of the two, readers will be a able to find the exact information they are looking for.

For example, having the very specific tag Children charities in the UK would make it hard to search for charities anywhere in the world (because one would have to explicitely include all the countries in the search), for all the topics related to the UK or for all information relevant to education or children's Rights.

Instead, it is more helpful to have the generic tags: UK, Charity, Education and Children's Rights. Appropriate content can then be tagged with all the relevant tags, allowing readers to find the very precise content they are after.

How to combine tags

tid1,tid2: content with both tags: narrow the search.
tid1+tid2: content with either tags: broaden the search.

Best practice for new content


Tags within comments

Within discussion threads (blogs), it is possible to change the tags within comments. It is important to keep the following in mind:

  • Tag changes within a comment apply to the whole post, not to the comment only.
  • Tagging content is meant to be a collective endeavour, so that the best content can be found in the most appropriate places. The ability to change tags within comments is part of that logic.

How to...?

How to tag content?

When you create (/node/add/type) or edit (/node/edit/nnn) content, you may see a field "Topics", which allows you to search and select existing tags to attach to the content.

Tagging content, step 1

Type in any partial string like "Cor" and wait for the background process to return a list of available tags that contains this string.
You can refine your search by typing longer strings, for example "Corpora" and see what comes up.

Tagging content, step 2

Use your mouse or the down-arrow button to select the tag you want.
This should create a new checkbox with the tag name and a link to the relevant content listing.
Keep the checkbox checked and save the content.

How and when to create new tags?

Before creating a new tag, consider the following:

  1. Check first for the existence of similar tags.
  2. Tag creation are subject to the tagging policy.
  3. Only create reusable, generic tags.
  4. Tags considered inappropriate or not useful enough will be deleted or merged into other existing tags.
  5. If you are not sure whether a new tag would be appropriate or not, you may ask first.
  6. Creating new tags requires the necessary permission. You may ask to be granted this permission if you don't have it yet.

Creating a new tag, step 1

If you are certain that the new tag meets the required standard, then you can create it by typing the tag as if you were searching for existing tags. The system will reply with an option, at the bottom of the list, which says: "Creating new term: ...".

Creating a new tag, step 2

Select that option and a dialogue should appear that will ask you to confirm the creation of this new tag. If you confirm it, a background process will create the tag and automatically add a checkbox with the new tag to your content.

Creating a new tag, step 3

Remember to save the page to complete the process!

News and discussion

Issues related to this page:

ProjectSummaryStatusPriorityCategoryLast updatedAssigned to
websiteTaxonomy: explain use of tid1+tid2activemajorfeature request47 weeks 7 hoursaugustin