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Tags of any nature will only be seen with a specific book that has had that tag placed on it.
To see the tags that have been applied to a book:
Tags speed up and enrich searches. They expand the mountain of search terms currently available, which are limited to very basic search parameters like keyword, genre, title, and author right now. We can find, locate, and identify items in a huge database ( for example - all the books in the PBS database) that our social group (PBS members who participate in tagging) think are "great bedtime stories" or "ignorant rantings of a liberal/conservative". The more group members tag and advertise their tags in forum threads and share their tags by turning it on so that they are public (not shutting it off), the more powerful certain tags become. Popular tags rise up in rank and displace useless, unpopular, less used tags. Tags speed up and get members to reach items (PBS books) faster and better.
http://blog.commonkitchen.com/2007/07/31/what-tagging-is-and-what-it-isnt/ (common layman's description of tagging)
Link (more technical description of tagging)
Why would you even want to tag? Here's a scenario to visualize it: Say that you are inside your house. You are safe and warm but alone with your own thoughts. You have a chance to venture outside your own little world to attend a flea market or a carnival. You know that there might be some strange sights and sounds you might not make yourself or like right offhand, but at the same time, you're sort of eager to see more of the world and mingle with others to "touch antennae" with them. If you are curious, open-minded, have no need to agree with everything you see and hear in the world, can tolerate others voicing their views in their language, have an accepting personality, not overly sensitive or fearful of radical thoughts being expressed, and are willing to grow the system patiently without complaining too early on in the game, then you are most likely to find tagging fun and adventurous.
Tagging is powerful when more people keep using it. Unpopular tags will fall by the wayside. You can advertise and share your tags through forum threads. You can invite more people/friends to use your tags. The higher the number of uses, the more popular tags can drive away unpopular ones. It's a way of socializing on a search engine!
Say you have read a book titled "Peter Pan' by James M. Barrie. The PBS database will reveal this book to someone who searches by the terms Peter Pan, Barrie, fairy tale, and literature/fantasy. But if 100 people tag this book "great bedtime story" (tags used 100 times on this particular book in the database), someone can find this book using "great bedtime story" as tag search term (once R&R implements searches through tags). That person knows that at least 100 group members on PBS think this book is a great bedtime story. If this person finds 50 books tagged "great bedtime story", he or she can tell which ones are the most popular "great bedtime stories' among taggers by the number of times this particular tag was used on each of those 50 books.
Conversely, if one person tagged this book something nasty like "bullshit" but no one else followed suit, well then, the "great bedtime story" tag wins! It gets seen by everyone, while the less used and less popular tag "bullshit" stays invisible, only to be viewed in private by that one loner who labelled it "bullshit". Fair enough?
Last Edited on: 10/14/07 6:18 PM ET - Total times edited: 1