Sunday, November 7, 2010

Tags guidelines

We have introduced the "tags" feature several months ago and we've let trusted users experiment it pretty much freely. There has been a profusion of tags created but they are quite a mess and we decided to try tidying up.

From now on, if you are going to tag a sentence, please take into consideration the following things.

1. Use tags for objective and official information

We would like to keep the tags for "objective" and "official" information. If you want to categorize sentences for personal purpose, you should use lists.

For instance, you cannot tag a sentence "French exam" to mark the sentence as part of those you will use to practice before your French exam, you should create a list for that. We know lists are not as practical as tags, but we'll be improving the lists feature as soon as we have time.

2. Avoid creating new tags

Avoid creating new tags because it can make the cleaning process harder. If the tag you want to add doesn't appear in the autocompletion list, then it's a new tag, so don't add it unless you are really convinced it's a valid tag.

3. Ask before you create a new tag

We don't have clear rules yet for what is a valid tag and what is not, but one of our moderators (Swift) volunteered to take care of the tags. If you feel the need to create a new tag, it would be wise to ask Swift first. He will be officially in charge of tidying up the tags. He will be the one deciding what tag to keep or not and what tag to rename. Also, don't hesitate to contact him if you would like to help out. It's not easy to decide on these things.

4. Use English for tags, unless you really can't

We have decided to use English as the default language for tags. We will rename all non-English tags into their English equivalent, when it is possible. We can still accept non-English tags, but only if there is no English equivalent.

The point of having one common language is uniformity. It would be inefficient to have a bunch of sentences tagged "proverb" (English) and another bunch tagged "proverbe" (French). There is also no point having a sentence tagged with both "proverb" and "proverbe". They are the same notion. It can even make things confusing to have several tags to designate a same notion, that's why we have decided to have one default language. We will later implement the possibility to translate the tags and to display them in languages other than English.

5. How things are going to work
  • We'll try to keep the process as transparent as possible.
  • Swift will publish on the Wall the modifications that will be applied to the tags (i.e. renaming and deletions).
  • There will be a few days until these modifications are actually applied, in case people strongly disagree with a decision.
  • Swift will also add on his profile and his personal web page the links to every Wall post mentioning the modifications, for people to be able to trace back all the decisions about the tags.
  • If you need to protest against a decision, please refer to Swift.

1 comment:

  1. I'm a new member here but I think that you're opening a bad can of worms if you allow too many people to create tags.

    This is something that should be sorted out by moderators first. I'm not usually in favor of top-down solutions but this is one where it makes sense.

    Of course there should be a place where new tags can be suggested and debated.

    It might even make sense to create a hierarchical structure if there are too many tags.

    Hmmm. Just reread the post -- looks as if you guys thought about that.



Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.