No one gets tags


<sigh> I got too attached to the title “Folksonomies of Folks”
for my Metadata Schemas and Applications paper (due tomorrow – that
is, in 11 hours!). As a result, I find myself now writing a paper on
tagging and folksonomies in online dating sites.

They suck. They all suck. I’m serious. There are a few good ideas, but
generally they suck.

VerbDate throws the term “tag” around,
but it, like, _so_ doesn’t get it. Heck, there aren’t enough tag-savvy
users, so one of the ‘popular’ tags is “looking for a guy who can make
me laugh and is not still living with his parents”. There’s no way to
get a cloud of just the most popular tags – you have to know what
you’re looking for. There’s no easy way to add tags to yourself. And
here’s the most brain-dead thing of all: you can’t tag other people’s
profiles! No tagging, no folksonomies, nothing. Zilch.

RogueConnect‘s stuck with its fashion focus. Not bad, but too visually-oriented for any real depth. Unless you’re the kind of person who likes only Armani-wearing people, that is. Or at least people who say they wear Armani. The only interesting thing here is that the site creator’s noticed people are more comfy tagging blog posts than they are tagging people, so that’s something cool there. But tags aren’t front-and-center on people’s profiles, and they’re anonymous. So no folksonomy for you, either.

ConsuMating _almost_ got it right with
weekly polls and questions to encourage people to keep developing
their profiles. Then the service shoots itself in the foot with its
business model limiting you to 10 free messages per month, which naturally
drives all these users to make tags their free communication tool,
polluting the tagspace for individual users and making it imposssible
to get a quick idea of someone’s interests. Oh, you can’t tag someone
with a tag they already have, so you can’t see who else thought
someone was cool, so you can’t follow the links to find out whom else
_they_ thought was cool, so you can just forget about social
filtering. Heck, you can’t even pull up a list of the people _you_
tagged cool. Not that there are ever any cool people on these social
networking websites.

It’s all messed up. And to think CNet actually bought consumating,
sucky domain aside…


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Random Japanese sentence: 犬か猫か鶏を飼うようにしなさい。 Try getting a dog, a cat or a chicken.

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