Tags – Tuesday Thingers

Today’s Tuesday Thingers question is about tags- do you tag? How do you tag? How do you feel about tagging- do you think it would be better to have standardized tags, like libraries have standardized subject headings, or do you like the individualized nature of tagging? What are your top 5 tags and what do they say about your collection or your reading habits?

My answer:

I’ve been thinking about tags recently, both on LibraryThing and on my blog because I’m not very good at doing either. On LT I tag by genre and roughly by subject, but it’s very general eg Fiction, Biography, Cookery etc. I also use TBR, although LT has a tick box for status – Currently Reading or To Read and D Read (my husband).  Most of my books are tagged as I try to remember to include a tag when I add a book. I’ve not been very consistent with tags and looking at them now I see I’ve used Non-Fiction for just one book! I would like to go through my catalogue and be more specific, but then I think I’d end up reading the books to decide what to tag them and really I’d rather spend the time reading them anyway. 

I wouldn’t like to have standardized subject headings as these might not match what I think of as the subject of the book, nor where I would look for it. I like seeing all the different variations other people have chosen to tag a book, so I wouldn’t want the tags to be assigned automatically.

Not counting the TBR or D Read tags (which are in the top five) my top five tags are:
Fiction (424), Cookery (64), Christianity (40), Biography (30), History (29). That’s not really representative of my books as most of the non-fiction is not in LT yet!

10 thoughts on “Tags – Tuesday Thingers

  1. That’s exactly my problem – I’d like to go back and make sure all my tags are uniform and meaningful, but I’d just end up reading the books! So far, I haven’t labeled anything as “read” or “TBR,” but I think that’s a great idea – one more thing to go back and add.

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  2. I like tags and I am not at all consistent about using them either. When I first starting blogging ‘books’ was one of my tags, which is sort of silly since nearly every post was a book post. Now I am trying to be more specific, so when I am searching for an old post I can find it. Fiction is also my most used tag in LT and I try and break the books up by where the author is from and what sort of book. Of course when I first started my tags weren’t very specific either, so again I’m getting better as I go.

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  3. I haven’t been very consistent with my tagging, either. I try, but I forget if I’ve used nonfiction or non fiction or non-fiction, etc. I know that my LT could use a good clean-up. But, I really don’t have any trouble finding things when I’m looking for them. I guess the problem would come in when someone else is searching my library by tags.

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  4. I think the tick boxes are in the process of going somewhere but at the moment they don’t do anything, you can’t sort on them etc., they’re too busy updating and debugging more important aspects of the site so I’ve read. I still tick them anyway but I also add them in as tags, much like I add in series information even though that now appears.

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  5. I never thought about tagging books I haven’t read. I’ve only done it with those that I have read. I sometimes do get frustrated with tagging, especially when I publish a review without adding the tags. I hate having to go back in and add those. Sometimes it’s just a pain.

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