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Rick Wash
404 Wilson Rd #402
402 Communication Arts and Sciences
Michigan State University
East Lansing, MI 48824

Cell: (734) 730-1188
Office: (517) 355-2381

Influences on Tag Choices in

by: Emilee Rader and Rick Wash


Collaborative tagging systems have the potential to produce socially constructed information organization schemes. The effectiveness of tags for finding and re-finding information depends upon how individual users choose tags; however, influences on users’ tag choices are poorly understood. We quantitatively test competing hypotheses from the literature concerning these choices, using data from (a collaborative tagging system for organizing web bookmarks) and a computer model of possible tag choice strategies. We find evidence that users choose tags in a pattern consistent with personal information management goals, rather than as a result of social influence.


Emilee Rader and Rick Wash. “Influences on Tag Choices in del.icio.usProceedings of the ACM Conference on Computer Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW). San Diego, CA. November 2008.

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