Online from: 1977
Subject Area: Library and Information Studies
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|Title:||An examination of social tagging interface features and functionalities: An analytical comparison|
|Author(s):||Ali Shiri, (School of Library and Information Studies, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada)|
|Citation:||Ali Shiri, (2009) "An examination of social tagging interface features and functionalities: An analytical comparison", Online Information Review, Vol. 33 Iss: 5, pp.901 - 919|
|Keywords:||Communication technologies, Internet, Social networks, User interfaces|
|Article type:||Research paper|
|DOI:||10.1108/14684520911001909 (Permanent URL)|
|Publisher:||Emerald Group Publishing Limited|
Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to report on a comparative and analytical examination of ten social tagging systems' interfaces and their features and functionalities. The specific objective of the study was to examine the ways in which the user interfaces of social tagging systems encourage and provide users with features to assign, explore, browse and make use of tags during their interaction with social tagging sites.
Design/methodology/approach – The user interface features and functionalities of ten social tagging sites (six social bookmarking and four social media sharing sites) are examined. A categorisation of tag-related features is developed for analysis. The sites are selected based on such criteria as popularity, variety of site type, and inclusion of tagging features and content type.
Findings – The findings of this study show that there is an emerging interface design paradigm with respect to social tagging sites that reflects a particular focus on exploratory search and browsing features and services. Some of the key areas discussed are: user tagging features; exploratory and tag browsing features; and interface layout.
Practical implications – The findings of this study of the user interface features of social tagging sites provide a comprehensive picture of the possible and potential features that can be incorporated into new social tagging systems. Based on the evidence found in the examined social tagging interfaces, recommendations are made on the design of tag posting, tag use, tag browsing, tag lists and tag clouds. The design recommendations offer ideas for the development of more sophisticated exploratory and interactive user interfaces for social tagging systems.
Originality/value – This is the first paper that reports on a comparative and exploratory examination of social tagging user interface features and functionalities.
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