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Tagging of individual posts within a thread

snozboz
Grafter
Posts: 384
Thanks: 2
Registered: 27-07-2007

Tagging of individual posts within a thread

See "Proposed Forum Layout" discussion for where I got this idea from.
My idea is for individual posts within threads to be taggable: for tags to be able to be added to them to highlight what their purpose, meaning, and usefulness is.  Then for tags to be searchable, so you could for instance, search for all posts that contain "spam" in the thread subject AND have the tags "summary" and "advice".  You would then hopefully end up with search results containing posts giving a summary of advice about spam.  Without the tags, you wouldn't be able to eliminate posts that moaned about spam, or joked about it, or talked about a particular spam issue that no longer applies, or asked for help but didn't feature any ideas, or asked for clarification etc etc.
Does this make sense?
The details would need to be sorted out, like who can tag which posts (the author, the mods, members who've posted a few times at least, everyone, everyone except the author), how many tags are allowed per post, are the tags all predefined (in which case, what should they be?) or are they free-form, can the tags be used for "rating" a post or should they just be for "describing" the post etc etc
But what do you think about the general idea?  (Assuming it's possible.)
Martin
3 REPLIES
James
Grafter
Posts: 21,036
Registered: 04-04-2007

Re: Tagging of individual posts within a thread

I don't think it's possible within SMF but I'm sure a knowledgeable moderator will correct me if I'm wrong Smiley
N/A

Re: Tagging of individual posts within a thread

Unless its available as a modification package, I don't think it is.
It would have the potential to be a useful tool, but it puts a fair bit of collaborative work into the mix.
To ensure that posts are judged consistently across a wide populous of users who could add the tags might be difficult to manage. Reducing the size of such a group would mean a fairly mammoth task for each of the participants.
~
To approach the subject of getting useful posts to be more visible, but from a different angle; what about submitting them as tutorials?
We have a tutorials site over at Usertools, (link:tutorials) which contains a few useful ones.
Historically, the tutorials team had a place on the Plusnet forum (when it was seperate from the other vISPs) and they composed and edited the tutorials.
Since moving the composition of tutorials away from a dedicated team within the forums and into the Plusnet Usergroup some focus has been lost.
I occasionally edit existing ones, but I don't have the time or knowledge to create new ones.
Under the new layout proposed for here, we could look at adding a board for discussion of new tutorials, That way, if somebody saw a particularly useful thread, they could link to it, and we could start to pull together the useful content from that thread into a new post, to be used as a basis for a new tutorial.
Its a relatively simple task for us to then create a new tutorial from a single post in a thread that contains all the pertinant info.
We'd have the benefit of a categorised index of tutorials, with an excellent opportunity to pull info together more easily from the Community forums.
snozboz
Grafter
Posts: 384
Thanks: 2
Registered: 27-07-2007

Re: Tagging of individual posts within a thread

Quote from: James_G
It would have the potential to be a useful tool, but it puts a fair bit of collaborative work into the mix.
To ensure that posts are judged consistently across a wide populous of users who could add the tags might be difficult to manage. Reducing the size of such a group would mean a fairly mammoth task for each of the participants.

I think this collaborative work could be a really good thing.  If tagging was done by everyone, the theory of social networking & taxonomy is that the variations of quality of opinion you get from smaller groups of people get balanced out by having a large number of community members participating - the "bell curve" effect.  And if it was done by a smaller group like the mods, you don't have to worry about it either, because the group is selected for their quality and becomes an even closer community so thinks as a group without regulation or extra work.
Quote from: James_G
To approach the subject of getting useful posts to be more visible, but from a different angle; what about submitting them as tutorials?

It's going to be very interesting to see how this works for the "community generated support pages" we hear are coming.  I'm not convinced that this will "sort" the support pages in and of itself; it's likely that most of the work will need to be done by a small group of people (otherwise it won't happen), and so it might end up getting left to them to do all of it (leading to resentment, lack of momentum, and you don't benefit from a big range of skills and experience).  There needs to be some sort of active "community building" to keep bringing new people in to the group who do the work, keep encouraging and supporting them, and help them to feel able to stop before it becomes a chore; doing this just once at the start of the process is not enough - it needs to keep happening in perpetuity.
But this is not one of the "problems" I was trying to solve with my idea of "Tagging of individual posts within a thread".  My idea is to highlight those gems within threads that won't ever become a support page or tutorial.  As well as to highlight posts within threads that give effective summaries and advice on the issue concerned, so you don't have to read the whole thread to get the idea (particularly when searching).
Martin