Folksonomies as subject access a survey of tagging in library online catalogs and discovery layers
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Folksonomies as Subject Access A Survey of Tagging in Library Online Catalogs and Discovery Layers. IFLA Satellite Post-Conference: Beyond libraries – subject metadata in the digital environment and semantic web 17-18 August 2012, Tallinn. Yan Yi Lee, Wagner College, NY, USA

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Folksonomies as subject access a survey of tagging in library online catalogs and discovery layers

Folksonomies as Subject AccessA Survey of Tagging in Library Online Catalogs and Discovery Layers

IFLA Satellite Post-Conference: Beyond libraries – subject metadata in the digital environment and semantic web

17-18 August 2012, Tallinn

Yan Yi Lee, Wagner College, NY, USA

Sharon Q. Yang, Rider University, NJ, USA


Overview

Overview

  • Introduction

    • What is folksonomy?

    • Is folksonomy useful as subject access?

  • Survey-purpose and methodology

  • Findings and discussion

  • Conclusion


What is folksonomy

What is Folksonomy?

  • Taxonomy + folk = folksonomy

  • Classification of resources by users

  • Describe resources in users’ own language

  • Tags and tag clouds are folksonomy


Example of tag cloud

Example of Tag Cloud

Arcadia Public Library (Arcadia, California) - Feb12, 2012


Folksonomy as subject access

Folksonomy as Subject Access?

Past research compared LCSH with folksonomy in LibraryThing:

  • Up to 60% of the folksonomy duplicate LCSH.

  • A small percentage comprises useless tags

  • Tags use different terms than LCSH

  • Tags cover more aspect of a book’s subject

  • 20% to 30% can provide additional access to library collections


So the questions are

So the Questions are…

  • How do library systems handle folksonomy?

  • How do libraries handle folksonomy when given the capability?

  • How do users handle folksonomy when given the opportunity?


Methodology

Methodology

Systems (Marshall Breeding’s Library Technology Guide)

  • Discovery layers (15)

  • OAPC of Integrated Library System (37)

    Libraries

  • Koha OPACs (307)

    Users

  • Koha OPACS (307)


Discovery tools tagging

Discovery Tools & Tagging

The survey checked all the major discovery tools

  • 47% Discovery Tools allow users to add tags

    • 40% can display Tag list

    • 33% can display a tag cloud

    • 27% can display both

  • 47% execute a new search

  • 20% narrow a search


15 discovery tools tagging

15 Discovery Tools & Tagging


Integrated library systems and tagging

Integrated Library Systems and Tagging

  • The survey includes 37 Major Integrated Library Systems (ILSs)

    - Tagging function in ILS

    - Tag could or tag list in OPAC, or both

    - Tag to start a new search

    - Tag to refine a search result


37 ilss tagging

37 ILSs & Tagging


37 ilss tagging continued

37 ILSs & Tagging - continued


Integrated library systems and tagging continued

Integrated Library Systems and Tagging - continued

  • Only 2 out of 37 ILSs allow Tagging – Koha & Genesis G3 (5% ILSs)

  • Koha is the only ILS has tag cloud in the online catalog (OPAC)

  • Koha uses tags to enhance subject access

  • None ILS uses tags to refine search results


Libraries tagging

Libraries & Tagging

  • Take Koha as an example ILS for the survey

  • Koha - Open Source Integrated Library System, created in 1999

  • A survey of tagging activities in 307 Koha implementers

    - 218 public libraries

    - 62 academic libraries

    - 27 school libraries


Libraries tagging continued

Libraries & Tagging - continued

  • All tags in Koha Tag Cloud are created by users

  • Users can create tags in Koha for private or public

  • Tags were proved by librarians before adding to Cloud for public

  • External dictionary in Koha – a whitelist to verify terms added by users


Tagging in 307 koha opacs

Tagging in 307 Koha OPACs


Tagging in 307 koha opacs continued

Tagging in 307 Koha OPACs - continued


Tagging in 307 koha opacs continued1

Tagging in 307 Koha OPACs - continued

  • 149 out of 307 libraries encourage users to add tags to OPACs (51%)

    • Academic libraries: nearly 58% enabled

    • Public libraries: 49% enabled

    • School libraries: 22% enabled


Users tagging

Users & Tagging

  • How much did users take advantage of Tagging?

  • Tag clouds grouped into 4 categories

    - Large cloud (over 50 tags)

    - Small cloud (Less than 50 tags)

    - Empty cloud (Tagging turned on, but no tags)

    - No cloud (Tagging turned off)


Users tagging continued

Users & Tagging - continued


A test of tagging

A Test of Tagging

  • Tag Cloud in Wagner College Koha OPAC – a test (Sandbox)

  • Tags are simple terms created by students in their own language

  • Some tags are closer to subject headings

  • Searching by tags only retrieve limited titles

    tag “microbiology” => 3 titles

    subject “microbiology” => 262 titles


Tag cloud in wagner college koha opac

Tag Cloud in Wagner College Koha OPAC


Conclusion think outside the box

Conclusion - Think outside the box

  • More systems need to include tagging capability in design (47% in discovery layers vs. 5% in ILS)

  • All libraries should give users the opportunity to tag (49% enabled)

  • Find innovative ways to encourage users to participate in tagging


Food for thought

Food for Thought

More research is needed for

  • Why public library users are more active in tagging?

  • Better subject access to combine user contributed tagging and keyword extraction into one tag cloud?

  • How to link/map LCSH to user contributed tags?


Questions and answers

Questions and Answers


Credits

Credits

Breeding, M. (2012). Guides: Resources and content on relevant topics. In Library technology

guides: Key resources in the field of library automation [This site has comprehensive

listings of Integrated Library Systems and discovery tools]. Retrieved March 6, 2012,

from http://www.librarytechnology.org/web/Breeding/guides/

Kwan, Y., & Lois Mai, C. (2009). Linking folksonomy to Library of Congress subject headings:

an exploratory study. Journal Of Documentation, 65(6), 872-900.

Liu, C., Park, J., & Hu, X. (2010). User tags versus expert-assigned subject terms: A comparison

Of LibraryThing tags and Library of Congress Subject Headings. Journal Of Information

Science, 36(6), 763-779. doi:10.1177/0165551510386173

Rolla, P. J. (2009). User Tags versus Subject Headings: Can User-Supplied Data Improve

Subject Access to Library Collections?. Library Resources & Technical Services, 53(3),

174-184.

Wetterstrom, M. (2008). The Complementarity of Tags and LCSH — A Tagging Experiment

And Investigation into Added Value in a New Zealand Library Context. New Zealand

Library & Information Management Journal, 50(4), 296-310.

Yi, K., & Chan, L. (2009). Linking folksonomy to Library of Congress subject headings: an

exploratory study. Journal Of Documentation, 65(6), 872-900.


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