When Tagging Goes Bad

I recently added tagging to this weblog. But, as Om Malik writes, all is not well in the tagging world:

So this is where I lose the plot - I tag my post, Technorati benefits, and despite all that, my tags help spammers who clog my RSS readers gain more readers. That's absolutely rotten! So essentially the spammers can write a script, generate tags, stay high on the Technorati listings and fool people into visiting their sites. By tagging I am helping this scumbags, the RSS-link blog spammers. This is clearly not going to help Technorati (or infact anyone's reputation) as a good search tool.

This is a variation of comment spam but instead of them visiting our sites and defacing them, they deface Technorati and then we all link to them! How perverse can we be?

My tags don't link across to anyone partly for this reason and also partly because there are so many places I could link them to that I don't want to favour any one of them.

While we're on the subject, I've decided that I'm going to change the tagging system here. Rather than me assigning tags, I should be allowing others to tag them à la flickr. Think of this as microcomments - anyone will be able rate or categorise my postings, perhaps making associations I hadn't thought of. Because they only link within my own site, spammers will have no reason to abuse them.

Should be do-able with a few tweaks to the templates provided I can get the permissions right.

Permalink: http://blog.iandavis.com/2005/08/when-tagging-goes-bad/


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