Genres vs Tags

02005-07-04 | Uncategorized | 3 comments

I do not like Genres, surprise, surprise! I do like Tags. I was just thinking of Tags and how it would be great for our ListeningLounge to:

1. list all the tags we use – either in a vertical row on the right (or left) side – like does, or in a field like Flickr and Technorati do. I am not sure whether I like the fact that Flickr makes more popular tags larger, but maybe customers will like that. Something being popular has no effect on me and I am not sure I would like it to have an effect on my listeners…

2. have tags for each song – i.e. AlhambraJackson from La Semana might have the tags:

ottmar instrumental guitar flamenco hybrid funky groove benson slap-bass

– or something like that… while most of my songs would not be tagged with funky. So, the tag funky could lead people straight to that song.

Maybe there is a way an album gets album-tags and each song automatically receives those album-tags as well as a number of unique song-tags.


  1. princessflutter

    Tags are much more interesting and a lot less AOL.
    flutter on….

  2. Adam Solomon

    Tags are, I’d agree, a great idea, but…something about them just bugs me. Looking at, say, the AlhambraJackson sample tags there, I don’t know…maybe it’s the subjectivity? Where if I find AJ funky and you don’t…but I guess that’s a problem you really can never get rid of, especially with such a large fanbase. I think it’s more of an issue of overuse, to the point where keeping each song in line with the same tagging system eventually gets to be a real pain in the tuchas. For example, for AJ, the terms ottmar, instrumental, guitar, and flamenco would probably be rather unnecessary because they can all apply to almost all of your songs. And then you have to make sure to label every song you put up with those same redundant four tags. Then other tags, like groove, are extremely ambiguous, to the point where tagging a multitude of songs with tags like that becomes near-impossible, again. And others yet, like Benson…well, I can see the Benson influence (and who doesn’t love Benson?), but I think some, like those, are rather unnecessary. In the end, I think that–assuming you adopted a tagging system like the one you try above for AJ–then once the LL grows larger the list of tags will just be too unwieldy to really deal with, and too ambiguous to be useful. For that song, say, it would be good to keep funky, slap-bass, maybe hybrid and/or groove. Does this come too close to being considered genres and not tags? Maybe, but I think it’s the best idea.

    On a similar note, for the post tags you tried–of course, if you’re tagging all your posts, it’s ottmar and diary. The rest…well, honestly, they’re all perfect, and if you could tag posts like that (wouldn’t that be a great feature for Blogger?), that would make any blog 100 times easier to sort through for old posts.

  3. Ottmar

    You make some very good points, Adam. There will be redundant tags and we will impose our opinion on the tags. Some of that will depend on wheher we create a separate search by artist field, or a search by album… I think it might be cool to search by tag only. A lot of this also depends on Canton. He is writing the code and needs to create a good flow for the LL pages. In a few weeks we’ll discover the results….


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