Russell Beattie writes about the tagging enabled hyper-forum:

The core of the idea which Anthony implemented and expanded upon was this: Del.icio.us introduced (or at least popularized) the concept of tagging as a way of organizing links. Tags in my mind are flat-namespace meta data that can help identify a piece of content in an almost democratic fashion. Flickr took the concept and applied it to photos, so that people could organize photos based on this simple meta data. I didn’t grok this at first, until I had created a new flickr user called MobileMonday and blogged that people should send me their photos of the event and I would post them under that name. That’s when Mike Rowehl responded and said, more or less “hey moron, everyone can post under their *own* name and just tag them ‘mobilemonday’ instead.” And that’s when a little light went on over my head about tags.

So I thought, what happens if you apply tags to messages as well? “Messages” being things like comments and blog posts, but in a forum-like structure, where you could follow threads in x dimensions. Add in Alerts (IM, email, etc.) and RSS and it becomes really useful as a discussion tool. Once we started working on that idea we expanded on it, and added URLs and user names to the tag namespace, now I can include URLs, but not just as way of sharing that link but of *commenting* on it. Then as a publisher, I can watch different tags, URLs and if someone responds my posts or puts my name in the tag, I get notified of those messages.

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Rajesh Jain

An Entrepreneur based in Mumbai, India.