Yesterday I listened and watched a webcast on “Why the Masses Love Metadata: Folksonomies, Tagging and the Amateur Expert” from the Education Institute presented by Geoffrey Harder.
There were about seven of us from my department that watched it; we really don’t have many opportunities for professional development so when I asked for work to pay for the webcast my supervisor said “no problem” but she was going to invite others to join in. The more the merrier! (There happened to be an empty office, so we set up the projector in there.)
I was afraid this would be too “techie” for my co-workers, though everyone knows cataloguers love metadata. They did have a range of reactions, some still didn’t “get it”, others found it very informative. For me, it was just a review, mostly, of what I already thought and knew, but it’s always good to hear things again in a different way. Besides, he also had some references and quotes that I hadn’t seen before. For those interested, Harder has posted his slides which you can get to from his blog, Blogdriverswaltz.com
I look forward to the day when users can tag in their library’s catalogue, and it’s great to see that some libraries are already experimenting with this (like UPenn.