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Using for Eclipse Marketing, The Call Out

Ian Skerrett wrote, and for:’ed me, about using for Eclipse Callisto marketing. He’s done some tag gardening for tracking posts about Callisto, and tracking blogs and blog posts on the topic:

More generally, what this means is that Ian has “called out” (see below) two tags for tracking Callisto: callisto and callisto-blogs. This means that if you want to get involved in the conversation around Callisto, you can just tag a URL with one of those tags and/or for:ianskerrett to send the link directly to Ian.

Why do I care?

Aside from the sheer fact of getting more people to use, which I’m always happy to see, this is great because it moves what would normally be a static, “closed” web page into a fully enabled information-platform. That page would be the usual “buzz” page that you’d see on a website.

Why does this matter? Typically, buzz pages don’t have RSS feeds, so you can’t really keep up them. More importantly, it’s not clear what to do if you want to help make the buzz page better. To put it another way, a static buzz page can’t benefit much from The Network.

Since Ian has done this tag gardening, those problems are solved.

It’s also remarkable that the Director of Marketing for Eclipse is opening himself up so much to the community. I should rephrase: it’s not unexpected from Ian, but it’s unexpected from that role in general. How many other Directors, VP’s, or execs of marketing have said the equivalent of “send me links you think are relevant to my work”?

The next issue becomes getting people to use it, which I believe will come, if it hasn’t already, esp. in the Eclipse community. We’ll have to see how many for:‘s and other tagging people do: hopefully Ian will report back after awhile.

A Web 2.0 Pattern: The Call Out, or, Emergent Behavior Gardening

As an aside, I at first wrote that Ian “created” these tags. But, in reality, he’s just called them out, or “blessed” them. The thing with tag gardening is that you’re not really creating new tags. Instead, you’re attaching semantics to tags. More generally, you’re doing a Web 2.0 pattern that I’ve been meaning to write-up: you’re participating in emergent semantics. I need a better phrase for it, but the idea is that:

  • You don’t plan out the meaning of tags or even structures.
  • Instead, once the community coalesces on tags or structure to use, you explicitly “call out” that use of it.

For example, there are plenty of people who’re using the callisto tag already, both for Eclipse and the moon. By declaring that he’s using the tag to track Eclipse Callisto, Ian has added more meaning and use to that tag: in The Network mindset, when a group agrees on acting in the same way, new value. That is, a new convention is created.

From convention comes numerous useful features, primarily the efficiency of not having re-learn how to go about doing something and, to get real Astronaut, a sort of “semantic format” that can be programatically used: a microformat of behavior. Crazy! ;>

Disclaimer: Eclipse is a client.

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Categories: Collaborative, Ideas, Social Software, The New Thing.