Retiring MTagger

MTagger, the University Library's social bookmarking tool, has been turned off, having been replaced by the new MLibrary Favorites tool. We launched MTagger in early 2008 as a way to allow site visitors to save library resources (web pages, items in the catalog, etc.) for future use. (For more information about the tool, please see "MTagger Update.") MTagger was modeled after popular Internet tools such as Delicious. Once someone saved a page and added one or more tags (labels), these tags would then be shown on the item. Each tag linked to every item that shared that tag (regardless of who applied it), allowing future visitors to explore other resources.

Sample MTagger tag cloud

MTagger Tag Cloud

In addition to public "tagging" of items, we also used MTagger as the storehouse for items saved as a "favorite" in the library catalog. A favorite is distinct from a tagged item in that favorites are personal and private, accessible only to the individual who saved them. For example, if I had "tagged" the catalog record for a particular book, my tag would have appeared for all users in the tag cloud. Anyone could have clicked it, seen what else might have been identically tagged (by me or by others), explored other items that I had tagged, or other tags that I had used. By contrast, an item that I marked as a favorite was available only to me. Using MTagger was an inherently public act; using favorites is inherently private.

Usage patterns over the four and a half years that MTagger was part of our web site show a clear preference for "favoriting" items rather than tagging them. Of the total number of MTagger users and items, items saved through the catalog's favorites mechanism are the overwhelming majority (the "favorites" function in the catalog is a bit newer than MTagger, having been launched in the second half of 2009). MTagger's usage stats can be summarized as follows:

Measure Total Number
MTagger & Favorites
Created through Favorites Percentage
From Favorites
Distinct users 8,300 > 7,000 > 75%
Items tagged 88,000 > 72,000 > 80%
Tags used 9,300 N/A N/A

Retiring MTagger, Launching MLibrary Favorites

We have now completely retired MTagger. The tag cloud has been removed from the web site, catalog, and DLPS image collections. The new Favorites tool is more closely integrated with the resources that were used most frequently in MTagger (the catalog and Search Tools), and focuses on resources over which the library has control. To learn more about MLibrary Favorites, read the MLibrary Favorites post in this blog.

If you have questions, please contact Library Web Systems.


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