On Tags: a Metadiscussion

I recently found out that WordPress didn’t publicize most of my old blog’s posts because I had in excess of fifteen tags on many of them. Their reasons were good: they were trying to keep people from abusing the tag-system to get more hits.  When I signed up I likely saw that rule and ignored it.  I doubt very many people have searches set for ‘Disparate Liquids Bottled Together,’ or ‘This Entry is a Rejected Magazine Article,’ and that isn’t why I used them.  I used them for internal searches and a way to tease out the queer little themes, and serendipitous coincidences, that keep popping up.

I am less of an SEO-hit-type of guy than I probably should be; moreover, I like the idea of lots tags as a guide linking totally heterogeneous materials. Although this is a blog about my writing, it has (or it will have) all kinds of other things in it as well.  I liked the idea of someone clicking on the ‘In My Snot-Nosed Youth’ and coming up with a bunch of things with nothing in common, except an odd reference to the time between 1978 and 1990.

So I have decided that from now on I will only put a handful of tags on the official list and add the other tags to the bottom of the page, to be added later, if I get around to it.

Indexing is a strange art, and categories have always made me uncomfortable, and this is one of the few ways I have to impose chaos on the world.

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