Friday, May 25, 2007

David Weinberger :: Metacrap and Flickr Tags: An Interview with Cory Doctorow

Originally posted on David Weinberger’s Wired News Podcast on May 3, 2007.

In this new series, which is cosponsored by Wired News and the Harvard Berkman Center for the Internet and Society, David Weinberger, author of the new book Everything Is Miscellaneous, talks with some of the leading businesspeople, scientists, and thinkers who are coming up with innovative new ways of putting ideas, information and knowledge together. Now that the digital age has blown apart traditional ways of organizing information, what’s next? Suddenly, everything is miscellaneous.

David kicks off the series by interviewing novelist, BoingBoing co-editor, digital rights activist and entrepreneur Cory Doctorow. For Cory, piling up information without strict organizational rules can be workable provided that we have sufficiently reliable metadata. The problem is that people don’t all use metadata the same way or use tags consistently, and that can be a real obstacle to making coherent sense of piles of information.

David and Cory discuss the advantages and pitfalls of explicit and implicit metadata, tags and the rules governing the use and re-use of content in commerce and culture.