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Hashtags - The Way XenForo Would Handle Content Tagging

Discussion in 'XenForo Suggestions' started by Divvens, Jul 9, 2013.

  1. Divvens

    Divvens Well-Known Member

    As per a discussion here, I decided to make this suggestion thread for hashtags.

    What are hashtags?
    Users who use twitter may know a lot about #hashtags, it has recently been added as a feature in Facebook as well. "Hashtags" are content tags, that can be clicked upon to view more content of similar nature. For example, if I were to add a hashtag #XenforoNews, it would turn into a hyperlink and can be clicked upon to see all content containing the same hashtag.

    How is it useful?
    Many communities are more than just a "community", they provide resources, articles of various kinds, news and information, products or even talk about everything under the sun. These forums always look for "organization" of content, most prefer using "tags" that can be added and auto-linked so that users can find similar content or it can be searched for easily.

    Hashtags make it easier, by making it inline, you do not need to do anything or add any tags after the thread/content is created, and hashtags can be used in threads, replies (posts), member profile updates etc making it easier to organize content of the same type. This feature can be useful to communities/forums that provide news/information or even general communities for better organization and a bit more #fun.

    Hashtagging is #useless
    Many people may have this opinion, since some twitter users did make the hashtag look that way, but we cannot hate an idea just due to a certain few can we? Imagine, XenForo having its own hashtag system, similar to the user @ tag, it's going to make it more engaging and social, better to organize content, better to search for relevant content etc. And I'm pretty sure this will please everyone looking for a content tagging system. Maybe an official sidebar block to show the hashtag cloud? Wouldn't it be sweet?

    Others may have even better ideas than me to make use of the hashtag, please feel free to share your opinions and if you feel this feature should make it into #xenForo core.

    Edit: More Ideas (and future ideas) to improve upon base suggestion:

    Users can "watch" hashtags and be alerted for new content containing that hashtag
    Once you click on a hashtag, it takes you to a search like page where all content with that hashtag is displayed. You have an option to "watch" the hashtag, and be notified via Alerts/E-Mail when new content is created with that "hashtag", alert options can be set to alert for "threads", alert for "posts" containing hashtag, or alert for both.
     
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2013
    Dadparvar, dieketzer, Hoffi and 28 others like this.
  2. The Dark Wizard

    The Dark Wizard Well-Known Member

    This seems so useful to us as a writing site. Yes please.
     
    Divvens likes this.
  3. Jeremy

    Jeremy XenForo Moderator Staff Member

    Personally, I'm not a fan. And I'm dreading when my friends actually start using them on Facebook to make all their statuses unreadable to me. I think I'd be OK with a per-post tagging system (so you could add tags to the actual post versus full thread) that isn't inline tho.
     
  4. Divvens

    Divvens Well-Known Member

    Problem is, if it isn't inline many will be lazy or overlook it, it can be a nuisance on sites like Facebook and/or Twitter, but forum crowd are more mature in general (no hating, just stating my opinion). And hashtags have been made popular so majority of the internet crowd has an idea about it + ease of use will encourage users to tag, which will benefit the community as a whole.
     
  5. Martok

    Martok Well-Known Member

    I'm not convinced that hashtagging is needed. I can see it's purpose on Twitter and Facebook where searching is much more basic and tweets/status updates are all individual things. On forums posts are part of threads which are within forum sections and Xenforo has a much better search facility.
     
  6. Brogan

    Brogan XenForo Moderator Staff Member

    #notsureaboutthis #couldbeaninterestingidea #onthefence
     
    Big Dan, RobinHood, Andrej and 8 others like this.
  7. Jeremy

    Jeremy XenForo Moderator Staff Member

    No offense taken. I can see it being inline to add, but not displayed. Possibly something like:

    (and I totally paused every time there is a # in there, which is why I hate it)

    And have it turn into something like:
    with this at the bottom:
    Screen Shot 2013-07-09 at 2.21.46 PM.png


    ^ Prime example as why I am not a fan of hash tags ^
     
    melbo, Alfa1, Andrej and 3 others like this.
  8. The Dark Wizard

    The Dark Wizard Well-Known Member

    #iseewhatyoudidthere #broganstrikesagain #thereturnofbrogan2nowintheatresnearyou
     
  9. Divvens

    Divvens Well-Known Member

    That could work out well, instead of having the hashtags show up as actual tags on the post, it shows up like tags as you showed in your screenshot. Would stop useless hashtagging to a certain extent for those annoyed by it.

    Maybe have ACP options for max-tagging per post, so that entire post content isn't made up with tags, also other ACP options to help it serve its purpose properly :p
     
    FredC likes this.
  10. Martok

    Martok Well-Known Member

    #ireallyhatehowsomehashtagsusemultiplewordswithnospacingandusuallynocapitallettersitmakesitdifficulttoreadandisntgreatwhenyourediscouragingtextspeakonyourforumbutmaybeimjustagrumpygit
     
  11. Jeremy

    Jeremy XenForo Moderator Staff Member

    Basically, I hate inline hash tags for the reason of it breaking up the flow of how I read a post, and as @Brogan, @Martok, and @The Dark Wizard have shown, it leads to no spaces or bad grammar, capitalization, etc. to get a hash tag to be there. (Which is also the reason I'll be removing the @ symbol from displaying with tags)
     
  12. Shelley

    Shelley Well-Known Member

    #hmmmmmmmmmm
     
  13. Divvens

    Divvens Well-Known Member

    What if XenForo did it better? Allowed hashtagging to work with spaces but hmm, how'd it not hash tag the whole post then...Well it's a thought (albeit a flawed one).

    We can have an option of "max tag length" to avoid ultra super duper long tags. And yes, it does lead to bad grammar at times.

    But it'll be a change from the general tagging features all forums provide, and hashtagging add's ease of use. I, never really cared much about tagging in vBulletin, just because it wasn't so "visible" or used much, but hashtagging could work well, engaging user from one thing to search for more similar content with one click and stay on your site longer.

    It has good and bad both yes, I guess hashtagging has a bad reputation due to a lot of FB and Twitter tag abuse, but I have hopes that if it is implement, Mike and Kier will implement it in a creative way as they always implement new features.
     
    Kintaro likes this.
  14. Jeremy

    Jeremy XenForo Moderator Staff Member

    @Divvens, I'm not saying I'm against adding the feature, especially if a decent amount of support for it is here. I'll disable it unless it flows and works rather decently. Its better to discuss these issues now, then have backlash / debates post-implementation, since its less likely to get a major change.
     
    Divvens likes this.
  15. Divvens

    Divvens Well-Known Member

    I understand @King Kovifor, it's always good to discuss things before hand. I do the same on my community, even though sometimes discussions can get heated, discussions are always good for any community :p

    I am trying to see both sides, of how it can just be useful and a pain. Well, we can think about this and keep discussing to make the idea better. I just got another idea, with the awesome xenForo system and hashtagging, I'll add it to the first post as well.

    Users can "watch" hashtags and be alerted for new content containing that hashtag
    Once you click on a hashtag, it takes you to a search like page where all content with that hashtag is displayed. You have an option to "watch" the hashtag, and be notified via Alerts/E-Mail when new content is created with that "hashtag", alert options can be set to alert for "threads", alert for "posts" containing hashtag, or alert for both.
     
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2013
  16. Jeremy

    Jeremy XenForo Moderator Staff Member

    Following a hash tag would be watching a hash tag in proper XenForo terms. ;) If Kier and Mike can find a way that works without making it intrusive for reading and making it intuitive to use it, I'm all for it. However, I will most likely disable it on any forum I run.
     
    Divvens likes this.
  17. AndyB

    AndyB Well-Known Member

    I think using the Search is much better way of finding content.
     
  18. Divvens

    Divvens Well-Known Member

    Then, would you be against a content tagging feature in general? Not hashtags but proper tagging system.

    Yes, "Watching" :p
     
    Jeremy likes this.
  19. AndyB

    AndyB Well-Known Member

    I dislike the idea of a general tagging system as much as hashtags. The best way to find content is to use the Search IMHO.
     
  20. Divvens

    Divvens Well-Known Member

    Tagging helps a lot in organization, and to interlink content. Just search cannot interlink content.

    How many users actually use search in a forum type environment? We see a basic example on xenForo company forum itself. Let me just use a small example;

    Scenario One
    1. User lands on a page from search engine (Google).
    2. User finds content interesting.
    3. Will user use the "search" function to find more content of similar type? Is that userfriendly and does it interlink content?

    Scenario Two
    1. User lands on a page from search engine (Google).
    2. User finds content interesting.
    3. User notices tags/hashtags, user clicks and finds all interlinked content.
    4. User is happy, spends more time on site and can eventually convert to a member.

    I am looking at it from the user friendly point of view, tagging content in general works very well for most communities (unless they are strictly related to one topic). Finding content via search for existing members/long time forum users is good, but how do you expect a non-registered member (whom you want to convert into a member, after all that is our goal right?) to use search? Very less will opt for that method, instead if they are given an easy one click option, many stay on the site for longer periods of time viewing your content.
     

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