toread, howto, and Intentions

Anil Dash raised an interesting point about the human nature of tagging in a
post titled, “toread is tobehuman” where he reflects on the optimism shown by
people who tag items with the toread tag.

toread is

The most profound, to me, is the tag “toread”. Though sometimes
used as a public indicator with the knowledge that others can see this
declaration of intent, toread is usually a simple reminder that the tagger wants
to come back to that story, that article, that bit of information, and give it
the attention and focus that it deserves.

As he mentions, this
is generally content that deserves attention, making it interesting – yet
sometimes long – content. Examples of this could be long lists of
self-improvement tips or tutorials. Or manifestos on important issues by
influential bloggers.

For those not familiar with the “toread” tag,
click here to
see a list of web pages that have been tagged with that term on The resulting
pages are things people like found interesting but couldn’t commit to reading at
the time they discovered them.

Other tag along this same line is
“howto” which tends
to aggregate tutorials ranging from checklists of blogging tips to instructions
on how to wake up without an alarm clock. To me, this provides similar optimism
as people are noting information that will help them live more successful and
interesting lives.

Both tags do something other than describing the information directly, the way a
tag for “blogging” or “php” may do. Instead, the tags refer to how people relate
to the information. Do you know of any other examples of this?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.