Tags vs. Categories

The distinction between tags and categories is an oft-requested point of clarification. The question has been asked at every blog workshop I’ve run, and yet for some reason I still find myself struggling to find the best way to explain it. Well no more. In the process of posting a killer new release of his blog publishing software, Daniel Jalkut lays it out for us:

One of the things that the blogging systems of the world haven’t been able to get their story straight about over the years is whether to support tags, categories, or both. What’s the difference? In a nutshell, think of categories as hierarchical categorization, and tags as more for indexing purposes. For example, the City of Lincoln and President Lincoln both deserve the tag ‘Lincoln,’ but one belongs in the category ‘Cities’ while the other belongs in ‘Presidents,’ while both belong in the category ‘America.’

Well put. By the way, if you have been waiting to take MarsEdit for a spin, now is a good time to check it out.

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