When the need for a taxonomy arises, often the question is asked “Why not just use social tags (or folksonomies) instead?” Folksonomies can be useful but are not a total replacement for a managed taxonomy. We’ll go through the pros and cons of folksonomies along with videos on some helpful how-to videos.
The advantages and disadvantages of folksonomies and taxonomies
Folksonomies, (unmanaged, or user submitted terms; keywords as they are known in the SharePoint 2010 Term Store) have two distinct advantages: a) they can be added as quickly as users need them and b) they can be great tools for social discovery. Folksonomies also have serious pitfalls stemming from the lack of vocabulary control. This can result in: ambiguous, erroneous and redundant keywords.
Managed taxonomies, on the other hand, are designed to provide the optimal experience for all stakeholders. The development of governance, processes and procedures can take time. And once the taxonomy is in place, maintenance and deployment of improvements may take time. Is there a way you can reap the quality of a taxonomy and the social discovery benefits of a folksonomy?
In SharePoint 2010, taxonomies and folksonomies can coexist
Luckily, SharePoint 2010 lets you have your cake and eat it too. It allows you to control your folksonomies by monitoring user-submitted keywords. By doing so, you can chose to promote the to your managed taxonomy, or you can untag or delete problematic keywords.
Promoting user-submitted keywords to managed terms
Managing user-submitted keywords