Get started as a tagger

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Harvard Open Access Project (HOAP) » Open Access Tracking Project (OATP) » Get started as a tagger

  • This page is primarily about how to start tagging for OATP. If you're undecided, please see our page on <b>why</b> to tag for OATP. If all this is new to you, see the OATP home page or FAQ.

Thanks for your willingness to help out. Quick summary:
  1. Get a TagTeam account.
  2. Get permission to tag for the OATP hub within TagTeam.
  3. Install the tagging bookmarklet on your browser.
  4. Learn the basics of OATP tagging.

Getting a TagTeam account

  1. Go to the Harvard instance of TagTeam and click the Sign in link in the upper right corner. Or go directly to the Sign up page.
  2. Fill out the form.
    • Note that the Harvard instance of TagTeam is limited to academic or research projects. Use the form to give a brief description of your project.
      • If you don't describe an academic or research project, your request for an account may be denied.
      • Tagging for OATP definitely counts as an academic or research project. Hence, if you want to tag for OATP, just say that.
    • Click the green Sign up button (not the blue Log in button).
Once you have an account in TagTeam, you may create new hubs (projects), tag for those hubs, and authorize others to tag for them as well. To tag for an existing hub, like OATP, you'll need the permission of the hub owner. (See next).
If your purpose is to tag for OATP, then please do not create a new OA-related hub. Use the OATP hub for tagging all OA-related items.

Getting permission to tag for OATP

  1. Log in to TagTeam, and go to the OATP hub.
  2. Click on the Contact tab in the left sidebar. Fill in the form, for example, by asking for permission to tag for OATP. Click Submit.
  3. The OATP hub owner will receive the message and approve you when it arrives.
When you get this far, you'll be authorized to tag for OATP. The next few sections are about how to do that.

Adding and using the tagging bookmarklet

  1. Log in to TagTeam, and go to the OATP hub.
  2. Click on the Taggers tab in the left sidebar.
  3. Drag the green Add to TagTeam button to your browser's toolbar. (You'll only see this button if you're logged in to TagTeam and authorized to tag for OATP.)
  4. Surf the web as usual. When you're viewing a web page you want to tag, click on the bookmarklet and fill in the pop-up form.
The process in a nutshell: When viewing a page you'd like to tag, click on the bookmarklet and fill in the form with relevant tags and a short excerpt or summary.

Learning about OATP tags

  • Use the primary tag ( for items that are new within the last six months, and omit it otherwise.
  • Use relevant secondary or subtopic tags. These are tags by academic field, country, region, language, or aspect of OA — basically, all tags other than On the importance of secondary tags, see the section on them in our tagging guidelines.
  • Use descriptions. These are paraphrases or quoted excerpts that help our readers see how the work is relevant to OA and decide whether to click through to the full text. For more, see the section on them in our tagging guidelines.
If you're just getting started, you can skip everything below this point. We include the extra details and suggestions below to help taggers who want to move the next level. Use them as needed, and don't let them intimidate!
Useful but less important

Revising your work

After you've tagged an item for OATP, you may want to add new tags, or modify or remove existing tags. Here's how.
  1. Log in to TagTeam, and go to the OATP hub.
  2. Go to the tag record for the item you want to update.
    • For example, run a search or scroll through the list of items until you find the one you want to update. Then click on the link in the item's title. That takes you to the tag record for that item.
  3. Click on the Filters tab in the left sidebar.
  4. Chose one of the three options (add, remove, modify a tag), and fill in the form.
    • These are called item-level filters. Note that permission to tag for a hub doesn't automatically include permission to create item-level filters. You probably have both kinds of permission. But if you don't, then ask the hub owner.
  5. Another way to add, remove, or modify tags is to return to the original page on the web, and click on the bookmarklet as if you were going to tag it again. The tagging form will pop up prepopulated with the existing tags, title, URL, and description. You can add new tags directly through the form.
    • This method also works if you want to add or modify the title or description.
Follow the same steps to revise and improve the work of other OATP taggers.
To remove an item entirely, then take the first two steps above. Look for the gear icon next to the title of each item on the list. Click on that and you'll get a pop-up menu. One of the options is to remove that item from your collection.

Recommended practices

Once you've started as a tagger, consider taking additional steps to help the project.

  • Subscribe to the OATP primary feed as a reader. This will show you what your tagging (and the tagging of your peers) looks like to our subscribers.
  • Review the OATP primary feed (all new items) or full feed (all items old and new) from within TagTeam. When you see an item that was inadequately tagged, add some of the missing tags. If you click through to the full tag record and believe that the item was inadequately described, improve the description.
    • If most of your OATP work is on OA in a given field, country, or region, or on a certain aspect of OA (such as books, copyright, data, early career researchers, funder policies...), then review and improve the item records within your areas of focus.
  • When you tag an OA-related event (conference, workshop, webinar etc.), also add it to the "Events" section of the Open Access Directory (OAD) wiki.
    • Strictly speaking, this is not part of OATP tagging. But it advances the same cause and we recommend it in the OATP tagging guidelines.
    • To prevent spam, OAD contributions are limited to registered users, but registration is free and easy.
  • Recruit new OATP taggers. When you find promising prospects, share this page on how to get started (short URL = Help them learn the basics.
    • OATP is a crowd-sourced project. The more taggers we have, the more comprehensively we can cover the scene. In September 2018 OATP entered an all-volunteer phase and now depends on people like you and those you help recruit.
    • We welcome new taggers, whether they tag regularly or sporadically, and whether they tag generally (all kinds of OA-related news, whatever they notice) or only in certain niches (by academic field, geographic region, language-group, or aspect of OA).

Tips and suggestions

  • If you click on the TagTeam bookmarklet, and the form pops up already filled in, that means that the page you're viewing has already been tagged for OATP. You could back out and move on, relieved that someone has saved you time. Or you could review the tags already applied and think about whether the previous tagger(s) omitted any that you could add now.
  • Conversely, to see whether an item has already been tagged, just try to tag it. If the form pops up pre-populated, the answer is yes.
  • The OATP tagging guidelines and list of approved tags are both fairly long and might be intimidating. But don't be intimidated. There's a learning curve, but it's not that steep.
  • Once you start tagging, you'll receive automated email feedback when other OATP taggers modify or improve on your work. In this way, all our taggers help one another.
  • If you or your organization would like to be systematic in finding and tagging new items of a certain kind, let Peter Suber know. OATP is trying to recruit taggers to take responsibility —alone or jointly— for items on a certain aspect of OA or OA developments in a certain niche (field, country, region, or language). If we get a critical mass of them, then we'll create a public web page listing them, partly to give public thanks and partly to show the areas where we still need dedicated taggers.
  • Consider creating a <i>recommendation feed</i>, that is, a feed of items that you'd personally like to highlight or recommend. If you're an expert on a certain aspect of OA, this can be very useful to readers who'd like to follow your judgment on new developments in that area.
  • If you want, Peter can send you some older items not previously tagged. Tagging them retroactively is useful to the project, but doesn't put them in the "primary" feed of new items received by subscribers. Hence, it makes a good "sandbox" or safe space for learning how to tag. Just drop Peter a line if you'd like to give this a try.
  • You might create your own hub on TagTeam, either to play with the software or to track (academic or research) on topics unrelated OA. If you do, then you'll have tagging rights in more than one hub — OATP plus your own hubs. When you tag a new item, the bookmarklet lets you choose which hub it will go to (in a pull-down menu in the upper left corner). By default new items go to the hub for which you most recently tagged.
  • Please only tag items that are on-topic. This is true for all TagTeam hubs. If you tag too many items unrelated to the hub topic, the hub owner may rescind your permission to tag for the hub. TagTeam wants to help researchers who create hubs to publish carefully curated feeds relevant to their topics.
  • Note that when you tag for a TagTeam hub, the hub owner and designated other hub participants may change your tags. This is a feature, not a bug. In fact, it's the one feature that most inspired the the creation of TagTeam, given that many platforms already existed to support basic tagging. This feature enables TagTeam projects, like OATP, to manage the evolution of a folksonomy to an ontology, or to convert uncoordinated user-defined tags to a standard vocabulary of project-approved tags.

Tagging helps every member of the global OA community stay on top of what's happening. It helps them search and share what's happening on particular subtopics, in particular fields, or in particular regions. It's easy to do. When you're comfortable with the tags, you can tag a new item in less than a minute. It's gratifying, even fun, to push OA news and comment to an active worldwide audience, and to organize OA-related developments by tag or subtopic. We'd welcome your tagging whether it's systematic or sporadic, general or specialized. Every little bit helps.