Overall, tags are used to categorize topics. They can be used both to find and filter out topics with a particular tag. You can often think of them as a "lighter" form of a sub-group. For example, a post in ~music with the tag
pop would also be appropriate to be posted in ~music.pop if that group existed.
Tags can be made up of ASCII letters, numbers, and spaces (or underscores, which are treated as spaces).
Similar to groups, tags also support a hierarchy by separating "sections" with periods. For example, tagging something with
rock.progressive will cause it to still be treated as though it has a
rock tag (being found in searches and affected by filters), but is more specific and could allow more detailed filtering/searching.
General tagging guidance
Since tags are used for searching and filtering, try to think about how other users would want to find or filter out the topic you're tagging. For example, when tagging a post about a video game, it can be useful to include tags for the platform the game is on, as well as the game's genre.
Tags should generally be plural (when that makes sense). This is easiest to think of as a parallel to sub-groups—if there was a group for discussing watches it would probably be called ~hobbies.watches and not ~hobby.watch, so the correct tag for a post about a watch would be
Don't add a tag that's the same or very similar to the group that you're posting in. There's no need to add a
music tag to posts in ~music, or
technology tag to posts in ~tech.
ask tag should be used when the topic's purpose is to request information from other Tildes users (as opposed to the topic itself being informational). You should also usually add a second tag to specify what sort of request it is. Some of the common ones are:
help- Requests for help with something, where there's probably a correct answer or resolution. This could include tech support, "how do I do X?", and so on.
recommendations- Requests for recommendations or suggestions (of music, books, games, etc.), where there's not a true "answer".
survey- Questions asking about other users' personal choices or situations, such as "What's your favorite X?", "Which Y do you use?", etc.
If the topic is mostly relevant to a particular country (probably most common for posts in ~news), please tag it with the name of that country. Don't use the nationality or other similar terms—that is, the tag should be
germany and not
For the United States of America, use the tag
united states, etc.).