Blog of Wade Making Connexions

Tag Based Access Control

Tags are considered “an important feature of many Web 2.0 services”. Anything content related is bound to have tagging facilities embedded. Yet, when it comes to granting access to published content, we are stuck with archaic, pre-web controls 1.

We are forced to squish people into access boxes. People nearly always have overlap, again, Reality is not clearly defined. An example in reality, I work with a friend, we sometimes hang out, and we chat about the internet. Where does he belong in? Work, Friend, Hangout/Dinner Party, Internet Discussions?

Why are we limit to just one of these options? A result of not having granular access controls, is we end up self-censoring. When we self-censor, part of us is condemned to death. We stop that part of us from living and being expressed, we shut it down, saying it doesn’t belong. The reverse is true, every part of our being belong, it’s the inability to handle dynamic personalities and relations that don’t belong.

The effectiveness of tagging for things is well established, why not extend it to people? The same requirement exists.

  1. Twitter uses Public / Private.
    Flickr uses Public / Friend / Family

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