The importance of Tags: limits on tags

I wasn’t very clear yesterday when I posted that WordPress will penalize bloggers for using too many tags. I wasn’t clear because I didn’t know what they meant. I looked into it (and got some help from Gene’O) and finally found this in the WordPress help:

“However, you don’t want irrelevant content showing up on the topic listings or search, and neither do we. That’s why we limit the number of tags and categories that can be used on a public tag listing. Five to 15 tags (or categories, or a combination of the two) is a good number to add to each of your posts. The more categories you use, the less likely it is that your post will be selected for inclusion in the topic listings.”

Here’s the link to where I found this quote:

Please note, the warning is in bold. I didn’t add it, WordPress posted it like that. Personally, I think they mean that more than 15 rags will be penalized by not including the post in searches and they want bloggers to understand the consequences (therefore the bold). I don’t think they’re very clear as to how they’re going to do that and if it’s a 15 tags you’re okay but 16 and you’re cut off (No more soup for you!—Ah…Seinfeld) and I’m too chicken to do any tests or runs and see how it works.

Using tags is completely optional. WordPress says this several times but they also encourage bloggers to use them.

“Your posts will appear in the topic listings of any tags or categories you use. Therefore, assigning tags and categories to your post increases the chance that other users will see your content.”

I think they just don’t want people to abuse the system. And that sounds fair to me. I’m still a little scared. I mean, what can they do? Could they delete someone’s blog? Or put them at the end of the search algorithms? No! Noooo!

The horror.



One more note on tags.Veda’s Blog has this great post on questions and answers about tags. Answered a lot of my questions.