Re: Meta Tag - proposal (suggestions ???)

Jon Wallis (
Thu, 16 Nov 1995 15:17:59 +0000

At 00:51 17/11/95 +1000, you wrote:
>On Thu, 16 Nov 1995, Jon Wallis wrote:
>> What about a META element for "subject classification" - using the Dewey
>> Decimal or Universal Decimal system?
>This suggestion is a bit off the mark, for a number of reasons. I work
>in a library and appreciate that what you propose, Jon would solve a lot
>of problems. Attempts in the past to get some agreement of what
>should be used for indexing and searching have not been very successful,
>mainly I suspect because the requirement has been vague and unwieldy and
>tried to encompass too much.
>There is a group of librarians in the US somewhere (I can't recall off hand)
>who have put together a list of meta data called the _Dublin Core_. It's
>just too complicated for ordinary, non librarians to handle, and even
>they need a reality check as they seem to want to re-invent marc.
>On the other hand I do not think it too much for a HTML author to
>identify and index/keyword his/her document - pretty much the same as
>printed material. Keep it simple so that authors who only need to learn
>simple HTML can management to have their documents located more easily on
>the WWW.

Yes - my view is that if someone can write HTML properly (i.e., use it
to encode the semantics of a document's structure rather than as DTP) then
they can certainly add a classmark to the document. The Web *is*
publishing, but there's no requirement to author's to supply any meta-data
about their document as is the case with some other forms of publishing.

How about somewhere becoming a "copyright library" for the Web? Web authors
would be required to supply their URL to this site, which would then
classify and catalogue the page (for fee).
<take tongue out of cheek>

>Leave cataloging to the librarians if they want to put it into a

Fair enough - I certainly wouldn't contend that classification doesn't
require a high level of skill.

Jon Wallis         Senior Lecturer in Information Systems Engineering
School of Computing & I.T., University of Wolverhampton, UK - WV1 1SB
   Personal WWW Home Page   <URL:>
     University WWW Home Page <URL:> 
-----------------"That's some catch, that catch-22"------------------