A folksonomy is a system of indexing your online content (web pages, blog posts, photos and so on) based on a free choice of keywords or tags. It’s another of those terms that’s a composite of two existing words : “folk” and “taxonomy” (which is the science of classification). It goes against the established grain of expert classification systems (hence the “folk”), in that ordinary people decide how blogs and websites should be classified, and which key words or tags to use with them. Take MyNetWords as an example : you might classify it under “dictionary”, while someone else would put it under “web critic’s blog” or even “LOL website”.
There are two advantages to a folksonomy. Theoretically, you are more likely to be able to retrieve a piece of information (a file) in your personal online storage system if you have filed it according to a system you devised yourself. Also, you will be able to share your “archived resources” with other internet users. You can do this by filing or indexing the material on one of the dedicated “bookmarking” sites or blogs, such as Delicious. Sites of this type are in fact based on a system of folksonomy. You go to the website, find the blog you want, and file it under a key word, “dictionary” for example, which enables you to find it again easily, and share it with other members of Delicious. A member of Delicious can then type “dictionary” and find all the blogs and websites filed under that key word – including, naturally, MyNetWords.
The term “folksonomy” is starting to become more established, though other terms are sometimes used, such as “popular indexing”, “cooperative classification” or “grassroots classification”.