The Indexer: The International Journal of Indexing

Pictures into words

The Indexer: The International Journal of Indexing (2015), 33, (1), 8–25.

Abstract

Subject access to images is a major issue for image collections. How well does current professional indexing represent the different levels of meaning in a photograph? How do indexers go about indexing an image? The first part of this article presents the results of a study investigating how current indexing represents the subject content of historic photographs. The second part reports on how professional indexers’ representation of subject content differs from the interpretations of taggers, and suggests a practical way that indexers can work with taggers to deal with the classic problem of resource constraints to enhance subject metadata and make photo collections more accessible.

If you have private access to this content, please log in with your username and password here

Angel, C. M. (2012) A comparison of descriptive tagging practices by library, archive and museum professionals user an inter-indexing consistency approach. Columbia, S.C.: University of South Carolina. A comparison of descriptive tagging practices by library, archive and museum professionals user an inter-indexing consistency approach Google Scholar

Armitage, L. H. and Enser, P. G. B. (1997) ‘Analysis of user need in image archives.’ Journal of Information Science 23(4), 287–99. Analysis of user need in image archives Journal of Information Science 23 287 99 Google Scholar

Bachore, Z. (2012) Surreptitious, evolving and participative ontology development: an end-user oriented ontology development methodology. Baltimore County, Md.: University of Maryland. Surreptitious, evolving and participative ontology development: an end-user oriented ontology development methodology Google Scholar

Bar-Ilan, J., Zhitormirsky-Geffet, M., Miller, Y. and Shoham, S. (2010) ‘The effects of background information and social interaction on image tagging.’ Journal of the American Society for Information Science 61(5), 940–51. The effects of background information and social interaction on image tagging Journal of the American Society for Information Science 61 940 51 Google Scholar

Benson, A. C. (2011) Relationship analysis of image descriptions: an ontological, content analytic approach. Pittsburgh, Penn.: University of Pittsburgh. Relationship analysis of image descriptions: an ontological, content analytic approach Google Scholar

Betz, E. W. (1997) ‘Graphic materials – rules for describing original items and historical collections.’ www.loc.gov/rr/print/gm/GraMatWP8.pdf (accessed 25 October 2012). Google Scholar

Budd, J. M. (1995) ‘An epistemological foundation for library and information science.’ Library Quarterly 65(3), 295–318. Graphic materials – rules for describing original items and historical collections Library Quarterly 65 295 318 Google Scholar

Chung, E. and Yoon, J. (2009) ‘Categorical and specificity differences between user-supplied tags and search query terms for images: an analysis of Flickr tags and Web image search queries.’ Information Research 14. Categorical and specificity differences between user-supplied tags and search query terms for images: an analysis of Flickr tags and Web image search queries Information Research 14 Google Scholar

Enser, P. G. B. (2008) ‘The evolution of visual information retrieval.’ Journal of Information Science 34(4), 531–48. The evolution of visual information retrieval Journal of Information Science 34 531 48 Google Scholar

Godfrey, T. (1998) Conceptual art. London: Phaidon. Conceptual art Google Scholar

Golbeck, J., Koepfler, J. and Emmerling, B. (2011) ‘An experimental study of social tagging behavior and image content.’ Journal of the American Society for Information Science 62, 1750–60. An experimental study of social tagging behavior and image content Journal of the American Society for Information Science 62 1750 60 Google Scholar

Hider, P. (2012) Information resource description: creating and managing metadata. London: Facet. Information resource description: creating and managing metadata Google Scholar

Holley, R. (2010) ‘Crowdsourcing: how and why should libraries do it?’ D-Lib Magazine 16. Crowdsourcing: how and why should libraries do it? D-Lib Magazine 16 Google Scholar

Jorgensen, C. (1996) ‘Indexing images: testing an image description template’, pp. 209–13 in ASIS ‘96: Proceedings of the 59 th ASIS Annual Meeting, Baltimore, Maryland, October 21–24, 1996, Vol. 33. Medford, NJ: Information Today. Indexing images: testing an image description template ASIS ‘96: Proceedings of the 59 th ASIS Annual Meeting, Baltimore, Maryland, October 21–24, 1996 209 13 Google Scholar

Lancaster, F. W. (2003) Indexing and abstracting in theory and practice, 3rd edn. Champaign, Ill.: University of Illinois Press. Indexing and abstracting in theory and practice Google Scholar

Layne, S. S. (1994) ‘Some issues in the indexing of images.’ Journal of the American Society for Information Science 45(8), 583–8. Some issues in the indexing of images Journal of the American Society for Information Science 45 583 8 Google Scholar

Library of Congress. (1995) Thesaurus for graphic materials I: subject terms (TGM 1), Prints and Photographs Division. www.loc.gov/rr/print/tgm1/ (accessed 21 August 2012). Google Scholar

Mai, J.-E. (2005) ‘Analysis in indexing: document and domain centered approaches.’ Information Processing and Management 41, 599–611. Analysis in indexing: document and domain centered approaches Information Processing and Management 599 611 Google Scholar

Menard, E. and Smithglass, M. (2012) ‘Digital image description: a review of best practices in cultural institutions.’ Library Hi Tech 30, 291–309. Digital image description: a review of best practices in cultural institutions Library Hi Tech 30 291 309 Google Scholar

Miksa, F. (1983) The subject in the dictionary catalog from Cutter to the present. Chicago, Ill.: American Library Association. The subject in the dictionary catalog from Cutter to the present Google Scholar

Morris, E. (2007) ‘Liar, liar, pants on fire’, web log post, 10 July. http://morris.blogs.nytimes.com/2007/07/10/pictures-are-supposed-to-be-worth-a-thousandwords/ (accessed 25 September 2011). Google Scholar

O’Connor, B. C., O’Connor, M. K. and Abbas, J. M. (1999) ‘User reactions as access mechanism: an exploration based on captions for images.’ Journal of the American Society for Information Science 50(8), 681–97. Liar, liar, pants on fire Journal of the American Society for Information Science 50 681 97 Google Scholar

Oyarce, S. (2012) In pursuit of image: how we think about photographs we seek. Denton, Tex.: University of North Texas. In pursuit of image: how we think about photographs we seek Google Scholar

Panofsky, E. (1955) ‘Iconography and iconology: an introduction to the study of Renaissance art’, in Meaning in the visual arts. New York: Doubleday. Iconography and iconology: an introduction to the study of Renaissance art Meaning in the visual arts Google Scholar

Pocock, M. (2013) ‘Lusitania (1907)’, Maritime Quest. www.maritimequest.com/liners/lusitania_page_3.htm (accessed 25 September 2011). Google Scholar

Ransom, N. and Rafferty, P. (2011) ‘Facets of user-assigned tags and their effectiveness in image retrieval.’ Journal of Documentation 67, 1038–66. Lusitania (1907) Journal of Documentation 67 1038 66 Google Scholar

Rorissa, A. (2010) ‘A comparative study of Flickr tags and index terms in a general index collection.’ Journal of the American Society for Information Science 61, 2230–42. A comparative study of Flickr tags and index terms in a general index collection Journal of the American Society for Information Science 61 2230 42 Google Scholar

Sauperl, A. (2002). Subject determination during the cataloguing process. Lanham, Md.: Scarecrow. Subject determination during the cataloguing process Google Scholar

Shatford, S. (1984) ‘Describing a picture: a thousand words are seldom cost effective.’ Cataloging and Classification Quarterly 4(4), 13–30. Describing a picture: a thousand words are seldom cost effective Cataloging and Classification Quarterly 4 13 30 Google Scholar

Shatford, S. (1986) ‘Analyzing the subject of a picture: a theoretical approach.’ Cataloging and Classification Quarterly 6(3), 39–62. Analyzing the subject of a picture: a theoretical approach Cataloging and Classification Quarterly 6 39 62 Google Scholar

State Library of New South Wales (2000) ‘About Australian Pictorial Thesaurus.’ www.picturethesaurus.gov.au/about.html (accessed 14 September 2010). Google Scholar

Stvilia, B. and Jorgensen, C. (2010) ‘Member activities and quality of tags in a collection of historical photographs in Flickr.’ Journal of the American Society for Information Science 61, 2477–89. About Australian Pictorial Thesaurus Journal of the American Society for Information Science 61 2477 89 Google Scholar

Svenonius, E. (2000). The intellectual foundation of information organization. Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press. The intellectual foundation of information organization Google Scholar

Trant, J. (2006) ‘Exploring the potential for social tagging and folksonomy in art museums: proof of concept.’ New Review of Hypermedia and Multimedia 12(1), 83–105. Exploring the potential for social tagging and folksonomy in art museums: proof of concept New Review of Hypermedia and Multimedia 12 83 105 Google Scholar

Trant, J. (2009) ‘Studying social tagging and folksonomy: a review and framework.’ Journal of Digital Information 10(1). Studying social tagging and folksonomy: a review and framework Journal of Digital Information 10 Google Scholar

Trant, J. and Bearman, D. (2007) ‘The eye of the beholder: steve. museum and social tagging of museum collections.’ Paper for the International Cultural Heritage Informatics Meeting (ICHIM07), Toronto. The eye of the beholder: steve. museum and social tagging of museum collections Google Scholar

Van Vliet, H. and Hekman, E. (2012) ‘Enhancing user involvement with digital cultural heritage: the usage of social tagging and storytelling.’ First Monday 17. Enhancing user involvement with digital cultural heritage: the usage of social tagging and storytelling First Monday 17 Google Scholar

Yoon, J. (2009) ‘Towards a user-oriented thesaurus for nondomain specific image collections.’ Information Processing and Management 45, 452–68. Towards a user-oriented thesaurus for nondomain specific image collections Information Processing and Management 45 452 68 Google Scholar

If you have private access to this content, please log in with your username and password here

Details

Author details

Stewart, Brian