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Tag-me Plugin

Plugin to tag wiki content collectively or authoritatively in order to make it easier to find content and to get a meaningful page ranking.


The larger a TWiki installation gets, the harder it becomes to find content. Even in a single web, if it has many topics, it may be difficult to keep the webcontent well organized and easy to navigate.

Meanwhile, intranet search does not work well due to inadequate ranking of search engines on intranets. This is because there are typically not many cross-links between pages.

Given the challenge, this plugin provides a tagging capability to TWiki.

There are clear benefits in tagging content in a large TWiki (10K or more topics):

Single v.s. multiple tag namespaces

By default, there is only one tag namespace - all webs share a single tag set. If $TWiki::cfg{TagMePlugin}{SplitSpace} is set to 1, each top level web has its own tag namespace, which is shared by its subwebs. This is not the case on this TWiki installation. Switching between single tag namespace and multiple namespaces takes some effort, you should understand the consequences and set the appropriate value for your installation.

If UserSubwebs are in effect (this is not the case on this installation), each user subweb has its own tag name space, which is shared by its subwebs, provided that multiple tag namespaces are in effect.

User conscious v.s. user agnostic tagging

There are two modes of tagging - user conscious tagging and user agnostic tagging.

Under user conscious tagging:

It is used as follows.

Under user agnostic tagging:

You may not like the "democratic" nature of user conscious tagging. As the owner of a web, you may want total control over what tags topics in the web have. That is achieved by user agnostic tagging if you restrict tagging.

By default, the plugin works in the user conscious tagging mode. If you set $TWiki::cfg{TagMePlugin}{UserAgnostic} 1, user agnostic tagging is used.

If there is only one tag namespace (the default setting), user conscious or user agnostic is a global setting. You cannot set one web user conscious tagging while another web user agnostic. This is because under single tag namespace, tag search is global - all webs are subject to tag search. User conscious tagging and user agnostic tagging are semantically different. Different things should not be mixed together.

If multiple tag namespaces are there, each top level web can choose user conscious or user agnostic tagging by setting TAGMEPLUGIN_USER_AGNOSTIC_TAGGING preferences variable on or off on the WebPreferences topic. The default tagging mode is specified by $TWiki::cfg{TagMePlugin}{UserAgnostic}.

Please note that setting TAGMEPLUGIN_USER_AGNOSTIC_TAGGING on the TWikiPreferences topic doesn't have the effect.


Who can add/delete/rename tags in the tag set

The plug-in maintains a set of tags. Only tags in the tag set can be added to a topic. By default, any authenticated user can add/delete/rename tags in the tag set. But you may want to restrict who can modify the tag set.

DENY_TAG_CHANGE and ALLOW_TAG_CHANGE, which are supposed to be set and finalized in TWikiPreferences, restrict users who can modify the tag set. The way they work is similar to other access control variables DENY* and ALLOW*. You can find out the details of TWiki's access control at TWiki.TWikiAccessControl.

Under multiple tag namespaces, DENY_TAG_CHANGE and ALLOW_TAG_CHANGE need to be set at the web level. Those variables set at the TWiki installation level don't take effect.

Just like TWikiAdminGroup members can view/update/delete any topic regardless of access restriction, they can add/delete/rename tags regardless of DENY_TAG_CHANGE and ALLOW_TAG_CHANGE.

Who can tag

You may want to restrict who can put/remove tags to/from topics. Please note that whether you can add/delete/rename tags in the tag set (tag change permission) and whether you can put/remove tags to/from a topic (tagging permmision) are two different things. Tagging permission is set by the following preference variables.

If none of above is set, a user who can change a topic can put/remove tags to/from the topic.

Even if a user is denied tagging by the logic above, if the user has tag change permission, the user is allowed to put/remove tags to/from a topic. This may sound odd. The reason behind this is as follows.

For these, if you can change the tag set but you cannot put/remove tags, it's strange.

As you can imagine, TWikiAdminGroup members can tag any topic regardless of access restriction.

Behavior on a read-only web

If ReadOnlyAndMirrorWebs is in use, some webs are read-only. This plug-in supports read-only webs. On a read-only web, tags are displayed but cannot be manipulated.

User Interface

Tag list on topic

Every topic has a list showing all tags associated with the topic. Additional tags can be added to the topic, and new tags can be created.

Default "twiki" style

Screenshot of tags shown on a topic:

Screenshot of tags on a topic

You see:

"blog" style

But the same control can have a different look and feel if we specify style="blog". In view mode it has a terse apperance:

Screenshot of tags on a topic, style=blog

But, if you click on Tags, and that you have an account and can edit tags, you will see:

Screenshot of tags on a topic, style=blog

In this style, you can define tag bundles - bundles are groups of tags that are presented as menus for convenience. It is a list of space-separated (or comma-separated if your tags may contain spaces) prefixed by bundle labels terminated by colon (":"). e.g:

Tags in bundes need to be valid - simply putting a tag in a bundle doesn't make it valid. You need to create it on TagMeCreateNewTag before putting a tag in a bundle.

TAGMEPLUGIN_BUNDLES is a preferences variable and you can set its value at the installation level, the web level, or the topic level.

Create, rename, delete, list, search tags

There are topics for various tag operations as shown below. Links to those topics are provided from various places off the shelf. Things are supposed to just work without doing anything special. So this part of this topic is to inform you what topics are there for tag manipulation rather than how to set things up.

Operation Topic name
Creation TagMeCreateNewTag
Rename TagMeRenameTag
Deletion TagMeDeleteTag
Listing TagMeViewAllTags, TagMeViewMyTags
Search TagMeSearch

The TWiki web has all of those topics. And the _default template web has all of those topics now, but not in the past. Lack of those topics in each web is not an issue under single tag namespace since only those topics in the TWiki web are referred to. All tag operations are done on those topics in the TWiki web.

If you employ multiple tag namespaces, each top level web needs those topics to manipulate tags in the web, hence you may need to copy those topics from the _default web.

Create, rename, delete tags programmatically

You may want to do tag creation, rename, deletion programatically. Maybe needless to say, you can do that by mimicking form submission from those pages.

Topic name Form parameter
TagMeCreateNewTag createtag=my+tag+name
TagMeRenameTag renametagfrom=my+old+tag+name
and renametagto=my+new+tag+name
TagMeDeleteTag deletetag=my+tag+name

List tags

TagMeViewAllTags shows all tags either in the TWiki installation (if there is only one tag namespace) or in the current top level web (if each top level web has its tag namespace). The font size indicates the overall tag count of a tag.

Screenshot of tag cloud in the list all tags view:

Screenshot of view all tags tag cloud

TIP Tip: In a WebHome of a web you can show a tag cloud of all tagged topics in that web with this variable:

<div class="tagmeTagCloud" style="line-height:2em;">
%TAGME{ tpaction="showalltags" format="<a href=\"%SCRIPTURL{view}%/%SYSTEMWEB%/TagMeSearch?tag=$tag\" style=\"font-size:$size%\">$tag</a>" separator="&nbsp; " minsize="94" maxsize="220"}%

If user conscious tagging is in effect, TagMeViewMyTags shows all tags used by the logged-in user. The font size indicates the overall tag count of a tag. Under user agnostic tagging, TagMeViewMyTags shows the same result as TagMeViewAllTags.

Tag search

TagMeSearch shows a list of topics that are tagged with all of the selected tags, sorted by relevance. Topics with a high tag count are shown first.

Plugin variables


Various tag operations are provided through the %TAGME{}% variable. The tpaction="" parameter is required.


%TAGMEPLUGIN_USER_AGNOSTIC% (without _TAGGING)is expanded to off if the current web employs user conscious tagging. It's expanded to on if the current web employs user agnostic tagging.

This variable is for reading, not for setting whereas TAGMEPLUGIN_USER_AGNOSTIC_TAGGING (with _TAGGING) is for setting.


%TAGMEPLUGIN_USER_AGNOSTIC_TAGGING% is referred to by the plugin code only if multiple tag namespaces are there. This is to override the installation-wide default of user conscious tagging or user agnostic tagging. The installation-wide default is specified by $TWiki::cfg{TagMePlugin}{UserAgnostic}.

How to put tags on every page

To show the tag interface at the top of the page directly below the breadcrumb (like on, use the default template view.tagme.tmpl in the templates directory.

This template is in fact a 'skin' template. To enable it, write in Public.TWikiPreferences:

   * Set SKIN = tagme,pattern
The list of skins can be appended, for instance: tagme,corporate,pattern.

For the "blog" style, use for a simple "Tags: list-of-tags (edit)" at the top of the page:

   * Set SKIN = tagme_styleblog,pattern
And for an alternate style, with no tags line shown if no tags exists, and the button to open the tag edit frame placed at the right of the Edit and Attach ones, in the same style, on the upper right:
   * Set SKIN = tagme_styleblogbutton,pattern

For TWiki 4.1, use:
   * Set SKIN = tagme04x01,pattern

Customizing the appearance

If you customize your site you probably want to change overall appearance. You can find instructions how to do that - at least for default pattern skin - in TWiki.PatternSkinCssCookbook.
The short summary is:

Other places for the tag interface

To show the tags in the top bar, edit TWiki.WebTopBar and copy:

<div class="tagmetags">
Tags: %TAGME{ tpaction="%URLPARAM{tpaction}%" web="%WEB%" tag="%URLPARAM{tag}%" }%, [[%SYSTEMWEB%.TagMeViewAllTags][view all tags]]

To show the tags at the bottom of every page, write in Public.TWikiPreferences assuming the skin's view template has %WEBCOPYRIGHT% at the bottom:

 * Set WEBCOPYRIGHT = Tags: %TAGME{ tpaction="%URLPARAM{tpaction}%" web="%WEB%" tag="%URLPARAM{tag}%" }%, [[%SYSTEMWEB%.TagMeViewAllTags][view all tags]] %BR% Copyright &copy; 1999-%GMTIME{"$year"}% by... etc

Show tags without vote buttons

To just show the tags for a topic, without buttons or "Create new tag" link, use a showalltags search:

Tags: %TAGME{ tpaction="showalltags" web="%WEB%" topic="%TOPIC%" format="<a href=\"%SCRIPTURL{view}%/%SYSTEMWEB%/TagMeSearch?tag=$tag\">$tag</a> " }%

Tag styles

CSS Styles

TagMePlugin writes the following CSS styles:

Class Used where
tagMeControl Around 'tags shown on a topic': tag link plus vote counter plus add/vote button
tagMeVoteCount Around vote count number
tagMeNotification span: One-line notification feedback after adding or removal of a tag and on in this process
tagMeNotification div: Block of notification feedback after creation of a tag and on errors in this process
tagmeAction Link style for buttons add and remove tag vote
tagmeNavigation Table style for tabbed admin pages

Search results CSS Styles

Class Used where
tagmeRelated Text style of the line "Related tags (Click to refine the search)"
tagmeResultsTable Table style for search results
tagmeResultsTableHeader Table header with link to topic, last modified date and author. These have the additional classes td.tagmeTopicTd, td.tagmeDateTd, td.tagmeAuthorTd, tagmeTopicTdWeb
tagmeResultsDetails Wrapper around tagmeResultsSummary and tagmeResultsDetails
tagmeResultsSummary The topic summary
tagmeResultsTags List of tags for the topic

Preventing link wrap

If users are allowed to use spaces in their tag names (when {TagMePlugin}{NormalizeTagInput} is set to 0), tag links may break halfway to the next line. To prevent wrapping, add a wrapper div around the tags:

<div class="tagmeTagCloud">
%TAGME{ ... }%

This CSS style is included in tagme.css:

.tagmeTagCloud a {

Example styles used on

To show the 'tags shown on a topic':

<div class="tagmetags">
Tags: %TAGME{ tpaction="%URLPARAM{tpaction}%" web="%WEB%" tag="%URLPARAM{tag}%" }%, [[%SYSTEMWEB%.TagMeViewAllTags][view all tags]]

CSS styles:

.tagmetags select {
   margin:0 .25em;
.tagmetags a {
.tagmetags a:link,
.tagmetags a:visited {
   color:#8E9195; /* all links are gray; for blue links use: #06c */
.tagmetags a:hover {
.tagMeControl {
   color:#8E9195; /* gray for non-links */

Plugin Settings

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Configuration parameters

The TagMePlugin has the following settings in LocalSite.cfg.

Switching SplitNamespace and/or UserAgnostic

You may change {TagMePlugin}{SplitSpace} or {TagMePlugin}{UserAgnostic} after using TagMePlugin for a while. This is not recommended, but you may need to do that. So here's how you can deal with it.

Switching SplitNamespace

If {TagMePlugin}{SplitSpace} is 0, all tag data, namely the tag set and which topic has which tags put by whom, is stored in the following directory:

If the directory there are two kinds of files:

If {TagMePlugin}{SplitSpace} is 1, tag data is stored in the pub directories of top level webs under the .tags subdirectory. For example, WebA's tag data is stored in pub/WebA/.tags, WebB's tag data is stored in pub/WebB/.tags, etc. Tag data file names and content are the same as they are under single tag namespace configuration.

As you see, under the multiple tag namespace configuration, tag data is not stored under $TWiki::cfg{WorkingDir}. Instead, it's stored under pub/WEB_NAME. This is to mirror a web simply by mirroring data/WEB_NAME and pub/WEB_NAME.

If you change {TagMePlugin}{SplitSpace} from 0 to 1, all webs become unable to see existing tag data since they refer to their own tag data, which is empty immediately after the switch. There is no ready-made tool, but it's easy to move/copy tag data files from $TWiki::cfg{WorkingDir}/work_areas/TagMePlugin to pub/WEB_NAME/.tags.

The amount of information-wise, single tag namespace and mutliple tag namespaces are not different. Though cumbersome, you can go back and force without losing information.

Switching UserAgnostic

If {TagMePlugin}{UserAgnostic} is 0, tagging data in _tags_WEB.TOPIC.txt consists of lines for tags put to the topic. For example, if the user john (login name) put the tag foo, the file gets the following line.

001, foo, john
Then if the user jane put the tag foo, the line becomes as follows.
002, foo, john, jane

Even if {TagMePlugin}{UserAgnostic} is 1, the tagging data file format remains the same. The difference is, when the tagging data file is read, each line is recognized as:


This means, if you switch {TagMePlugin}{UserAgnostic} from 0 to 1, all tags put by anybody are recognized as yours. Due to the way showing tags in user agnostic tagging, those tags are displayed as expected.

A tagging data file remains as it is unless a tag is added or removed. Then, the file is filled with lines of the following format.

And the information of who put which tag is lost.

Obviously, user conscious tagging houses more information than user agnostic tagging. So switching from user conscious to user agnostic has no problem. But the other way around causes a weird situation - all tags put to the topic A is by the user U while the topic B has tags tags put only by the user V.

Plugin Installation Instructions

This plugin is pre-installed. TWiki administrators can upgrade the plugin as needed on the TWiki server.

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Plugin Info

Plugin Author: TWiki:Main.PeterThoeny, TWiki:Main.ArthurClemens
Copyright: © 2006-2013 Peter Thoeny, External link mark;
© 2006-2013 TWiki:TWiki.TWikiContributor
License: GPL (GNU General Public License External link mark)
Plugin Version: 2014-05-15
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2014-05-15: TWikibug:Item7492: Hide tags in print using hideInPrint CSS class (requires PatternSkin 2014-05-15)
2013-10-24: Twikibug:Item7375: bug fixes, document improvement, code cleanup
2013-10-23: Twikibug:Item6816: tag add/delete/rename permission bug fixed
2013-04-18: TWikibug:Item7234: Problems when {TagMePlugin}{SplitSpace} is true
2013-04-11: TWikibug:Item7224: Using TWiki::Func::isAnAdmin() instead of non existing TWiki::Access::isAdminOrWebAdmin()
2013-03-12: TWikibug:Item7185: Rename $TWiki::cfg{PersonalWebName} to $TWiki::cfg{UsersWebName}
2013-01-28: TWikibug:Item7091: Use TWISTY in installation instructions and change history
2012-12-03: TWikibug:Item7034: Multiple tag namespaces support. -- TWiki:Main.YaojunFei
2012-09-04: TWikibug:Item6923: Nicer reporting pages with gray gradient tabs
2011-07-12: TWikibug:Item6768: Allow login name or WikiWord name for by="" tag queries; user specific "no tag yet" message if by user is not logged in user
2011-05-25: TWikibug:Item6732: Fix for administrator not able to delete tag if Main web is renamed to User web
2010-06-12: TWikibug:Item6490: Fixing hardcoded link to TWiki web
2010-05-26: TWikibug:Item6433: Doc improvements
23 Oct 2009: Peter Thoeny: Validate tag against known tags when adding a tag; improved docs
30 Aug 2008: Colas Nahaboo: enhancements to the "blog" style: Bundles, count of known tags, option to delete tags
28 Aug 2008: Colas Nahaboo: prefix & suffix options renamed as header & footer. New parameter style to TAGME to be able to define different UI style for the default "show" action of TAGME. Implemented a first one, "blog" for the simpler case of authors managing the same tags
26 Aug 2008: Colas Nahaboo: prefix & suffix options to TAGME
16 Oct 2007: Arthur Clemens: added backward compatible example template.
26 Sep 2007: TWiki:Main.CrawfordCurrie TWikibug:Item4728 fixed incorrect cloud font sizes to reflect relative importance of tags actually being displayed
11 Sep 2007: Arthur Clemens: updated example template to TWiki template convention.
11 Jun 2007: Arthur Clemens: fixed sizing of tags with the same tag count; fixed CSS class for select box; updated documentation with "How to put tags on every page".
07 Jun 2007: Arthur Clemens: removed dependency on (unreleased) TWiki 4.2.
21 May 2007: TWiki:Main.WillNorris: added view.tagme.tmpl and updated installation instructions.
30 Apr 2007: Arthur Clemens: fixed calculation of sizes in tag cloud; if mincount is passed only the shown tags are calculated.
18 Apr 2007: Arthur Clemens: added permissions for rename and delete; added TagMeChangeRequests.
17 Apr 2007: TWiki:Main.CrawfordCurrie for Escape Studios External link mark: contributed support for incremental refinement of tag searches.
12 Apr 2007: TWiki:Main.CrawfordCurrie contributed ability to search for multiple tags. TWiki:Main.SvenDowideit for Escape Studios External link mark: added parameters needed for custom search result display.
05 Apr 2007: Arthur Clemens: The "topic tags" select box is now created with Javascript to prevent the tag options getting indexed by search engines. The former select box is used for noscript fallback.
02 Apr 2007: Arthur Clemens: Added "Delete Tag" interface. Added tabbed interface for Create, Rename, Delete tags.
30 Mar 2007: Arthur Clemens: Added "Rename Tag" interface.
22 Mar 2007: Arthur Clemens: Added option NORMALIZE_TAG_INPUT (to be set to 0) to allow any word as tag name (including upper case, punctuation characters and spaces). Moved "Create New Tag" to dedicated page. Created CSS styles in tagme.css. Added mincount parameter to TAGME{tpaction="showalltags"}.
14 Nov 2006: Fix IE browser crash issue on print (forms can't be named "tags"; debug by TWiki:Main.KevinKalmbach)
14 Oct 2006: Fix show default problem introduced by version 07 Oct 2006 (contributed by TWiki:Main.ChristianSuenkel)
07 Oct 2006: nostatus="on" parameter for add/remove tag (contributed by TWiki:Main.FredMorris)
05 Oct 2006: Fix issue of missing topics in tag search if topic name contains plus or minus sign (workaround for TWiki core TWikibug:Item2625 and TWikibug:Item2967)
04 Oct 2006: Fix issue of statistics moving WebHome tags to WebStatistics
02 Oct 2006: Support for topic rename (tags are no longer lost)
14 Sep 2006: MAKETEXT support (TWiki:Main.KoenMartens); fixed nested webs issue; fix in generated XHTML (TWiki:Main.ArthurClemens)
20 May 2006: Support international characters (contributed by TWiki:Main.AntonioTerceiro)
09 May 2006: Support for sub-webs; enclose tag list on topic in span class="tagMePlugin"; tag selector not shown if empty; limit max size of new tags to 30 characters
21 Mar 2006: TagMeSearch with minsize and maxsize parameters; TagMeSearch format with $votecount, $size; fixed JavaScript compatibility issue on TWiki 4.0
11 Mar 2006: TagMeSearch with sort, norelated, nototal, format and separator paramters; linked tags in create new tag section; renamed TagMeViewSpecificTag to a shorter TagMeSearch; workaround for Dakar TWikibug:Item1838 to fix broken links in top bar
06 Mar 2006: Remove my tag vote; added exclude="", minsize="" and maxsize="" parameters; more intuitive icons; in default view, sort tags alphabetically instead of sort by tag vote
03 Mar 2006: Allow underscore in tags (and convert space and dash to underscore); added web="" and topic="" parameters; fixed font size issue in tag cloud with disproportional counts
28 Feb 2006: Use tabs in all/my/specific tags view; show related tags in specific tags view; check if topic exists when adding tags;
26 Feb 2006: Added view all tags / my tags (as tag clouds); view specific tag (sorted by tag count); do not allow guests to create new tags; log add/create tag actions
20 Feb 2006: Initial version
TWiki Dependency: $TWiki::Plugins::VERSION 1.024
CPAN Dependencies: none
Other Dependencies: none
Perl Version: 5.8
Benchmarks: GoodStyle 100%, FormattedSearch 100%, TagMePlugin 99%
Plugin Home:

Related Topics: TagMeViewAllTags, TagMeViewMyTags, TagMeSearch, TagMeDebugViewTags, TagMeDebugSearch, TWikiPlugins, DeveloperDocumentationCategory, AdminDocumentationCategory, TWikiPreferences

Revision: r8 - 2013-10-23 - 14:05:25 - TWikiContributor

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