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Community-Managed Categories Proposal as Submitted

[Proposal to Google Summer of Code 2007 with the Drupal project as originally submitted. Now re-titled Community-Managed Taxonomy to get more with the Drupal way.]

To introduce several features to enable communities of users to create and manage categories directly. Users will be able to vote to combine terms or to move terms under one another in a hierarchy.

Current category systems for content management systems, including Drupal, are limited to two basic types: hierarchies created by site administrators, which typically prove less-than-relevant or restrictive to the using community, and free-tagging, or folksonomies, which quickly grow to 100s or 1000s of terms.

Community categorization, or advanced folksonomy, will enable users to vote to combine terms or to move terms under one another in a hierarchy. This vote will be first-come first serve unless it proves contentious, and then will be put to a "jury."

Participants ourselves -- all of us -- need to be the ones to decide, collectively, how our communications should be categorized.

It will provide for a quick veto of categories deemed too general (or a layer above the usually assigned).

Initial investigation suggests that community-managed categories will be possible with a contributed module and no need to modify core. Taxonomy provides for synonyms and other useful capabilities to this module that are not yet used.

Profit for Drupal

  • A unique, powerful community tool.
  • Relieve administrators from guessing at what categories should be before they have much content
  • Unleash the flexibility of the content management system

Profit for People

  • An important piece in enabling people to participate fully in all aspects of a site: submit content, rate content, and now organize content more powerfully than ever before.

Success Criteria

  • Create the module described above.
  • If patches to core prove necessary, provide patches to core that are accepted.
  • Assist and troubleshoot the use of the module on at least two live, community sites.


  1. Publish goals on and appropriate and mailing lists for feedback and suggestions. Increase familiarity with necessary Drupal internals (already started; until the start of June).
  2. Create a CVS project. Implement features in the order they are specified above. (until beginning or mid of August)
  3. Setup a test site and test all features with the help of the Drupal community. This will begin as soon as the first feature is usable and will be completed by the end of August.
  4. Upload distribution-ready code to Google. Publicize the module on
Searched words: 
cmt terms democratic group tagging


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