Photo Tagging Policy

Connemara uses Smugmug ( to archive photos taken of the meadow, conservation and related events. Because there may be multiple people uploading to this account, some structure is necessary to prevent the site from becoming just a hodge-podge of photos and galleries.

Gallery Naming and Uploading Rules

New galleries are generally to be used for

  • Unique events which will likely have multiple photos generated by possibly multiple people. This would include the monthly walks or special events like tree plantings or social occasions
  • Approved photographers who have consistently generated outstanding work
  • Other special cases as approved by staff

Unless otherwise directed by staff,

  • The new gallery name should consist of a descriptive phrase followed by a ‘dash’ followed by the date in the format m/d/yyyy as in 5/25/2011. The gallery name should not contain the submitter or photographer.
  • All other fields should be left as their default

Once the new Gallery has been created and saved, a description should be added as appropriate. If all of the photos are from a specific photographer, their name should be placed in parentheses at the beginning of the description – for example (Photos by Jane Doe) Members of the Meadow Committee had a wild free-for-all at their annual dinner.
Once photos are uploaded they should be arranged by selecting Tools/Many Photos/Arrange/Sort and then selecting Date and Time Taken and Ascending

Photo Organization

As of March 1, 2011, there are almost 6500 photos and movies that have been uploaded by staff and volunteers. With this many photos, some sort of categorizing is necessary – otherwise finding something becomes increasingly impossible. Smugmug will search for photos from a year or arbitrary range of dates.

Searching and Tagging by Keyword

Smugmug also allows for searching by key words. If the search is by keyword, then the search returns entire galleries whose name contains the keyword given for the search. If multiple keywords are given, only galleries with all of the keywords are returned. For this reason, it is important that Gallery names be descriptive.

In addition, a keyword search will return individual photos that have been tagged or captioned with the given keyword(s). One or more keywords can be used (separated by spaces or commas) – for example, a flower with a bug on it might contain the tags plants flowers bugs.
Note that using Tools/ManyPhotos/Caption-Keyword will allow application of the same keyword(s) and/or caption to multiple selected photos in a single gallery. This is very useful since photos in a gallery often contain similar subject matter.

Rules for Tagging and Captioning Photos

Tagging photos is very subjective and consistency in word usage is very import if searches are to be effective. What’s important to one person may not be important to others. For this reason a few generic rules should be kept in mind when tagging or captioning photos

  1. Searches are case insensitive so capitalization does not matter. Separate keywords with spaces or commas
  2. Keywords are single words – do not use phrases
  3. For best search results please try to use one or more of the approved keywords below. Additions to these keywords can be made by staff on request if necessary AND they are added to this documentation for others to use in the future. Keep new keywords as generic as possible
  4. Always use the plural for tags where appropriate – a search for grass is not the same as for grasses
  5. Try to stick to the main subject matter of the photo itself. For example, almost every meadow photo has trees and flowers but they should not be used as tags unless that is the specific reason for the photo
  6. DO NOT use phrases as part of the gallery name.
  7. Not every photo needs to be individually tagged. For example, if an entire gallery is devoted to photos of trees, placing the word trees in the title of the gallery will suffice for search purposes
  8. If you find that a photo is already tagged, please leave those keywords alone, but add others as appropriate per these rules.
  9. Captioning is more specific than tagging. For example, a photo of Jane killing fire ants might be captioned Jane killing fire ants while the appropriate tags might be staff, people, bugs.

The caption is also appropriate for the common or scientific name. A photo of a Red Oak might be captioned Red Oak (Quercus rubra) blooming in the Spring while the tags might be trees, flowers, spring

Approved Tags

Try to use one of the following tags rather than making up new ones. Remember that specifics for a single photo can be put into the Caption if necessary.

  • Humans: people, kids, staff
    Use people for any photo that has a person or part of a person in it. Use kids and staff as a second keyword

  • Other Living Things: plants (flowers, grasses, trees), animals (bugs, birds, reptiles, mammals)
    • If you tag something as plants, please also tag it with either flowers, grasses or trees if appropriate. Use plants by itself if you are tagging something like bark, leaves, stems or any other plant or part of a plant other than flowers, grasses, trees.
    • If you tag something as an animal, please also tag it with either bugs, birds, reptiles or mammals as appropriate.
    • The tag bugs also covers caterpillars, cocoons, spiders and anything else related to insects or arachnids.
  • General: landscape, sky, creek, snow, waterfall, artistic, favorite, marketing, movie, walks
    Use only if the intent of the photo is one or more of these items

  • Seasonal: spring, summer, winter, fall
    Use only if the purpose of the photo is to show something specific to the season (e.g. summer, walk)

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Site last updated January 2, 2020 @ 2:53 pm; This content last updated April 13, 2014 @ 7:58 pm