Below is an interesting snippet from ZDNet. It's difficult to know where to start -- is the Autonomy position that del.icio.us and Flickr don't work? Perhaps someone should send Mr. Lynch a copy of the book Ambient Findability or setup a conversation with Thomas Vander Wal on the value of tagging. I do not find clients saying that they are going to abandon search and taxonomy tools. Most customers and other industry experts I talk to are looking at tagging, social bookmarks, tag clouds and folksonomies as solutions that compliment and add value to their information architecture efforts. It is obvious that people will tag for a variety of reasons (both good and bad) and also does not take much insight to note the problems associated with tagging. And yet consumers and companies like IBM (and others I cannot mention due to confidentiality reasons), have found significant value in these tools. IBM has been involved in several webinars in the past discussing the feedback loop folksonomies create that benefits those involved in corporate taxonomy efforts.
This does not diminish the need for tools provided by vendors such as Autonomy - the solutions are synergistic and not exclusionary. Andrew McAfee, Associate Professor, Harvard Business School has also documented an example of where a tagging solution can improve findability. What Autonomy should do is not complain about the evils of tagging but actually deliver a tagging companion product that is integrated with its traditional search and taxonomy tools. While up on stage, the message could be much more persuasive and influential - positioning Autonomy as a vendor working to advance the broader issues around "findability". That would show some market innovation rather than giving the appearance of protecting a status-quo business model that perhaps is not keeping up with the times.
During a presentation, Mr Lynch slammed the popular practice of tagging web content and says that it won't help to organize information. Mr Lynch quoted an essay by Cory Doctorow, the science fiction writer, titled Metacrap. "Tags don't work because people lie, they are lazy, and they use different tags. And there is a huge amount of information that will never be tagged."