Ask Difference

Label vs. Tag — What's the Difference?

By Tayyaba Rehman — Updated on October 26, 2023
A label often denotes information or branding on a product, while a tag is a small piece attached to something for identification or classification.
Label vs. Tag — What's the Difference?

Difference Between Label and Tag

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Key Differences

The word "Label" often refers to a piece of paper, plastic, or other material attached to a product that provides information about it. It might carry the brand name, ingredients, or instructions for use. In contrast, a "Tag" usually refers to a small piece of material, often with basic identification information, attached to items like clothing, luggage, or merchandise.
Tayyaba Rehman
Oct 26, 2023
In the digital realm, both "Label" and "Tag" carry particular significance. A "Label" might be a category or section in an email client, grouping certain emails together. Meanwhile, a "Tag" might be a keyword or term assigned to a blog post, helping in its categorization and searchability.
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Oct 26, 2023
The concept of "Label" often conveys a sense of branding or official categorization. For example, the label on a wine bottle will tell the brand, origin, and type of wine. On the other hand, a "Tag" may imply a temporary or supplementary form of identification. In a store, a price tag provides the cost but can be removed once purchased.
Tayyaba Rehman
Oct 26, 2023
"Label" and "Tag" are often used interchangeably in casual language, but they have distinct uses. A music label, for instance, refers to a company that produces and markets music. In comparison, a "Tag" would be inappropriate in this context, as it implies a smaller, more transient form of identification.
Tayyaba Rehman
Oct 26, 2023
In communication and social dynamics, "Label" can also refer to a descriptive term applied to an individual or group, often based on stereotypes or generalizations. A "Tag," in similar social contexts, doesn't carry the same connotation, maintaining its primary association with identification and categorization.
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Oct 26, 2023
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Comparison Chart

Primary Use

Denotes information or branding on a product.
A piece attached for identification or classification.
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Material Form

Often a sticker or printed directly on a product.
Usually a dangling piece, sometimes made of cardboard or plastic.
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Digital Context

Categories or sections, especially in email clients.
Keywords or terms, particularly on websites or blogs.
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Implication

Branding, official categorization.
Temporary or supplementary identification.
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Social Connotations

Stereotypes or generalizations about an individual or group.
Primarily maintains its identification and categorization meaning.
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Compare with Definitions

Label

A piece of material providing information about a product.
The label on the jar listed all the ingredients.
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Oct 26, 2023

Tag

A piece of material attached to something for identification or description.
The tag on the shirt displayed the price.
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Label

A radioactive isotope used to trace a substance in a biological or chemical process.
The scientist used a radioactive label to track the compound.
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Tag

A keyword assigned to a data item for categorization or retrieval.
He added several tags to his blog post for better searchability.
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Label

An electronic device that emits a signal for tracking.
The research team placed a label on the shark to monitor its movements.
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Tag

A graffiti signature or insignia.
The building was covered in colorful tags by local artists.
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Oct 26, 2023

Label

A label (as distinct from signage) is a piece of paper, plastic film, cloth, metal, or other material affixed to a container or product, on which is written or printed information or symbols about the product or item. Information printed directly on a container or article can also be considered labelling.
Tayyaba Rehman
May 14, 2020

Tag

A short phrase or quotation added for emphasis or clarification.
The speaker ended with the tag, To each his own.
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Oct 26, 2023

Label

An item used to identify something or someone, as a small piece of paper or cloth attached to an article to designate its origin, owner, contents, use, or destination.
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May 14, 2020

Tag

A strip of leather, paper, metal, or plastic attached to something or hung from a wearer's neck to identify, classify, or label
Sale tags on all coats and dresses.
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May 14, 2020

Label

A descriptive term; an epithet.
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Tag

The plastic or metal tip at the end of a shoelace.
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Label

A distinctive name or trademark identifying a product or manufacturer, especially a recording company.
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Tag

The contrastingly colored tip of an animal's tail.
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Label

(Architecture) A molding over a door or window; a dripstone.
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Tag

A dirty, matted lock of wool.
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Label

(Heraldry) A figure in a field consisting of a narrow horizontal bar with several pendants.
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Tag

A loose lock of hair.
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Label

(Chemistry) See tracer.
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Tag

A rag; a tatter.
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Label

To attach a label to
Labeled the jars before storing them.
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Tag

A small, loose fragment
I heard only tags and snippets of what was being said.
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Label

To identify or designate with a descriptive term; describe or classify
"He missed two crucial penalty kicks ... and was labeled a loser by the previously loyal British press" (Phil Ball).
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Tag

An ornamental flourish, especially at the end of a signature.
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Label

(Chemistry) To add a tracer to (a compound).
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Tag

A designation or epithet, especially an unwelcome one
He did not take kindly to the tag of pauper.
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Label

A small ticket or sign giving information about something to which it is attached or intended to be attached.
We laughed at her because the label was still on her new sweater.
The label says this silk scarf should not be washed in the washing machine.
Although the label priced this poster at three pounds, I got it for two.
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May 14, 2020

Tag

A brief quotation used in a discourse to give it an air of erudition or authority
Shakespearean tags.
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Label

A name given to something or someone to categorise them as part of a particular social group.
Ever since he started going to the rock club, he's been given the label "waster".
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Tag

A cliché, saw, or similar short, conventional idea used to embellish a discourse
These tags of wit and wisdom bore me.
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Label

(music) A company that sells records.
The label signed the band after hearing a demo tape.
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May 14, 2020

Tag

The refrain or last lines of a song or poem.
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May 14, 2020

Label

(computing) A user-defined alias for a numerical designation, the reverse of an enumeration.
Storage devices can be given by label or ID.
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Tag

The closing lines of a speech in a play; a cue.
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Label

(computing) A named place in source code that can be jumped to using a GOTO or equivalent construct.
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Tag

A label assigned to identify data in memory.
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Label

(heraldry) A charge resembling the strap crossing the horse’s chest from which pendants are hung.
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Tag

A sequence of characters in a markup language used to provide information, such as formatting specifications, about a document.
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Label

(obsolete) A tassel.
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Tag

A metatag.
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Label

A small strip, especially of paper or parchment (or of some material attached to parchment to carry the seal), but also of iron, brass, land, etc.
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Tag

(Anatomy) A small outgrowth or polyp
A skin tag.
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Label

A piece of writing added to something, such as a codicil appended to a will.
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Tag

(Slang) A piece of graffiti featuring text, especially the author's name, rather than a picture
“Instead of a cursive linear tag, Super Kool painted his name along the exterior of a subway car in huge block pink and yellow letters” (Eric Scigliano).
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May 14, 2020

Label

(historical) A brass rule with sights, formerly used with a circumferentor to take altitudes.
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Tag

(Games) A children's game in which one player pursues the others until that player is able to touch one of the other players, who then in turn becomes the pursuer.
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Label

(architecture) The projecting moulding by the sides, and over the tops, of openings in mediaeval architecture.
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Tag

(Baseball) The act of tagging a base runner.
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Label

In mediaeval and later art, a representation of a band or scroll containing an inscription.
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Tag

(Sports) The act of tagging a ball carrier in touch football.
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Label

(graphical user interface) A non-interactive control or widget displaying text, often used to describe the purpose of another control.
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Tag

To label, identify, or recognize with a tag or other identifier
I tagged him as a loser.
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Label

(transitive) To put a label (a ticket or sign) on (something).
The shop assistant labeled all the products in the shop.
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Tag

To put a ticket on (a motor vehicle) for a traffic or parking violation.
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Label

(ditransitive) To give a label to (someone or something) in order to categorise that person or thing.
He's been unfairly labeled as a cheat, although he's only ever cheated once.
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May 14, 2020

Tag

To add as an appendage to
Tagged an extra paragraph on the letter.
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May 14, 2020

Label

(biochemistry) To replace specific atoms by their isotope in order to track the presence or movement of this isotope through a reaction, metabolic pathway or cell.
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Tag

To follow closely
Excited children tagged the circus parade to the end of its route.
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May 14, 2020

Label

(biochemistry) To add a detectable substance, either transiently or permanently, to a biological substance in order to track the presence of the label-substance combination either in situ or in vitro
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Tag

To cut the tags from (sheep).
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Label

A tassel.
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Tag

To add a taggant to
Explosives that were tagged with coded microscopic bits of plastic.
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Label

A slip of silk, paper, parchment, etc., affixed to anything, and indicating, usually by an inscription, the contents, ownership, destination, etc.; as, the label of a bottle or a package.
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May 14, 2020

Tag

To incorporate into (a compound) a more readily detected substance whereby the compound can be detected and its metabolic or chemical history followed.
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Label

A slip of ribbon, parchment, etc., attached to a document to hold the appended seal; also, the seal.
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Tag

(Slang) To mark or vandalize (a surface) with a graffiti tag
Tagged the subway walls.
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Label

A writing annexed by way of addition, as a codicil added to a will.
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Tag

To follow after; accompany
Tagged after me everywhere.
Insisted on tagging along.
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Label

A barrulet, or, rarely, a bendlet, with pendants, or points, usually three, especially used as a mark of cadency to distinguish an eldest or only son while his father is still living.
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May 14, 2020

Tag

To touch (another player) in the game of tag.
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Label

A brass rule with sights, formerly used, in connection with a circumferentor, to take altitudes.
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Tag

(Baseball) To touch (a base runner) with the ball in order to make a putout.
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Label

The name now generally given to the projecting molding by the sides, and over the tops, of openings in mediæval architecture. It always has a square form, as in the illustration.
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Tag

(Sports) To touch (a ball carrier) to end a play in touch football.
Tayyaba Rehman
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Label

In mediæval art, the representation of a band or scroll containing an inscription.
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Tag

A small label.
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Label

To affix a label to; to mark with a name, etc.; as, to label a bottle or a package.
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May 14, 2020

Tag

A children's chasing game in which one player (known as "it") attempts to touch another, who then becomes "it".
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Label

To affix in or on a label.
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Tag

A skin tag, an excrescence of skin.
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Label

A brief description given for purposes of identification;
The label Modern is applied to many different kinds of architecture
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Tag

A type of cardboard.
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Label

Trade name of a company that produces musical recordings;
The artists and repertoire department of a recording label is responsible for finding new talent
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Tag

Graffiti in the form of a stylized signature particular to the artist.
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Label

A radioactive isotope that is used in a compound in order to trace the mechanism of a chemical reaction
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Tag

A dangling lock of sheep's wool, matted with dung; a dung tag.
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Label

An identifying or descriptive marker that is attached to an object
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Tag

An attribution in narrated dialogue (eg, "he said") or attributed words (e.g. "he thought").
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Label

Assign a label to; designate with a label;
These students were labelled `learning disabled'
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Tag

(music) The last line (or last two lines) of a song's chorus that is repeated to indicate the end of the song.
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Label

Attach a tag or label to;
Label these bottles
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Tag

(television) The last scene of a TV program, often focusing on the program's subplot.
Cold open
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Label

Pronounce judgment on;
They labeled him unfit to work here
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Tag

A vehicle number plate; a medal bearing identification data (animals, soldiers).
The subwoofer in the trunk was so loud, it vibrated the tag like an aluminum can.
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Label

Distinguish (as a compound or molecule) by introducing a labeled atom
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Tag

(baseball) An instance of touching the baserunner with the ball or the ball in a gloved hand to rule him "out."
The tag was applied at second for the final out.
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Label

Distinguish (an element or atom) by using a radioactive isotope or an isotope of unusual mass for tracing through chemical reactions
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May 14, 2020

Tag

(computing) A piece of markup representing an element in a markup language.
The <title> tag provides a title for the Web page.
The <sarcasm> tag conveys sarcasm in Internet slang.
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May 14, 2020

Label

A brand or company that produces music, films, or other products.
She signed a contract with a major music label.
Tayyaba Rehman
Oct 26, 2023

Tag

(computing) A keyword, term, or phrase associated with or assigned to data, media, and/or information enabling keyword-based classification; often used to categorize content.
I want to add genre and artist tags to the files in my music collection.
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May 14, 2020

Label

A category or class of people or things.
He doesn't like the label of outsider.
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Oct 26, 2023

Tag

Any slight appendage, as to an article of dress; something slight hanging loosely.
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Tag

A metallic binding, tube, or point, at the end of a string, or lace, to stiffen it.
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Tag

The end, or catchword, of an actor's speech; cue.
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Tag

Something mean and paltry; the rabble.
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Tag

A sheep in its first year.
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Tag

(biochemistry) Any short peptide sequence artificially attached to proteins mostly in order to help purify, solubilize or visualize these proteins.
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Tag

(slang) A person's name.
What's your tag?
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Tag

A decoration drawn over some Hebrew letters in Jewish scrolls.
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Tag

(transitive) To label (something).
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Tag

To mark (something) with one’s tag.
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Tag

(transitive) To remove dung tags from a sheep.
Regularly tag the rear ends of your sheep.
He really tagged that ball.
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May 14, 2020

Tag

To have sex with someone (especially a man of a woman)
Steve is dying to tag Angie from chemistry class.
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May 14, 2020

Tag

To put a runner out by touching them with the ball or the ball in a gloved hand.
He tagged the runner for the out.
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May 14, 2020

Tag

To mark with a tag (metadata for classification).
I am tagging my music files by artist and genre.
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May 14, 2020

Tag

To follow closely, accompany, tag along.
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May 14, 2020

Tag

(transitive) To catch and touch (a player in the game of tag).
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Tag

(transitive) To fit with, or as if with, a tag or tags.
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Tag

To fasten; to attach.
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Tag

Any slight appendage, as to an article of dress; something slight hanging loosely; specifically, a direction card, or label.
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Tag

A metallic binding, tube, or point, at the end of a string, or lace, to stiffen it.
Tayyaba Rehman
May 14, 2020

Tag

The end, or catchword, of an actor's speech; cue.
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Tag

Something mean and paltry; the rabble.
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Tag

A sheep of the first year.
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Tag

A child's play in which one runs after and touches another, and then runs away to avoid being touched.
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Tag

To fit with, or as with, a tag or tags.
He learned to make long-tagged thread laces.
His courteous host . . . Tags every sentence with some fawning word.
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Tag

To join; to fasten; to attach.
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Tag

To follow closely after; esp., to follow and touch in the game of tag. See Tag, a play.
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Tag

To follow closely, as it were an appendage; - often with after; as, to tag after a person.
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Tag

A label made of cardboard or plastic or metal
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Tag

A small piece of cloth or paper
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Tag

A game in which one child chases the others; the one who is caught becomes the next chaser
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Tag

(sports) the act of touching a player in a game (which changes their status in the game)
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Tag

Attach a tag or label to;
Label these bottles
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Tag

Touch a player while he is holding the ball
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Tag

Provide with a name or nickname
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Tag

Go after with the intent to catch;
The policeman chased the mugger down the alley
The dog chased the rabbit
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Tag

Supply (blank verse or prose) with rhymes
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Tag

A game where one person chases others to touch or "tag" them.
The kids spent the afternoon playing tag in the park.
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Oct 26, 2023

Common Curiosities

How do labels help in product branding?

Labels often display the brand name, logo, and other information, helping consumers identify and trust the product.
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Why would someone tag a blog post?

Tagging helps in categorization, searchability, and can provide context to readers.
Tayyaba Rehman
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Are tags just for products?

No, tags can be found on a variety of items, from clothing to online content.
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Is a label permanent?

Not always. While some labels are permanent, others can be removed.
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Can "Label" and "Tag" be used interchangeably?

In some contexts they can, but they often have distinct uses and meanings.
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Oct 26, 2023

How do labels work in digital contexts, like emails?

In emails, labels can help categorize and group related emails together, aiding in organization.
Tayyaba Rehman
Oct 26, 2023

Can tags help in online searchability?

Yes, tags can enhance online searchability by associating content with specific keywords.
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Oct 26, 2023

Do labels always provide accurate information?

Ideally, they should, but it's always good to verify critical information from trusted sources.
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Oct 26, 2023

Do labels only appear on physical products?

No, labels can also be digital, like in email categorization.
Tayyaba Rehman
Oct 26, 2023

Can a tag be a form of a game?

Yes, "tag" is also a game where players chase and "tag" each other.
Tayyaba Rehman
Oct 26, 2023

Can a label be prejudicial in a social context?

Yes, when applied to individuals or groups, labels can perpetuate stereotypes or biases.
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Oct 26, 2023

How are tags used in social media?

In social media, tags often help categorize content, link to related topics, or tag users.
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Oct 26, 2023

Why do graffiti artists use tags?

Tags in graffiti often serve as an artist's signature or mark of territory.
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Oct 26, 2023

What's the purpose of a price tag?

A price tag provides the cost of an item for sale.
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Oct 26, 2023

Are music labels just about music?

While focused on music, many music labels also delve into merchandise, branding, and other ventures.
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Oct 26, 2023

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Author Spotlight

Written by
Tayyaba Rehman
Tayyaba Rehman is a distinguished writer, currently serving as a primary contributor to askdifference.com. As a researcher in semantics and etymology, Tayyaba's passion for the complexity of languages and their distinctions has found a perfect home on the platform. Tayyaba delves into the intricacies of language, distinguishing between commonly confused words and phrases, thereby providing clarity for readers worldwide.

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