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Hsin-Liang Chen, PhD: Analyzing Users’ Retrieval Behaviors and Image Queries of a Photojournalism Image Database



Research to enhance the quality of metadata elements and system functions of a photojournalism image archive web site, the Pictures of the Year International (POYi), was conducted using Google Analytics. Visitor activities were collected over a six-month period and findings indicate that visitors tend to browse the website rather than to launch a specific search query. When conducting image searches, users mainly populated the basic search function with single- and multiple-word queries. Advanced search functions represented a mere 0.70% of searches compared to total visits. Collected search terms were classified according to Jorgensen’s (1998) twelve attribute classes and specific attributes. The most popular attributes were the interpretive attributes of artist, theme, and people and the perceptual attribute of setting. The most popular attribute classes were art historical information, abstract concepts, content/story, and people. The popularity of these attribute types may suggest potential modifications to the metadata elements for a photojournalism image database.


Hsin-liang Chen is an assistant professor at the School of Library and Information Science at Indiana University in Indianapolis. His research interests are digital libraries and museums, digital media management, human information interaction, and user studies.