What is Social Bookmarking?

Social Bookmarking is a way for users to store, organize, and search internet bookmarks, much like the old "favorites" links on browsers or Internet Explorer's bookmarks link, except on steroids. Instead of having all your favorite bookmarks on your home computer, you could now access your bookmarks from any computer with an internet connection. Having these bookmarks online provides many advantages to users: (23 things).

Advantages of Social Bookmarking:

  • Can access bookmarks from any computer with internet access
  • Can make your own tags (ways you can search to find the bookmarks again)
  • You can share your bookmarks and search through other people's bookmarks
  • You can see other people who have bookmarked the same page as you
  • Can link to RSS feeds to get updates on new tags and/or bookmarks (23 Things)

Examples of Social Bookmarking Websites:

  • furl.png
  • delicious_logo.jpg
  • librarything-logo.gif
  • stumbleupon.png


Del.icio.us was created in 2003 (and was later bought by Yahoo!) and is the most popular website for social bookmarking. In their own words "Delicious is a social bookmarking service that allows users to tag, save, manage, and share web pages from a centralized source. With emphasis on the power of the community, Delicious greatly improves how people discover, remember and share on the Internet." (delicious website and delicious powerpoint)


A Del.icio.us Tutorial

Our Del.icio.us Page

Applications for Libraries

  • Personal research tool for reference librarians
  • LibraryThing offers ability to upload books and users tag them so it is easier for them to find
  • Can link into Blackboard with RSS feed for instruction
  • Pathfinders
  • Turns the bookmark page into a dynamic and non-static page that can be constantly updated to reflect changes
  • Many staff members can contribute links and participate in updating the page rather than 1 or 2 webmasters
  • RSS feeds can be linked in, making patrons/staff aware of changes or new bookmarks added (social bookmarking, tags make libraries delicious, delicious powerpoint)

Delicious Library 2

Libraries Using Social Bookmarking

New York State Library Summer Reading
Michigan University

OCLC's 1000 Best Titles

Problems with Social Bookmarking

  • Has an uncontrolled vocabulary and people without authority can update links
  • Bookmarks with many popular tags move to the top of the search list so finding obscure items may be more difficult
  • Tags may not be accurate since they are user designed (tags help make libraries delicious)

Works Cited

  1. Rethlefsen, M. L. (2007). Tags help make libraries del.icio.us. Library Journal, 132(15), 26-28.
  2. Gilmour, Ron. (2009). Social bookmarking for library services: bibliographic access through del.icio.us. College and Research Libraries News, 70(4), 234-237.
  3. Del.icio.us Website. Retrieved from http://www.delicious.com
  4. Griffey, S. (2009). Make your library del.icio.us. PowerPoint presentation. Retrieved from http://www.opal-online.org/SweeksGriffey_files/frame.htm
  5. 23 Things at the CT State Library. (2009). Week Four: Social Bookmarking. Retrieved from http://csl23things.pbworks.com/Week+Four:+Social+Bookmarking