In all the hoo-ha of Facebook and my space and how to jump on the social networking bandwagon, social bookmarking has taken a back seat. Because I use delicious everyday, I figured its worthy of a mention and suggestion of a way to use it more laterally.
Social Bookmarking fits into social networking because it’s a way of sharing your favourite websites – with the world if you choose. So instead of your top links living in your (single) browser on your (one) computer, you can add them to a website such as delicious, and tag and classify them, organising them with categories that are meaningful to you, but have them accessible and viewable by anyone, anywhere.
For instance I can add my favourite fabric & wallpaper website www.afficionados.com.au, and add tags as keywords or terms such as “fabric” “wallpaper” “interiordesign” “Australian” “cool” “awardwinning”. Then, when I am cruising around on different computers or browsers, I can access my favourite websites and find them according to the tags I’ve given them. And I can clump my tags together in bundles as they make sense to me, so I can see all my “design” tags in the same bundle. I can display my tags as a cloud or a list, and I can click on the tag at any time and see a list of every site I have labeled with it.
delicious has buttons for every browser (including the social networking browser Flock http://www.flock.com/), so the key is to setup your account, and spend half an hour exporting your bookmarks from your browsers and then re-tagging them in delicious. Then get your “post to delicious” and “my delicious” buttons setup on your browser and you are off and away.
“So how does my tagging and bookmarking my websites become social?” I hear you ask. Two ways: firstly you can find your friends and secondly you can find out what’s hot across the entire delicious network. This can be a great source of random, serendipitous discoveries.
Ask your friends’ delicious account names are and then add them to your network. I am “tiphereth” on delicious so you can add me, for a start. Then when you find a site you would like to share, you can add a tag like “for:adobe” when you post it to delicious.
I really love delicious because its so easy and intuitive to use, and ubiquitous. There is even a plug-in application for Facebook so your friends can see what you’ve been bookmarking and they can see your tag cloud. All the major news sites have the “delicious” button added to their top articles, so even if you haven’t been diligent enough to add the delicious buttons to your browser, you can still bookmark your favourites. Every time you go to delicious home page, you get a snapshot of what everyone is bookmarking, a “what’s hot” and meaningful across the world.
And the lateral application? Companies can do social bookmarking too, as PR, as social marketing, promotions and a reference tool. Adobe is on delicious -and every application they produce is tagged and categorised into wonderfully helpful bundles such as tutorials. Those in charge of their bookmarks are really great at updating them, so you can always find the most recent articles on Photoshop, or the most useful cross-referenced sites, and events from Adobe.
Because everyone’s bookmarks are shared (unless you specify that you want it to be private) you can see at a glance how many others (if any) have chosen to bookmark the same page or site. And you can click on the area which shows how many people have saved it and then you get to see how everyone else categorizes the same information – you can see the history of everyone who’s saved the link and even their notes. You can have a glimpse into how others’ minds operate (always fun to have a sticky beak:))