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Social Bookmarking

What can you tell me about social bookmarking?

Well, a lot actually! I know most of you have probably heard of bookmarking and some of you probably know what I’m talking about when I say social networking, but what about social bookmarking? Do those three things even have anything to do with each other? The answer to that is yes and no. Allow me to explain.

When you bookmark a Web site, you’re pretty much adding it to your Favorites list (in your Web browser) so you’ll be able to find it easier and faster the next time you want to visit it. That way, you don’t have to take up so much time finding it again in the wide world of the Web. Now, I’m willing to guess that most of you bookmark a lot of Web sites on a regular basis. Am I right? So, once you have all those sites compiled, what are you going to do with them? Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to share them with other people who may have the same interests as you?

Well, that’s where social bookmarking comes into play. It allows you to share your bookmarks with other Internet users in a collaborative sort of way. Usually, social bookmarking takes place on sites where the users can create an account to add their bookmarks to. It’s also helpful to do it on sites that allow you to insert keywords for the types of bookmarks you add. That way, they all can be organized and set into categories that other users can easily search through.

Social bookmarking gives you the chance to see all of the Web sites you may have missed thus far. By seeing what other users submit in certain categories, you can view the ones that fit your interests the best. You won’t have to waste your time looking at other sites that don’t interest you either. Also, by being able to see all the sites that other people add, you can start to accumulate a whole slew of new resources. It’s all so helpful and you certainly can’t complain about any of that!

Once you become a part of a social bookmarking site, you become a member of that community. You and all the other users are there for the same thing and you can help each other out in finding sites that will benefit all of you. It also makes searching the Web so much easier and quicker. Another great thing is that once you’re part of a site, you can access it from any computer and any browser. That way, you’re never limited in seeing the social bookmarks you’ve been waiting for.

Now, you’re probably wondering how you can get started. There are a few social bookmarking sites online today, with one of the most popular being del.icio.us [1]. You can create your own account there and once you’re all set up, you can search by keywords to find other bookmarks that may interest you. This site also has lists for the “Popular” and “Recent” categories, so you can dive right into your searching. You can find bookmarks for all types of things on here too. From software to design to photography to shopping, it’s all here.

Another great social bookmarking site is reddit.com [2]. It is a great source for up and coming online content. Reddit also has a very unique and easy voting system. Other social bookmarking sites that may be worth a look are Furl, StumbleUpon and Slashdot.

Now, of course, there are always pros and cons to everything and social bookmarking is no exception. If social bookmarking is going to work properly, it takes a lot of organization to make sure all of the information is divided up correctly and is relevant. Sometimes, the sites fall short of that and it can make your research a lot more difficult. On the other hand, these sites allow users to gain a bigger knowledge base, all while helping others do the same thing. Social bookmarking is a feel good type of thing and if done right, it can benefit a lot of people.

Check it out!

~ Erin