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Author/Editor: Howard Rheingold April 2 10:41 AM Pacific; editor Gigi Johnson, April 10, 1:59pm PDT

What is Social Bookmarking?

Social bookmarking lets you share online links and resources among many other people, both publicly and in closed groups. Bookmarks are stored and shared "in the cloud," tagged or labeled with commons or unique sets of labels for group use.

Possible Features:

  • Easy Add-Ons: Users can install a bookmarklet or browser add-on that enables them to select a snippet of text from any web page and/or write their own brief description of that web page, add appropriate tags, and save the bookmark in a way that makes it available to others.

  • Searchable: Users can find bookmarks by going through collections of bookmarks, searching through tags, or browsing their (or their group's) library of bookmarks.

  • URLs or Blogrolls for Collections: Some social bookmarking services make it possible to send others a unique URL for an entire collection of bookmarks.

  • Public/Private: Some services make it possible to create public or private groups; whenever one person bookmarks a resource, it becomes visible to all group members in the group library.

  • Email Digests: Group members can opt to receive daily or weekly emails with all the bookmarks & snippets from members of that group.

  • Highlighting/Annotation: Some services (i.e., Diigo) enable individuals to highlight specific passages of text and create unique URLs they can share with others that display that web page with their highlighted passages; other members of a Diigo group can add "sticky note" comments to pages, attached to specific highlighted passages, and comment on the comments.

  • Themes or Groupings: Some services (i.e., Delicious) enable users to create collections of thematically-related bookmarks with several tags ("Stacks") and share them. Some services (i.e. Pearltrees) enable teams to add bookmarks to collections.

How would a peeragogy group use social bookmarking?

  • A group can agree on criteria for bookmarking resources about their particular topic, and agree upon a set of tags.

  • Using a group or team feature, individual members of a peeragogy group can add bookmarks that are available in various ways to other members of the group.

  • This kind of service can be particularly useful when gathering resources as candidates for a self-organized syllabus --- services that enable discussions of particular texts can help member of a group decide how to qualify and prioritize resources.

Things to keep in mind

  • Does the service enable groups or teams?

  • Can groups be private?

  • Can individuals and groups highlight passages, leave notes attached to passages, engage in comment threads about bookmarks, make collections, share unique URLs for particular tags, combinations of tags, or collections?

  • Can lists be accessed offline?

  • Can results be exported and/or backed up if the service changes its ownership or its terms?

Sample Resources



Social bookmarking for storing, sharing, and discovering web bookmarks.

Cost:FreeDate Created:2003Ownership:Private; San Mateo,

CA-based; bought by Yahoo! in 2005; bought by AVOS (YouTube founders Chad Hurley & Steve Chen) in 2011| |*Time/Place:*|Group or individual, asynchronous, cloud-based| |*Ease of Entry:*|[[]]] low threshold| |*Features:*|600,000 unique visitors/month 2/12 (; Group lists (private or public), collections of thematic bookmarks can be assembled in sharable "Stacks"|



"Digest of Internet Information, Groups and Other stuff" --- a "social annotation service." Web Highlighter and Sticky Notes, Online Bookmarking. Powerful research tool and a knowledge-sharing community. Annotate, Archive, Organize. Seems to have outlasted a very crowded social annotation space.

Cost:Free Version has unlimited bookmarks; $20 Basic and $40 Premium

versions with unlimited highlights and storage| |*Date Created:*|beta 2005, launched 2006| |*Ownership:*|Private; Reno, NV-Based|

Time/Place:Group or individual, asynchronous, cloud-based*Ease of

Entry:*|[[]]] low threshold| |*Features:*|Group lists (private or public); 200,000 monthly unique visitors (; teacher/educator accounts available|



Zotero, a browser-based research collaboration tool, links to research across the web, and can both share resource links in public and private groups, as well as house message board conversations. It can store PDFs, images, audio and video files, and snapshots of web pages. It works well as a Firefox add-on, yet can be used offline.

Cost:Freemium (up to 100 MB of storage free; 1 -- 25 GB cost

$2-20/month)| |*Date Created:*|2006| |*Ownership:*|Open Source; project of theRoy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media at George Mason University; funded by theAndrew W. Mellon Foundation, theInstitute of Museum and Library Services, and theAlfred P. Sloan Foundation| |*Time/Place:*|Group or individual, asynchronous, cloud-based, available offline| |*Ease of Entry:*|[[]]] low threshold| |*Features:*|Group lists (private or public), exportable to many bibliographic formats, online discussion groups|



A place to collect, organize and share information on the web. You use it to store and share Tweets, videos, photos, blogs, searches. Then you can arrange them into "trees" of information

Cost:FreeDate Created:2009Ownership:Private;

Paris-based; Venture-funded| |*Time/Place:*|Group or individual, asynchronous, cloud-based| |*Ease of Entry:*|[[]]] videos and examples available| |*Features:*|Social bookmarking with context- and connection visualization.|