Social Bookmarking

  • Offer discovery – great at onset of research
  • Non-binary and all terms listed together
  • Democratic
  • Self moderating
  • Follow desire lines
  • Offer insights
  • Engender community
  • Low-cost alternative to traditional taxonomy
  • Only requires small learning curve


  • No synonym control
  • Lack precision
  • Lack hierarchy
  • Lack recall susceptible to gaming (spamming)


  • Address limitations with tag clusters, tag bundles, faceted tags, deep tagging in video

SEE PennTags Project – bookmarking initiative that allows Penn library users to bookmark catalog records, add tags, share with others


Is social bookmarking a fad or a trend?

On what online resources would the incorporation of social bookmarking be beneficial?

Should social bookmarking be incorporated into perpetual resources like HOLLIS?

How are comments maintained over time? Are they perpetual, weeded out occasionally, all removed on some timetable? Whose responsibility should it be to perform maintenance?

What impact will social functionality have on public terminals?

One Response to “Social Bookmarking”

  1. Michael Hemment Says:

    Many of the questions raised in this category were addressed at the HCL workshop: “Social Tagging@Harvard: Del.ici.ous Alternative or Passing Flickr,” March 27-28, 2007. Complete video of this event is available through Berkman Media.

    For a discussion of how Professor Dan Smail in the History Department is using social tagging in his “Persons and Things in Medieval Europe” class, see my blog entry. ResearchForward also considers the EdTags initiative at HGSE and the advantages and limitations of tag clouds.