I was recently asked whether I use social bookmarking and if so, which application? Although I have tinkered with using my blog and Flipboard, my main space for storing links and resources is Diigo. Although it is pretty straight forward how it works, what is not obvious are the challenges in getting the most out of it. Here then are some of the lessons that I have learnt through my experiences over time …
- Think About Your Structure: Amy Burvall once described hashtags as the soul of the internet. The ability to collect and connect ideas and information is the biggest benefit of social bookmarking. This however has its challenges. I have found over time that it is better to over tag items as this can make it easier to find items at a later date. This includes adding the author as a tag. In addition to this, Diigo provides a means organise around outliners and collaborative groups. When I started I focused on subjects, with one category being 21st century learning. The problem is that most of my links end up in the 21st century so I think that I should probably unpack that a bit more.
- Be Mindful: The biggest challenge with social bookmarking is actually remembering to add links when you find them. This is best done through the use of widgets and bookmarklets, although Diigo also allows you to email links. I used to have my Diigo connected to my Feedly via IFTTT. However, that recipe has been discontinued. While in regards to mobile, I could never master iOS. However, I have found Android much better, with the ability to connect between applications.
- Don’t Have Expectations: I remember setting up a collaborative space for school. Most staff could not see the point in it. They felt that simply Googling information would suffice. Although this may work for surface knowledge, it does not necessarily allow you to dig deeper over time. Tom Barrett describes this mining of knowledge as the ‘resurfacing of ideas‘.
So what about you? Do you use social bookmarking? Why? Why not? As always, comments welcome.