Thursday, April 10, 2008

Social Book Marking - What is it all about?

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Social media are becoming popular online as a great tool to network with other bloggers and drive more traffic to your blog. Today, I would like to talk about Social Bookmarking sites and what is it exactly all about.

Social bookmarking is a technique by which internet users store, organize, search, and manage bookmarks of web pages on the internet with the help of metadata.

In a social bookmarking system, internet users save links to web pages that they want to remember and/or share. These social bookmarks are generally public, and can be saved privately, shared only with specified people or groups, shared only inside certain networks, or another combination of public and private domains. Only the allowed people can view these social bookmarks sequentially, by category or tags, or via a search engine.

In definite terms, social bookmarking is a user-defined taxonomy system for bookmarks. Such taxonomy is sometimes called a folksonomy and the bookmarks are referred to as tags. Unlike storing bookmarks in a folder on your computer, tagged pages are stored on the Web and can be accessed from any computer. It is often called as "The real-time Web, organized by you." Web sites dedicated to social bookmarking, such as Flickr and, provide users with a place to store, categorize,annotate and share favorite Web pages and files.

How to use social bookmarking?

1 First decide which of the websites you would like to use for social bookmarking

2 Next go to the website and register yourself and then install the buttons on your toolbar

3 If you visit a Web page that you want to save, you click a "tag" button. A window pops up with the URL and page name and optional fields for you to add notes and tags. (Tags are single-word descriptors -- this is the way social bookmark systems categorize content so that you and other users can find it.)

4 Another button takes you directly to a page with your saved bookmarks and associated tags. If you click on one of the tags you created, you'll be taken to a page listing your saved pages associated with that tag

5 You can also view all users' content associated with that tag or the most popular examples. The site inbox feature lets you subscribe to content saved with a specific tag or content saved by a specific user or a combination of the two

6 When you click a tag or search for a term on the website, the results include information about how many members have saved each item and any tags that they included for it.

Social bookmarking creates a true web of resources and connections--one that is not limited to individuals and their folders but represents the interests and judgments of a community of users.

The great advantages which social bookmarking offers are:

1 The entire tag-based categorization of internet resources (such as web sites) is done by humans, who understand the content of the resource

2 A social bookmarking system can grade a resource based on how many times it has been bookmarked by users (who find it useful, or amusing, or otherwise worthy of remembering and sharing).

3 Social bookmarking can be useful for users as a way to access a combined set of bookmarks from various computers, organize large numbers of bookmarks, and share bookmarks with friends and other contacts

4 Social bookmarking useful for libraries as an easier way to provide lists of informative links to patrons

Though social bookmarking offers many advantages, there are quite a few disadvantages as well.

1 Social bookmarking can also be vulnerable to corruption and conspiracy

2 In social bookmarking, there are no standard set of keywords, standard for the structure of such tags, wrong tagging due to spelling errors, tags that can have more than one meaning

3 Social bookmarking developers need to constantly adjust their security system to overcome abuses by the spammers.

Thank you for your time and happy blogging everyone!

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