Delicious shoots itself in the foot

I’m a great fan of social bookmarking and have a large (1300+) collection of bookmarks on Delicious, all with some text copied from the page or my own annotation.  Delicious has its weak points; my personal pet hate was searching, for which you had to submit your search term exactly. Even then it didn’t always find a bookmark you knew was there.

It seems to be the season for revamps. Today, soon after Facebook’s much-derided effort, and in the wake of being purchased by YouTube’s founders, Delicious unveiled its new look.  It’s hard to see how this is any sort of improvement.  It is now impossible to search your own bookmarks. Since only about half my tags are now visible, it’s not really clear how I navigate my own bookmarks at all.  ‘Managing your network’ lists ‘profiles that follow you’, except that they aren’t – they are the ones I’m following.  There’s no obvious way to follow anyone else, or indeed to find out who is following me.   I don’t get shown my own tags when I tag a new bookmark, so I can’t tell if I’m creating a new tag category unnecessarily. It is now only possible to see 10 bookmarks at a time. You can only see a selection of comments made by other users for the same page.  And so on.  They are very proud of their new ‘stacking’ facility (‘Join now and get stacking’ exhorts the home page), which allows you to collect bookmarks together, but I want my tag collection back!

The cynic in me wonders whether the introduction of stacks and the difficulty in managing one’s own personal bookmark collection are a less-than-subtle way of pushing YouTube content (or advertisers’ websites) at the user.  This could be done, for example via the ‘Featured Stacks’ on the homepage (current themes of these include surfing, doughnuts, dog costumes, Las Vegas showgirls and ‘nutrition tips’. I don’t want any of these! I want my tags and I want to be able to search my own bookmarks!)

Fortunately, I copied my bookmarks over to Diigo earlier this year, so I have access to most of them. I have exported my current collection to Diigo too, but have been warned there will be a delay before they are online: ‘in the last day or so, tens of thousands of users have entrusted us with millions of precious bookmarks collected over the years… ‘.  Now I wonder why that is! (Having said that, they did upload my bookmarks within a few minutes).

2 thoughts on “Delicious shoots itself in the foot

  1. cmbeh

    Totally agree. This is a mess. There appears to be no friendly email or page popping up to explain everything that is changing. They’ve just taken away something I depend on and use every day. Time to move to Pinboard I think.

  2. Virginia

    I’ve been on Diigo ever since, but I notice that in mid-2012 Delicious dropped the stacks feature and went back to tags. They promise a new site design in early January and depending on how it looks, it might be enough to tempt me back. (I liked for example seeing how many other people had bookmarked the same URL and reading their comments). But I am a bit wary of any site that (Facebook-style) makes unannounced and dramatic changes that reduce functionality.


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