Social Bookmarking – Librarians where are you?

Social Bookmarking – Librarians where are you?

Came across a blog from Collective Intelligence on the topic of social bookmarking (tagging). I was at the Blogs & Social Media conference referenced in the article, where Keely Flint presented on the Bupa experience using Cogenz as the social bookmarking application. It occurred to me how much more successful these initiatives could be if Librarians were out there evangelising the merits of personal tagging, and how this would support more effective search and retrieval, a point also picked up by Helen Nicol. Maybe I’m reading the wrong blogs, but my perception is that most Librarians remain wedded to structured, corporate categorisation and file management systems, and haven’t yet grasped that the world is changing around them.  Sorry if I’m over-generalising, but  I’ve seen very few  articles/comments/blogs from Librarians in support of social bookmarking. Someone prove me wrong?

11 thoughts on “Social Bookmarking – Librarians where are you?

  1. Thanks for the link, Steve. I think there are a few, but not many. It always surprises me that more librarians in different industries aren’t picking up on social bookmarking as something they can drive – and as you say, use to augment their existing search and retrieval knowledge bases.

  2. Thanks for the comment Neil. I guess this is where I get inundated with lots of complaints from librarians who are doing stuff with social bookmarking. I’ll wait and see!

  3. Helen (Nicol) sent me your way, so I feel obliged to say that there are, indeed, lots of information professionals tagging. I carry links to research (mostly by information professionals) about tagging on Catalogue & Index Blog, if you’re interested –

    Judging by the number of information professionals and other taxonomy designers active in blogging, social bookmarking and creating wikis, the information-trained tagger / folksonomist is alive and well.

    If I get a chance I’ll post later in the week (on my own blog as opposed to C&I) on the two issues you are raising – information professionals and folksonomies and information professionals and organisational culture.

    Hope this is helpful.


  4. Well, judging from the comments, perhaps I am being proved wrong. I will certainly follow up on the various links provided and widening my blog subscriptions.

    Dave and Anne, – thanks for the pointers.

  5. Hi Steve – thanks for the nod. I couldn’t help but encourage those doing great work in the area to reply to your request to be proved wrong 🙂

  6. Steve – in case you didn’t know, this post was picked up in the printed version of Information World Review – it’s on the back page in the Best Bits of the Blogosphere section, and includes both this post and mine on Enterprise 2.0


  7. Good news all – I was going to reply to this when you first posted it as I’ve been with CILIP and the online membership communities for a year as you know – but thought I would see if someone appeared to set you straight – which I am glad to see they have – fantastic! Good work all.

    My curmudgeonly remark might be: OK, so you like tags, but does that mean that ‘librarians’ have to as well?

    This came up at Unicom’s social tools conference yesterday when Lyndsay and I presented the CILIP communities’ story – in fact, the communities team have been exceptionally interested in them and we’re all keen to discuss how to take them further…

  8. Hi there – well I keep thinking it’s a needs must thing… if you’re working in an enterprise and you are faced with an enormous scale of information problem – at some point you goota realise that you are not going to be able to organise it all yourself. But I think the librarians I,ve met get this – they are just not out there shouting about it…

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