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Tagging and Bookmarking

red book mark ribbon

Tagging and bookmarking are methods of categorizing relevant websites in order to be able to find or renavigate to them quickly.

What is it?

Originally, bookmarking was simply a method of storing websites on your personal computer in order to be able to easily return to often used websites and internet services. As the internet grew, users wanted to ‘bookmark’ websites or find new sites based on their interests. This desire became the concept known as ‘tagging’ or ‘social bookmarking’.

Early in the life of the internet, public bookmarking sites such as “itlist” and “hotmarks” became available to users. As these services became more popular, easier to use and economically viable, methods of linking together and organizing data became more available. This became the process of embedding “metadata” into websites, to allow the rising giants of search engines to more easily index websites. Originally invisible to users, as web 2.0 applications and services became available, users were able to not only see this metadata, but to themselves ‘tag’ the site with an appropriate label. This change benefited both users and content providers since it was easier to find relevant web results, which led to increased site traffic and thus revenue.

With so many users online applying meta-tags and labels, however, it is difficult to find the ‘best’ sources on a given topic. It is for this reason that ‘social bookmarking’ sites such as Digg came into existence. It allows users to individually rate a public bookmark and thus quickly and with minimal effort find the best possible source for the information they were looking for.

What can it do?

  • Collect and connect relevant data
  • Organize relevant data
  • Tag specific articles or content throughout the internet, especially on blogs

Uses in a Course

  • Organize links in an easy-to-reference fashion to make research easier
  • Tag content to have a more heuristic approach to content-gathering


  • There are various websites and software available such as Digg or Zotero.

Additional Help

  • Educational Technology can provide support and teach more about tagging and bookmarking.
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