Recently, I abandoned the Delicious social bookmarking service. Although it had served me well, its recent change of ownership had me concerned for its future. The new owners were trying to make the service into something else and I didn't feel like going along for the ride. I was concerned about the future of all the links that I had been adding to the service since 2006. These concerns turned to alarm when the export function that allowed me to download my links failed to work.
Repeated attempts to get customer support to help me failed. Eventually I figured out on my own that their export interface was pointing to the wrong URL and that the feature wasn't broken at all; they simply hadn't bothered to notice (or care) that their users couldn't download their own links. That shattered my faith in Delicious. For me this highlights a danger of using cloud-based services: once you've invested a lot of time and energy in creating content on a service, how easily can you get it out if the service goes south? How much control, really, do you have over your own data?
The service I am using now, Diigo, won my allegiance by providing the correct URL for exporting Delicious links. Diigo is a more advanced service that goes beyond bookmarking and annotation to include screen capture and document capture. The more advanced features require a paying subscription and I'm not sure I'm ready to spring for that. I'm still pondering whether I should be using a cloud-based service for this type of information capture. I like their marketing graphic, however, which positions Diigo as an "evolved" information management tool.
This is part of a series of posts summarizing my PIM activities in 2011.