Delicious must have saved so many links in its nearly 14 years on this planet.
The bookmarking web service was slowly fading away the past few years, but on Thursday, it officially entered the great beyond. Social bookmarking competitor Pinboard announced it acquired Delicious. By June 15, the old site will be in read-only mode, so users won’t be able to save new bookmarks.
But before we completely forget about the social bookmarking pioneer that arrived in 2003 as del.icio.us, let’s remember the good times it brought us all.
Delicious was ahead of its time and led to so many favorites that survive to this day. Social bookmarking became a thing because of Delicious, which led the charge with tagging to organize online content. Its latest acquirer Pinboard didn’t even come around until 2009.
Sites like StumbleUpon, Diigo and now Pinboard came about based on the Delicious concept and tagging system.
Delicious tried switching things up, even toward the end, to encourage more users to use the tool, but as one of my Mashable colleagues noted, “Nothing really stuck.”
And then the competition and newer technology trounced them. When the cloud made bookmarks saved on one browser easily accessible in another, users didn’t need a separate service.
Pocket, first known as Read It Later when it came out in 2007, really swooped in and took most of Delicious’ potential by focusing on mobile bookmarking instead of desktop. Pinterest also stole Delicious’ thunder by taking saved links and turning them into beautiful pins with boards and a pretty interface.
I think fondly of Delicious even though when I search for memories of Delicious in my inbox I’m reminded of the bumpy past few years. When the site was in transition, links didn’t get saved or applets I’d set up on Zapier and IFTT were riddled with errors. The bookmarklet got super buggy and eventually I deleted it.
Its sale to Pinboard is the fifth sale in the past decade and almost a half. First it was sold to Yahoo in 2005, then to the YouTube founders in 2011. In 2014 Science Inc. bought it and then it was managed by Delicious Media in 2016. It’s final resting place was Pinboard, whose developer Maciej Cegowski said in the announcement he bought Delicious “so it wouldnt disappear from the web.”
But in its heyday, it was a web surfer’s best tool. Power users and link savers everywhere should think fondly of this simple, yet web-shattering tool.
Don’t despair entirely. All your bookmarks can be migrated to the new owners over at Pinboard and bookmarking can continue on at the new service for $11 a year.