Get More Out of Your Bookmarks With Diigo

There has been 10 years since the first version of Delicious, a social bookmarking app, was released and the world never looked back on how they archived their favorite web sites. Delicious was neglected until not long ago, but, by that moment, newer services seized its throne, such as Pinboard.

Diigo has been around since 2005 and it moved away from similar apps over time by offering tools to highlight and annotate on web pages. The service raised the bar with the inclusion of collaborative and social network and its recent redesign was the icing on the cake to transform Diigo into a standout utility.

Join us to find out the best ways to use Diigo’s resourceful features.

Annotate, Archive, Organize

The easiness to add bookmarks linked with our extended exposure to websites daily resulted in a huge demand for organizing tools, making them the decisive feature to user adhesion. It may sound obvious, but a bookmarking service without smart cataloguing options would be dismissed so quickly we wouldn’t have the time to write a review about it.

Never lose track of your items with Diigo’s organization tools.

Never lose track of your items with Diigo’s organization tools.

Diigo won’t let you down on this part. Assign multiple tags, which are available in the sidebar or as a tag cloud, and descriptions to your bookmarks. Use them later, along with your annotations, to look for specific bookmarks using its search. You can also display only specific kinds of bookmarks with a wide range of filters. If that’s not enough, create lists to hold your bookmarks that share a common subject.

If you explore the service further, you’ll notice Diigo is not limited to bookmarks, allowing you to send images and create notes. Considering that, I’ll call the content added to Diigo as “diig” from now on. If it catches on, you read it here first.

Share and Collaborate

Diigo takes social bookmarking to the next level, dedicating special sections of their service for people to share and discover popular “diigs”. You can follow users and create a feed of their public “diigs”, which can be liked, commented or saved into your library.

Share ‘diigs’ with your groups using the Diigo extension.

Share ‘diigs’ with your groups using the Diigo extension.

There are also groups, communities tied by a single subject that people can join and engage by posting “diigs”. You have a bit more control within groups as you can filter using common tags or add topics of conversation, which is a thread other members can comment and talk over a subject without linking to any external page.

Diiging from the Web

Although the redesign was a long waited and welcomed, the main features of Diigo come from how its extensions can enhance your use of the service. I’m a Safari guy, however, its bookmarklet seems flawed and I installed Google Chrome to achieve the finest experience out of Diigo extension. If you’re on Safari, I’m sorry to disappoint you, but you may prefer to wait until a finer extension comes to play.

Equipped with the recommended extension, Diigo proved to be a notable tool to interact with web pages and articles. Select any range of text and options to highlight the selection or search that string on Diigo will slide in. Every link, quote and image will be conserved as a rich text annotation, so you can capture most of the elements you select.

You can also pin sticky notes to the page for random comments.

You can also pin sticky notes to the page for random comments.

Whenever you come back to a page you “diiged” earlier, the extension icon will get a ribbon and clicking it will recover your annotations and display them on the live page. If this bookmark is public, you can send the cached version to a friend so he can check your notes on, for example, the copy of his startup website. This is what sets Diigo apart from other services: its potential to be an active productivity tool instead of a link storage hiding behind the scene.

Diigo also uploads images from any website. Just hover on an image and you’ll get the options to attach it to your “diig” or include as a standalone item. Also at the image manipulation department, you can take a screenshot of any part of the page and draw basic annotations, like arrows and rectangles, as you probably already do with Skitch.

Your Diigs Working For You

There are other integrations available on Diigo to take advantage of ― you can integrate your Twitter account to save your favorite tweets, create new bookmarks or notes with your account’s email, like in Instapaper or Evernote, or even automatically publish your “diigs” in your blog.

Many features listed here are exclusive to premium subscribers, like multicolored highlights, full text search, and a few others are limited, for example, free accounts can only stash 30 images from the web and highlight 1000 strings per year. However, that won’t stop you from taking the best out of Diigo and if you exceed these numbers, then a subscription would be money well spent.

If you feel the need to take more out of your bookmarks as you interact with pages and store snippets across the web, then Diigo is tailored for you. There could be some refinements on its collaboration tools and I hope its integration with Safari finds better days, but, overall, Diigo offers a great social environment for content and also the tools to transform your bookmarks into improvements in your productivity.


A multi-tool for personal knowledge management.

  • Diigo 4.0  | 
  • Free, $20/year or $5/month or $40/year  | 
  • Diigo, Inc.