Is Bookmarking Broken?

Ben Lee

Ben Lee

CEO and Co-founder of Neon Roots

Ben Lee is the co-founder and CEO of Neon Roots, a digital development agency with a mission to destroy the development model and rebuild it from the ground up. After a brief correspondence with Fidel Castro at age nine, Ben decided to start doing things his own way, going from busboy to club manager at a world-class nightclub before he turned 18. Since then, Ben has founded or taken a leading role in 5 businesses in everything from software development to food and entertainment.

Since some of the earliest browsers, bookmarking has existed as a tool for users to revisit files or websites.  However, while browsers are quick to update, ever-evolving to stay relevant and meet user demands, bookmarking functions are surprisingly slow to keep up.

A lot of users have turned to other methods to save their favorite or most important URLs and files.  But at a glance, these methods seem even more complicated and archaic than the current bookmarking systems that have proven ineffective.

For some, their own memory is enough.  Now this method might serve you well if you’re only remembering simple domain names.  If you regularly come to to check out the site, a bookmark probably isn’t necessary.   But if you’re digging for specific articles, specific pages like, chances are memory isn’t enough.

Some just simply leave tabs open, letting the pages hide behind the others until they’ve outlived their usefulness.  While this method of bookmarking could make sense in the short-term, it certainly isn’t efficient in the long haul.  Closing that tab and realizing later you still need it means a lot of time wasted while you dig through your history or desperately follow a trail of purple links searching for the lost content.

Others have taken to emailing page links and files to themselves.  While this may have the added benefit of archiving bookmarks while at the same time saving bookmarks for later, it’s an oddly convoluted extra step for a generation of users who often demand streamlined simplicity.

There are other methods from toolbars to screenshots to some bookmark managers, but most users simply have to stumble across what works for them and adjust accordingly.  Maybe it’s time that bookmarking adjusted to us instead.

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