The end of the social bookmarking site Delicious

Martin Brinkmann
Jun 5, 2017
Updated • Jun 5, 2017

Pinboard, a site you may have never heard of, has acquired the social bookmarking site Delicious in an all-money deal for $35000 US Dollars.

Delicious, or, was a popular social bookmarking site back in the days when sites like Digg made up the forefront of social news sites on the Internet.

Anyone could join the site, and add bookmarks to it using various tools that were made available. Users could vote on bookmarks, and being on the top bookmarks of a given day resulted in a good chunk of referrals from the site to whichever sites were listed there.

Interesting tidbit: Our first article about Delicious, Check your bookmarks, dates back to 2007 and reviewed a tool that allowed Delicious users to check their bookmarks for dead links. The first mention of Delicious dates back to 2005.

The site's history is a troubled one, as it was sold no less than five times ever since its launch on the Internet. First to Yahoo, then by Yahoo to AVOS Systems in 2011, by AVOS Systems to Science In in 2014, and by Science INC to Delicious Media in 2016. Now, for the last time to Pinboard, a subscription-based social bookmarking service.

The announcement on the Pinboard blog highlights why Pinboard acquired Delicious, and what this means for Pinboard or Delicious members.

  • Pinboard will set the Delicious site to read only on June 15, 2017. This means, that users won't be able to add, edit or remove bookmarks from the site, and that the API will stop functioning.
  • Users will be able to access their bookmarks, and all public bookmarks, even after June 15.
  • The Pinboard developer plans to fix the Delicious export tool so that users of the service can use it to export their bookmarks.

All Delicious users are invited to create a Pinboard account. Pinboard accounts are available for $11 per year. The service is advertised as a "fast, no-nonsense bookmarking site for people who value privacy and speed".

There are no ads or tracking on Pinboard, which should appeal to users who value privacy and don't mind paying a couple of bucks per year for that.

Pinboard users may add bookmarks from any browser to their account, connect to Twitter, and sync with services such as Pocket or Instapaper. The service offers additional features such as full-text search, and dead link checking.

Now You: Do you use an online bookmarking or sync service for bookmarks?

The end of the social bookmarking site Delicious
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The end of the social bookmarking site Delicious
Pinboard, a site you may have never heard of, has acquired the social bookmarking site Delicious in an all-money deal for $35000 US Dollars.
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  1. Sam said on June 6, 2017 at 4:07 pm

    Interesting how cheap Pinboard have been able to acquire Delicious for – I think it was sold to Yahoo about 10 years ago for $30m and now it’s only $30k!? What do you think is the future for bookmarking sites?

  2. Norbert Lars said on June 5, 2017 at 8:57 pm

    Delicious was the best while being … after was sold to yahoo the problem appeared. their extensions for firefox /chrome got “zero” real updates and soon were full of errors. after that the db was not working properly and the saving of extensions was total chaos, and i`ve moved to chrome bookmarks forever :(

    delicios + firefox = was perfect, hiding firefox bookmarks bar and placing some a special tag to be shown as bar in delicios ( i used “bar1” “bar2” “bar3” and switched over them when i needed something )

    but delicious got sold and extension was miserable working, having to change numbers to make it at least work in new firefox versions, than firefox got “australis” and removed the bar. that was the last stroke for me, moved to chrome and never looked back :)

  3. Clairvaux said on June 5, 2017 at 6:32 pm

    How about a bookmarks manager ? You know, something called a program, you install on your own computer ? I would be glad to find one. Firefox bookmark “management” is horrible, and nobody seems interested in correcting it. Mozilla is busy telling us that coloured socks are fine to wear. If their sartorial inclinations are akin to their software taste, no wonder such a basic need is neglected.

    1. brian said on June 6, 2017 at 7:01 am

      Firefox has one of the best bookmark manager for browsers. Edge and IE do not even have a bookmark manager. Opera used to discard the thing called bookmark and Chrome’s bookmark manager was awful.

    2. AAA said on June 6, 2017 at 3:38 am

      The best bookmark manager is your own brain. Don’t be fooled by these free managing stuff you get to make your life convenient; they get the data of your preferred sites, and so they make and call it a ‘free’ app/feature. :)

      1. Clairvaux said on June 6, 2017 at 3:55 am

        My brain ? For 15 000 bookmarks, and counting ? I might as well get rid of my PC, and “use my brain”… Of course, by bookmark manager, I mean a real program, something you install on your PC ; not a “service”, or an “app”, or a site. Local software does not siphon off your data ; maybe that’s a reason why it’s a dying breed…

        Someone (unpublished comment, I don’t know why) mentioned Linkman by Outertech. I have it installed since ages and never use it. Two reasons : 1) incredibly old-fashioned, needlessly complex interface ; the sort they made back then, when they wanted to show you they could put everything but the kitchen sink in it, and then some ; 2) not high DPI-aware, so either blurry interface, or parts of it extremely tiny, or cropped out of the frame.

        I just installed the “new” June 1st version ; it is still not high-DPI aware, and by now I suspect it will never be. (Not with a Windows 7 at 150 % display, in any case ; maybe the problem does not exist on Windows 8 or 10, I don’t know).

    3. mikef90000 said on June 6, 2017 at 1:08 am

      Agree that some aspects of FF bookmark management are rudimentary, but at least they have Folders AND Separators. A Stylish style lets me fit 15+ folders onto my bookmark bar without being a damn CSS expert.

      I haven’t found out yet if other mainstream browsers are capable of this kind of layout. Something to consider when FF ESR v52 dies ….

    4. ams said on June 5, 2017 at 11:55 pm

      I use & recommend “LinkMan” bookmarks manager ( ) and, FYI, it has been reviewed in a ghacks article quite a while back ( )

      Although I paid/registered my copy of LinkMan, I’ve never bothered updating it beyond v6.8.0.62 ~~ does everything I could ask for. Across a decade, it has stood as one of my “cherished” utilities.

      LinkMan’s database provides a “Notes” field for each bookmark record. THAT is where I store the username / password (and email address used ) account details for my myriad online accounts.

  4. brian said on June 5, 2017 at 4:55 pm

    $11 a year? Pocket is free..

  5. Doc said on June 5, 2017 at 2:35 pm

    “…deal for $35.000 US Dollars.” I think you meant “$35,000 US Dollars” – “$35.000” is thirty-five dollars (plus an extra zero).

    1. TelV said on June 5, 2017 at 3:54 pm

      Not necessarily. On this side of the Pond anything figure after a comma represents cents. Therefore €35,00 is thirty-five euros or dollars or whatever currency you wish to quote whereas €3.500,23 is three-thousand, five-hundred euros and 23 cents.

  6. goddert said on June 5, 2017 at 2:26 pm

    I use Pinboard since its beginnings I don’t remember exactly … maybe 10 years.
    In those years there were literally one or two downtimes. No hassle with ads, privacy or anything else. But on the other site there wasn’t neither an evolution of the service. In the beginning some but the last years nada. Some, like me, prefer it this way, others not. I’m fully satisfied with the service and hope it remains this way (and never goes away). Anyway the owner lives quite well with its service (he also documented on its blog how much profit this kind of service does)
    As written before there exist a lot of extensions (main browsers) and some nice Rest-APIs (look on Github) to access and maintain your bookmarks from the command line or an application.

    If you read the pinboard blog you can read a lot about its history

  7. AAA said on June 5, 2017 at 2:11 pm

    Hehe… It was just too delicious for everybody’s taste! :D

  8. Yuliya said on June 5, 2017 at 11:25 am

    Social bookmarking.. eh, it’s hard enough to deal with 7500+ bookmarks locally, let alone adding some delay due to the online nature. They really have this on their website “Pinboard is a fast, no-nonsense bookmarking site for people who value privacy and speed” which is quite a bold claim I might say. Nothing offers more privacy than my local bookmarks manager and nothing is faster than localhost. So.. yeah, nothankyou. Services like this one or Pocket, they just don’t seem useful or convenient at all. They’re just data aggregators, yuck.

    Hey, new logo? (:

    1. Robert said on June 5, 2017 at 12:18 pm

      Just check Pinboard, I wouldn’t say it’s a bold claim. The site is really lightweight, absent of any ads or social features. It does looks a little ascetic but there are css addons (f.e. “Pinboard style” for Chrome) that improves it look. Still, privacy and content is highly valued on Pinboard. There is also a lot of 3rd party tools – browser addons or mobile clients. I love Pinboard, after using all those Google Bookmarks, XMarks and Delicious.

      1. SFd said on June 5, 2017 at 7:48 pm

        Pinboard has been
        a GREAT bookmarking resource for me,
        in the last 8-10 years.

        Simple, fast, reliable.

        And no – I have _no relationship_ with the developer.
        It’s simply a super tool for my bookmarks,
        and I love it!.

        Highly recommended…

    2. Martin Brinkmann said on June 5, 2017 at 11:48 am

      Yes, thought it was time ;)

      1. Michael McConnell said on June 5, 2017 at 4:43 pm

        Martin, when will the new website page format become active? I know you were working on it a while ago. I thought it looked really good (minus the cut off pictures).

      2. Martin Brinkmann said on June 5, 2017 at 5:25 pm

        Coming, Daniel was on a long vacation so things got delayed a little bit.

      3. Sören Hentzschel said on June 5, 2017 at 1:09 pm

        > Yes, thought it was time ;)

        But Martin, it’s also time for a high resolution logo. ;) You should really upload a larger version of your new logo because it’s a nice logo but still terrible on modern displays. The number of users with HiDPI displays is increasing, it affects a lot of people. If you don’t want to waste bandwidth you can use the srcset attribute of the img tag. It’s supported by all modern browsers and old browsers ignore this attribute. So you just have to use the old src attribute AND the new srcset attribute and all users are happy. If you have questions you can send me an e-mail. :)

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