Owning my old Delicious Bookmarks… Sadly not today.

I thought I’d take a few minutes to go back and “own” the bookmarks I had put into Delicious since I joined on July 5, 2009, so I could have them on my own website. Sadly I ran into the following message:

We’re sorry, but due to heavy load on our database we are no longer able to offer an export function. Our engineers are working on this and we will restore it as soon as possible.

Hopefully they get things working properly so I can export them one of these days without resorting to more arcane methods to get the data back.

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Chris Aldrich

I'm a biomedical and electrical engineer with interests in information theory, complexity, evolution, genetics, signal processing, IndieWeb, theoretical mathematics, and big history. I'm also a talent manager-producer-publisher in the entertainment industry with expertise in representation, distribution, finance, production, content delivery, and new media.

17 thoughts on “Owning my old Delicious Bookmarks… Sadly not today.”

      1. Chris, I’ve been helping stranded Delicious users reclaim their bookmarks despite the disabled export function. Drop me a line if you need help: Twitter: @dagutierrez

        1. could you please advise how I can contact you for help with this. I don’t do Twitter!

    1. Leandro Barreto says:

      Abandon Ship!

      I’ve just signed up to Pinboard as well with the intention of migrating my bookmarks, but now I can’t get hold of them any more.

  1. Leandro, the problem with doing that is that there’s no (real) guarantee that the cycle won’t just repeat itself with Pinboard! I’m now using IndieWeb principles and just owning all of my bookmarks on my on site and on my own server. Then if they “disappear” I’ve only got myself to blame.

  2. szafranek says:

    Hey Chris,

    I’m very doubtful if the new owners of del.icio.us will restore export functionality, as the service has been going significantly worse with every change of hands. So over the holidays I wrote a script that scraps the (public) bookmarks and saves them in a standard format. You may find it useful, if you still have some links stuck there: https://github.com/szafranek/delicious-exporter.

    1. Thanks for the note Krzysztof, I’ll take a look at it. I’ve also posted a link in the IndieWeb wiki entry for “bookmark“.

    2. Leandro Barreto says:

      Spot on Szafranek! Bookmarks exported and moved somewhere safer. Thanks!

    3. Marcelo says:

      It worked perfectly!!!! Thanks so much szafranek for helping me commit an act of justice.

      Hopefully it helps some newbie like me to say that, since the script outputs an HTML file, one’s own comments with symbols may have messed up the whole code. Then the new service will import bookmarks up to where it finds a tag that doesn’t understand. Don’t blame the script: replace the damn symbols with &lt and &gt respectively.

      1. Marcelo says:

        (The referred less-than and greater-than symbols are missed from my post because -of course!- they are read as HTML by the browser).

  3. Matt Maldre says:

    Five weeks later, and delicious\’ export function is still not working. I\’m halting my use of delicious, and am starting to use Pinboard. At some point, hopefully Delicious will open up the export again, so I can bring all 10,000+ of my archived delicious bookmarks over to Pinboard.

    1. Matt, While I like how Pinboard looks and I hear it’s got a reasonable API, it’s still just another me-too-service like delicious and could potentially go down at any time. Admitted, as a paid service, it’s a bit less likely, but what happens if/when the owner dies or decides to sell it off? I’ve decided that owning all of my bookmarks on my own personal website is really the best (only?) way to go. Other options and thoughts can be found here: http://indieweb.org/bookmark.

      1. aeldron says:

        Hi Chris.

        Indieweb seems like a good alternative if all you want to do is publicly post your bookmarks. I would definitely use my own website if that was all I wanted to do.

        To me a service like Pinboard – and previously Del.icio.us and Diigo when it was free – is a search tool. Browsers do not offer the facility of searching your bookmarks beyond the words on the page’s title. With a service like Pinboard, I can save the links I really need from my Google searches and tag them, probably with the same keywords I used to find them in the first place. Later on, I always know where to find something, I only need to remember a few keywords. It’s like having your own personal Google.

        I use that in combination with Instapaper and Evernote. If it’s something worth keeping I’ll save the whole page to one of those instead. If it’s purely a filtered search result from Google I’ll save those links to Pinboard.

        I’m quite happy to pay a little bit of money for that service. As you said yourself, they are less likely to go bust and disappear with years of your personal data. Which is why I was so desperate to get my data out of Delicious. I won’t get caught off guard again.

        1. Thanks for sharing your workflow; it’s always interesting to see how others use these types of tools. I do post a lot of bookmarks publicly, but I also post far more privately. I use the categories and tags along with WordPress’ built in search to find things pretty easily.

          For saving entire posts, I use PressForward to scrape and save the contents of the page, often pinging the Internet Archive to save an additional copy just in case the original changes/disappears. I used to use Instapaper and then Pocket, but lately have taken to using PressForward’s functionality as a feed reader and Pocket replacement though it wasn’t necessarily made for that purpose.

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