Beautiful images make great conversation pieces on social bookmarking sites like Pinterest, but for some Web users, bookmarking sites are also places to store information and memories. Clipboard is a highly practical bookmarking tool that captures not only images, but also the accompanying text. Launched in beta in October 2011, the virtual archive opened to the public on Thursday with a handful of social features for users and developer tools for publishers and other third parties.
The bookmarking tool works something like a screen capture. Normally, you’d hit the “print screen” button on your PC keyboard or “Command-Shift-3” on your Mac to get a copy of your Web browser that you can save to your desktop or paste into another program to edit. If you hit “Command-Shift-4” on your Mac, you can highlight the part of the screen that you want to capture and save it directly to your desktop.
With Clipboard, you don’t have to paste or save anything. Once you install the plug-in on your browser, you just hit the icon and hover over the part of the screen that you want to capture. The clipping will automatically appear in your Clipboard account. You can type in notes, hashtags, or Twitter handles on the bottom to make it searchable. The images can be shared with the rest of the community; on Facebook, Twitter, or email; shared with a select group, or kept private. You can also embed your clips on your website or blog, which is an incredible time-saver.
The network’s newest features make it a little more like Pinterest and other visual bookmarking networks. From the Clipboard team:
Boards – Users can now have collections of their clips created automatically based on the way each clip is tagged. Users can personalize each board with a personalized title, be publicly or privately viewed, and can be individually liked (via Facebook) or tweeted.
Developer and Publisher Tools – Clipboard now allows people to embed a Clipboard button on their website allowing visitors (with or without a Clipboard account) to easily capture part of a page with a single click.
People – Users can connect their Clipboard account to other social networks, invite and import friends, follow people and topics, view who follows them, and get recommendations on other new users to follow.
Likes – It’s now easy to see what clips you, and others, have liked on Clipboard. As always, privacy is a top priority for Clipboard, so only clips that are liked and public are revealed.
So far, the tool seems to be more personal than viral. During the testing phase, the Clipboard team found that only 20 percent of the clips are published, while 80 percent are left private. Closely matching the number of public clips were the tagged clips at 22 percent. Users chose to annotate 55 percent of their clips, proving that organization is an important component of the tool.
When members do share their clips, they often include full-size photographs and longer articles that would be too large or too wordy for other visual bookmarking sites. If a pin won’t hold it, maybe it’s time to try a paperclip.
Image by ultimax via Shutterstock.