Reading Michael’s section about presence and online social networks made me think… there are lots of new, cool online social types of stuff out there. And I know how to use them as an individual. But how can libraries use them? What would that actually look like?
Here’s one idea, sorta shooting off something my library already does. We have subject blogs that focus on local and library content. But what if we took that concept a little further? What if a library developed a localized online social network?”
For example, my library has a fiction Subject Guide, and we have book clubs that do the traditional book club stuff – meetings at our library, reading books and discussing them, and socializing in the process. But how about this as a new paradigm for an online book club: posting a list of books to read on the book club’s blog. Making comments about the books on the blog, or in the comments section of the blog post. Or wiki’ing the comments, and allowing book club “members” to change/add/edit comments. Blogging about the book, with comments on those blog posts. Using a wiki to plan physical social gatherings. Communicating via IM or SMS when some cool, inspiring thing hits you that’s related to your reading. Using Flickr to post actual author events and social gatherings.
Get the idea? Don’t be scared by the idea of some high-falutin’, formalized “Social Network” … It’s about connecting with each other, even when you can’t be physically present.