Reading Lots of Blogs

Meredith, in her Survey of the Biblioblogosphere: Attitudes and Behaviors, says “I don’t know how those of you who read more than 200 blogs manage to do it! I can barely keep up with 120 blogs (many of which I rarely read in their entirety). I guess there is a different between subscribing to a blog and actually reading all of the posts.”

Right now, I’m “reading” 174 feeds. But here’s what I really do:

  • “Keeping up” with 174 feeds doesn’t mean in-depth reading of those feeds
  • Some I browse through quickly
  • Some, I think “not interested” and move on to the next post in my feed reader
  • Some are photo blogs – I look at the photograph, think “cool” and move on
  • Some I spend more time on, read, click through the links, respond to (in Meredith’s post’s case), etc.
  • Some feeds don’t update very often, so reading them isn’t all that hard
  • Some posts are about the same thing that 20 other posts will be about, so I can skim/skip them

Generally, I read those 174 feeds the same way I flip through a magazine or a newspaper – I skim the headlines and the text for something interesting. If I find something, I stay for a while. If not, I move on.

Cell Phones and Rock Concerts

I just attended Kansas City’s Rock the Light VI concert – it was fun! Some highlights:

  • The bands on the main stage – they rocked
  • The satellite stage bands (I was in one of them) Go here for more pics of my day
  • Getting free tickets (complimentary tickets for bands playing on the satellite stages)
  • The venue – Starlight is an awesome place for a concert!
  • Raising $23,000 for hurricane victims (Third Day donated $10,000, and challenged the crowd to match that – the crowd gave $13,000)
  • Cell phone silliness!

Another sms shotAnd since this is a library technology blog, I’ll talk about the cell phone part. Starlight’s main stage includes a big screen hanging above the stage. Concert footage is usually shown on the screen, which is pretty cool. But cell phone users can dial 99777 and leave a text message that displays on the big screen, for everyone to see. Do you think the kids that attended the concert used that? Oh yeah – messages streamed nonstop the whole day. I took a pic – you can see examples of text messaging in it (bottom of the big screen). Cool shot of the drummer, too…

Some would call this a cool way to interact, to be part of the performance, or to enhance the concert experience. And it probably did all those things. At the same time, I found it sorta odd… example: during a slow part of a song, kids would scream when someone posted a message like “scream if you live in Liberty.” The two things (text message and performance) didn’t fit well together. Certainly gotta be odd for the band, if nothing else!

But either way, kids had and used their cell phones in a big way. In fact, rather than holding up lighters, Third Day asked everyone to hold up cell phones – I was awed in all geekiness at that point – 8000 cell phones glowing at once was pretty cool to see.

How does this relate to libraries? Well… those kids with cell phones – can they access your library via IM and/or sms/text messaging? Do they have the phone number to the reference desk? Are these on one handy card that you can pass out to library patrons?