Not a Destination

I’ve been working on an upcoming presentation, and I was looking for a way to discuss the concept of web as platform and how that might impact libraries… and came up with this:

Before Web 2.0

Before web 2.0, people came to the library to do stuff at the library – they came in to check out books, read magazines, do research, etc. Even with computer use and the “old web,” they still came to the library and probably thought they were doing stuff at the library. The library was a destination – a place to visit.
After Web 2.0

But with the advent of web 2.0 and especially with the concept of web as platform, this has changed. Now, people come to the library to access the web… and then [digitally] go somewhere else. They aren’t really using the library’s resources (well, other than the internet line). They possibly think of themselves as going somewhere else – be that Runescape or Facebook, YouTube or various blogs.In this emerging model, the library is no longer a destination.Instead, the library provides access to a destination… outside of the library!

Just a little shift to ponder!

Education Institute Classes

Do you guys know about the Education Institute online courses and seminars? They frequently put together a great set of online sessions (and your truly sometimes presents one, too). here’s what they have going on this fall:

Technology Tuesday Series

Check em out!

Facebook and Libraries

Ryan Deschamps at The Other Librarian recently posted about Facebook and libraries. It’s a thought-provoking article – go read it! Here are some tidbits from the article:

“So let me start with the Facebook library search application. It is
fine, but my opinion is that few people besides librarians are going to
add the applications to their profiles. The technology is Web 2.0, but
the strategy is still Library 1.0.”


“… the model is still, “I am librarian. I can help. Come to me (ie. my
Facebook page) and I will serve.” The applications, though offering
marginally better service for little cost, are not taking advantage of
what Facebook offers its clients.”

Then Ryan goes on to discuss his thoughts on what might work for libraries in Facebook. I agree with him – sticking the same ole library 1.0 stuff (in this case, a bad ILS search interface) into a 2.0 tool (i.e., Facebook) doesn’t make one hip, cool, or popular. Another example? Putting excruciating bibliographic instruction seminars on the intricacies of database searching on YouTube. I’ve seen some of those. They aren’t watched.

But if putting the traditional library into 2.0 tools doesn’t work, well then… what does? From Ryan again: “A Facebook application should be something your average person wants to show their friends.” He goes on: “In the end, the reason students will say they do not want to see
librarians and educators on Facebook is that the culture of Libraries
clashes with the culture of Facebook … If we can establish rapport with the Facebook community, we will matter
to them.” Ryan then provides thoughts on the Facebook culture.

So… how do you learn a new tool’s culture? By PLAYING with it. Experiencing it. Using it. Play with Facebook. Gather 100 friends and see what happens. Connect to some Facebook apps, join some Facebook groups. Poke people. Browse – see who’s using Facebook in your neck of the woods. Then figure out what you can add that those people (your customers, after all) might find interesting or useful.

10 Questions to Ask New Administrators

Pretend for a second that your organization is hiring a new administrator – a library director, assistant/deputy director, or something similar. What 2.0 questions might you ask? Here’s a list of 10 questions from the Logic+Emotion blog to ask a marketing agency executive:

  1. Do you read blogs. Which ones?
  2. Do you have a personal blog? What’s it about?
  3. Do you participate in at least one social network? Which one?
  4. Have you ever uploaded a video online? What did you use to do it?
  5. What’s your favorite search engine. Why?
  6. Have you ever used an online classified service like craigslist?
  7. Besides making phone calls—how else do you use your mobile phone?
  8. Have you ever registered a domain name?
  9. Do you use social bookmarks or tagging?
  10. Do you use a feed reader of some sort? Which one? Why?

The author goes on to explain: “You are looking for a sense of understanding that only comes with
experiencing something for yourself … It’s not important
to have done everything in this list—but it’s critical to have done
SOME of it.” The goal is to find a basic level of understanding, to find (in this case) a marketing executive that gets new media, new media outlets, and understands how customers digitally interact.

Now – think back to that library administrator. How might he/she answer these questions? Better yet – HOW would you want these questions answered?

Something to think about…