IL2008: Howard Rheingold Keynote

I’m at Internet Librarian 2008, and waiting to listen to Howard Rheingold, who’s giving the first keynote session this year – cool! Here’s what he said:

Cool – Jane Dysart (conference organizer) actually knows Howard.

In Tokyo in 2000, he noticed people looking at the screens of their cell phones rather than holding them up to their ears.

Somewhere else, he saw a teen look at the screen of his phone, and smiled … then shared it with a friend.

Kids today flock like birds – they show up at the same place at the same time – because of txting

Philippines – riots organized by txting

He wrote the book Smart Mobs

Smart mobs emerge when media amplifies cooperation
… are where the PC was in 1980 and the Internet was in 1990

There have been alot of sms-organized protests, not all of them peaceful

He’s going back through history, explaining how communities organized

[aside – I love how Howard uses himself as a prop in his slides – it’s hilarious!]

Luther’s success again the catholic church was helped in part by the printing press – change was helped along by the new technology of the day

Now he’s talking about companies that work together in new ways, either internally or via an outside community

Open source works because of community

Google and Amazon as examples of companies that opened up their money-making services to others

Ebay and Wikipedia – communities of trust, new forms of community-driven production

Now, we’re seeing a cultural shift – 50% of teenagers have created content on the web

successful companies have created platforms for participation – wikipedia and google are great examples of this

technologies of cooperation and sharing economies
– easy to use
– enable connections
– open – no license needed to publish
– group forming
– self-instructing
– leverage self-interest

He mentioned videoblogs (and flashed Jay Dedman and Ryanne Hodgson on the screen, too – cool)

If you want to keep up, don’t try to keep up with the technologies – instead, keep up with the literacies (not quite sure what he meant there) – his experimental online, collaborative classroom. He invited librarians to join.

IL2008: Digital Marketing – Successful Plans and Organizations

Sarah Houghton-Jan and Aaron Schmidt presented

Outreach – connecting users with librarians – important to highlight the librarians!

Make your library website two-way.
– can people register for library cards?
– can they share their opinion?
– can they have an identity?

Make sure you rlibrary is listed correctly in all the library directories (like LibDex,, etc)

submit your RSS feeds to blog search engines (Feed Submitter is great)
– look at Robin Good’s list of where to submit your blog/feed
– RSS Specifications list of where to submit, too…

make sure you’re listed on maps (wikimapia, etc)

search engine findability: search for different variations of your library’s name, make sure you’re there.
– also buy adwords from google, hire an SEO to help

– list yourself in wifi directories (check the presentation for a list later on)

Community website presence
– list in places like, eventful, etc.

LibraryThing Local – they have a subsite called Local – book events are listed
– they have a “do you work here” link and you can take ownership of the info

presence on local websites, see who’s linking to you

Social Review Websites – yelp (you can claim your business in yelp, too)
– when someone says good stuff about you, USE IT

phone numbers – make sure you’re listed correctly (google maps, askcity, yahoo local, etc)

make a/v content findable – make sure it’s listed in blinkx, singingfish, etc

social networking sites – in ning, flickr, etc

find local blogs – blogs by city, blogdigger local, metroblogging, feedmap

… and interact with these people!

local forums and boards, too

facebook flyer ($10 or so for 5000 ads/flyers)

list your staff in expert sites (yahoo answers, ziki, yadda, etc)

push info out via email/rss
– newsletter software
– use those email addresses

wikipedia – make an entry, update an entry

text a librarian – combines sms, im, email, etc – this is cool!!!

Podcast about Designing the Digital Experience

Sarah Long, Director of the North Suburban Library System, interviewed me a couple weeks ago about my book, Designing the Digital Experience: How to Use Experience Design Tools & Techniques to Build Websites Customers Love on her Longshots podcast series (part of the Library Beat blog).

Give it a listen!