Library 101, One Week in – and that Hulu Thing

Library 101Michael Porter and I have been extremely pleased about the response to our Library 101 project so far. The video? Seven days in, it’s been viewed 11,200 times, and counting. The Facebook Page? 3157 fans and counting. Our Library 101 website with 23 essays? Lots of activity there as well.

And for the most part, response has been very positive. Sure, some of you loved the video and the essays … others, not so much – fair enough. So why do I say “positive?”

Because our goal with this project is being met – people are starting conversations about the changing face of librarianship and the future. In Facebook, at our Project site, and on other blogs and websites, too. Have we hit our mark so far? You bet. We hope those conversations continue, and grow into real change for libraries.

Interestingly, there’s a group of you that have questioned why we included Hulu, of all things, on our 101 list, so I thought I’d start up a conversation about that particular item.

Here’s what our 101 page says about Hulu and other multimedia tools: “Heard of new media tools and services, like iTunes (58), Netflix (59), Amazon (60), Hulu (61), and YouTube (62)? Yep – if you haven’t already, be sure to learn them like the back of your hand. Because you WILL be (more likely, ARE) getting questions about them! Even better, gain some in-depth understanding of these services so you, say, know the difference between YouTube and (63), for example.”

We didn’t actually focus on specific tools (though I can see why some would think so – Hulu’s #61 on the list, after all). The goal of that section wasn’t so much on individual tools, but more about understanding the differences between the tools, and what the future holds for that content.

Why? A couple of reasons. First of all, it’s to help to our patrons:

  • It’s important to be familiar with different search tools (and Hulu is a niche multimedia search tool)
  • It’s also important to know where to access content your library doesn’t own. For example, if a patron wants to watch the second season of I Dream of Jeannie – you might not own it, but it’s free to view on Hulu.

The second reason services like Hulu, iTunes, Netflix, etc were included brings up a slowly growing dilemma for libraries.

Hulu claims to make more money through online ads for a tv show than traditional broadcast companies make with traditional commericals (heard at a presentation by Hulu). That’s a game-changer for broadcast programming. Combine that with Hulu getting more licenses for streamed content, Netflix going all digital, iTunes doing the same, and the fact that most of these services are already subscription-based, or are rumored to be thinking about a subscription-based model … what does that leave libraries with?

Nothing. That is, nothing physical to check out in the library. No DVDs (which I’m guessing will be disappearing as multimedia content shifts to primarily online access). These companies – at least right now – don’t seem to be interested in working with libraries. They’re going after individuals.

At the very least, libraries need to begin working with these corporations to help set up organizational licensing and check-out models for libraries (because if they aren’t subscription-based yet, they will be). And that really only begins to scrape the surface of emerging online content (ie., do you catalog it? Include it in our digital collection? can patrons comfortably watch multimedia content in our libraries? Etc).

So again – thank you guys so much for watching, reading … and starting these important conversations! The goal is to move libraries forward, one step at a time. And I’m pretty confident we can do it. What a fun time to be a librarian!

Library 101 – New Video, Song, and Resource has Launched!

Library 101 has launched! There are a few things you should know about the project:

But even better than watching the video, listening to the song, or reading an essay is this – please participate by commenting! Let us know what YOU think is a “Library 101″ for your library – what do you think librarians need to know to succeed? Tell us in the comments attached to each essay!

Thank you, Anythink Libraries!

Yesterday, I spoke at TechFest for Anythink Libraries in the Denver metro area. Cool place! They have completely re-worked their library brand, they have dumped Dewey, and are quickly picking up speed learning about technology (just the fact that their staff inservice day was called “Techfest” is a testament to that!). Keep an eye on this library – they’re doing some pretty cool things.

It was a fun presentation to do for a dynamic group of people. So thanks, Anythinkers!

Ten Things to Think about when Designing Digital Experiences

I recently did my first guest post at another blog! Go check out Ten Things to Think about when Designing Digital Experiences at the Open Forum blog from American Express.

From the article: “Visitors to your digital space don’t want to think about interacting with your website. They want to—quickly and easily—make a purchase, find information, or have fun. It helps if they can be engaged and enchanted in the process. How can we facilitate this type of digital experience? These ten tips are a great place to start…”

Go visit the article to read my 10 tips (or just buy the book if you haven’t yet :-) ) … and comment there! I’m curious to see what happens.

New Song/Video Announcement and Call for Participation!

Read all about it here! Or just read this … remember that song/video Michael Porter and I created last year? Well… we’re at it again – with Library 101!

Here’s what Michael says:

“Getting into this video is actually really easy. Simply take and share a picture of YOU posing with a 0 and a 1! (Tagging it with library101 on flickr will be really helpful). We even have the flickr group linked above [ok, I linked it here] where you can put your 101 pictures. So c’mon! Do it and get just a little bit famous! Your family and friends will love finding you pop up in the video (and maybe even your coworkers?)! Put your kids in it! How about the family dog!? And you know grandma loves the library too, riiight? :) The most interesting your submission the more it will be featured, so get creative!

Look for the song and video in October of 2009 (debuting at a special “Connecting Through “Lights, Cameras & Action” session at the Internet Librarian Conference in Monterrey, California).”

Now all Michael and I have to do is this:

  • write words for the song
  • Create and record the music
  • Somehow fly Michael to Kansas to record the song and shoot some video
  • Get Michael back to Seattle so he can video edit like a madman
  • collaborate on a multimedia presentation for Internet Librarian like you’ve never seen before…

Whew! I’m already getting psyched!

Pic courtesy of Libraryman