Great post by Ann Arbor District Library Director Josie Parker on two years in the life of AADL.org.
In my Web 2.0 talks, I usually get the question about letting staff publish blog posts directly to the Web. Wait! Shouldn’t they be proofed (well, yes) and shouldn’t a manager sign off on each one — or maybe a committee? Not at AADL. Check out Josie’s words on trust:
We trust our staff, and we know that when we expect the best of people that is usually what we get. Allowing staff to post in an unmoderated fashion has worked well and they produce great content. We have had only one incident of profanity posted on the site by a patron and that was during the first quarter after launch. We post all comments from patrons and our responses directly on the site in a searchable database. 96 staff members have contributed unmoderated posts and content to the site. Our rules are simple. Keep it factual, simple, direct and about library related business.
Well said. As we move toward more channels of open conversations via social tools, wouldn’t it be a best practice to expect the best of people and trust them? Could that be the most important practice?