Category Archives: LIS Weblogs Rule!

Green Today, Green Tomorrow at Moraine Valley

There is a new blog at Moraine Valley Community College that is sure to inspire other similar blogs at other colleges.

The Moraine Valley Library is excited to announce the a new blog, Green Today, Green Tomorrow as part of the library’s One Book, One College initiative in conjunction with the college’s larger Sustainability Initiative. This new blog is available at:
“We hope that this blog will be a point of connection between the college community, the sustainability efforts on campus, and the educational opportunities that are part of the One Book program,” commented Troy Swanson, librarian, who coordinates the One Book program.

What a perfect match: blogging, “one book, one college” initiatives and going green. :-)

Evaluating Weblogs: Handout

(I realized some of the old TTW content was lost in the move. I’ll be posting a few downloads, etc to get them back up. This was a handout I used in blogging workshops 2005-2007))

Blogger’s Toolkit: Evaluating LIS Weblogs

Use Librarian’s Tools:

This is similar to evaluating sites for reference and inclusion on subject list. Questions to ponder when adding blogs to your aggregator or recommending them to colleagues:

• Author: Who is the blog author? Is that information easily accessible? Where do they work?

• Purpose: What’s the mission or goal of the blog? Is it stated? Is it a commercial venture masquerading as an informative site?

• Currency: How often are posts made? When was the last one?

• Objectivity: Is there a bias present?

• Depth: What’s the scope or level of substance? Are the posts essays? Links to other blogs that might be better?

Dr. Laurel Clyde, Weblogs & Libraries 2004:

Clyde addresses similar criteria as above and includes Web specific concerns:

• Does the blog have an appropriate format?

• Is it well organized?

• How attractive are the pages? The front page? The archives?

• Is it easy to navigate? Can you find your way back to the top page easily?

• Does it work in all browsers on all platforms?

• Has it been usability tested? Does it meet accessibility guidelines such as section 508?

• Do the links work and do they seem relevant?

• Is the order of postings useful? (Reverse chronological? Chronological? By subject?)

• Is there a method of interacting with the author? Comments? E-Mail? IM?

• Is there an RSS feed and is it easy to find? Does it work?

(Clyde, 2004, Weblogs and Libraries, Chandos Publishing, 28-31)

MS Avatar IconNew Technologies: LIS Weblogs
Created by Michael Stephens
This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-Share Alike License. To view a copy of this license, visit or send a letter to Creative Commons, 559 Nathan Abbott Way, Stanford, California 94305, USA.

Download the PDF here : Evaluating LIS Blogs

How to be “famous” (wink wink, nudge nudge)

Karen Schneider has an insightful post up at FRL:

There are some gems:

EveDon’t let ambition turn you into Eve Harrington. Remember All About Eve, where an ingenue claimed to be Margo Channing’s biggest, bestest fan, then walked all over her? Let your friendships be sincere, and don’t use people or filch their ideas and then “forget” to acknowledge them.

On the flip side, some people will latch on to you for no other reason than you’re well-known and you’re useful to them. Don’t worry, they’ll disappear when your star fades.

Some stuff needs to stay unsaid. When you’re highly visible, a little self-awareness and discretion go a long way. So-and-so at Your Place Of Work may be a creep or a jerk, or your boss may have done you seriously wrong, but ask yourself if you’d want to read tell-all blog posts where these people listed their takes on your shortcomings. (This reminds me of a time when my sister and I fumed to an older friend how our mother was making us nutty, and she replied with a grin, “You’re probably doing the same to her.” Oh.)mSimilarly, you may be in the throes of a personal or professional meltdown and feel the need to share the details with several million of your closest colleagues, but consider carefully how much of your life you want to share in perpetuity — as in, like, forever.

When I teach blogging in my classes, we talk about keeping perspective and keeping some things unsaid. We also discuss blogging ethics, which Karen has touched on before. I agree with Karen, the web’s memory is long and deep.

Don’t miss the whole post!

TTW’s Year in First Sentences

A nice meme to cap the year via Kathryn Greenhill:

December: Last night in LIS701: Introduction to Library and Information Science, we discussed our five “context” books.

November: Have you seen these jobs open at the Public Library of Charlotte Mecklenburg County?

October: I was honored to be asked by Brian Kelly to write a guest post for his blog UK Web Focus.

September: What a great way to welcome students back to the university library!

August: I keep coming back to this post “I didn’t get an MLS to do that.”

July: I’ve been watching for the first reports of iPhones accessing library Web resources.

June: TTW Guest Author Dr. Kate Marek: In keeping with Michael’s tradition in TTW, I’d like to use my posting opportunity to call your attention to a fascinating new technology that has just been unveiled.

May: TTW Guest Author Lee LeBlanc: This offer came about because of this. I started talking to Michael about some pretty serious (serious to me that is) ideas I have about libraries, information, college students, and leadership.

April: Wowza but time flies! Thanks to all the folks who read and comment — and inspire me!

March:Please vote for Jim Rettig for ALA president on March 15.

February: It’s true! Jaap and Erik are coming!

January: I’m a tad dumb-founded over this…

(Disclaimer: I included a little bit more than one sentence in some to give better context – did I violate the meme? Also, I didn’t count Flickr “Blog This” entries and the like because those didin’t include my own words (or official TTW guest author words..))

What Community Do You Want To Create?

One of the foundations of my dissertation was an analysis of virtual communities and the theories concerning information behavior and exchange within them. This post from the Church of the Customer Blog was most interesting:

The authors identify four types of communities online:


Where does the Biblioblogosphere fit in? I’ve always called it a “Community of Practice” after the work of Henri & Pudelko, who presented a concise, useful typology for virtual communities back in 2003, comprised of four distinct categories and descriptions of the exchanges that occur within them:

Community of interest – Information exchange about a topic

Goal-oriented community of interest – Sharing of diverse perspectives and production of objects commissioned by the mandate.

Learner’s community – Participation to the realization of a collective educational project.

Community of practice – Professional practice development through sharing knowledge among members of a professional community

What community do you want to create? What communities are you a part of?

TTW Mailbox: Save Our Small Libraries – A Blog from Indiana

Save Our Library

Dear Michael:

I want to tell you about my new blog. Aside from the standard issues that Librarians face here in Indiana we have a new one that has the potential for disastrous consequences for small public libraries here in Indiana.

A large issue, which I feel is being played down by some, is the consolidation of all public libraries in the state. Few Librarians and taxpayers alike feel that this is going to be a beneficial change. Currently there are 238 libraries. The consolidation of public libraries would mean that there are 92.

Somehow I got the bright idea of starting a blog to effectively disseminate the information that was blowing through my Inbox everyday. There simply was no place to gather all of the relevant information and opinions in one tidy little spot for all to see and comment upon.

Stephen Boggs

Stephen – great to hear about your new blog! Keep the information coming. I’m sure it will be helpful to Indiana Librarians – and all librarians who may face uncertain changes as well.

Stephen is director of the New Carlisle Library:

Some Quick & Dirty Tips for Bibliobloggers

I was just IMing with a trusted colleague and we hit on the influx of librarian and library blogs of late. I was reminded of some notes I made before a talk about blogging last spring. If you are just starting out, here are some things you might want to ponder:

A personal blogging mission statement: what are your goals? Your focus? It doesn’t have to be huge but it’s a good step to take.

Your blogging voice will develop over time – but be true to yourself and it will come faster.

Some folks don’t take to blogging after trying it. That’s ok. Write a sign off post and find another tool for your creativity.

Play nice. Cite your inspirations. Have fun.

Great Example of Conference Blogging!

Clare Leibfarth, Medical Librarian at the Affinity Medical Center Doctors Campus in Massillon, Ohio writes:

Would the readers of the Tame the Web be interested in learning about the conference blog for the Joint Chapter MLA Meeting in Omaha?

This morning I posted an “interview” with MLA President Mark Funk. Previous posts (there are 33) include everything from conference program notes to travel tips to foodie updates. I’ll be taking my laptop and camera with me to Omaha and will be posting “live” from the conference. We will also have a number of conference blog correspondents who will be reporting on the conference proceedings. We’ll also be setting up a conference photo gallery and folks will be posting photos to Flickr.

Mark Funk’s presidential priorities include a commitment to increasing use of social media in association business. We’ve been doing this for a while in the Midwest Chapter!

Thanks for the note Clare! Folks interested in conference blogging click through and take a look at a great example. What an easy way to provide ongoing content and generate online interest before, during and after a conference.