Please zip over and read my post about Flickr at ALA TechSource.
I ask that you do not make any spur-of-the-moment, reactionary decisions, Flickr’ing Librarians! What I sincerely hope will not happen is the libraries and associations that have started using Flickr will abandon the site because they are scared… come on! Don’t let this type of e-mail campaign derail you. Look at the big picture of how this site and many others are used and can benefit your online presence. Let’s teach our users about the good and bad of online communities, BUT LET’S NOT just close the door and lock it!
What a great collection of essays and blog posts…wonderful content. Take a look:
Topics include MySpace, social networking, blogs, etc. Thanks Danah!
More innovations from the Ubiquitous Librarian:
On the benefits of using You Tube’s channels:
I wanted to experiment with creating a video community, rather than just a listing of tutorials on the library web site. From observation, students don’t use or know how to navigate the library site, so why bury video clips on there?
An Abramism via a recent email:
“Blocking MySpace teaches kids as many good searching and internet safety skills as banning roads does teaching kids road crossing safety.” Stephen Abram
Brian Kenney has a wonderful editorial in the June SLJ on DOPA:
Yes, here we go again. A “quick fix” that we’re not asking for, which won’t work, and which subverts the real purpose of schools and libraries: educating young people. No matter where you come down on the whole MySpace-in-libraries debate, do you really want your library locked in a “technobubble,” cut off from the evolving Internet?
Fred Stutzman, Phd student at UNC Chapel Hill, posts on social sites, including this bit of wisdom:
Social networking for the sake of social networking just doesn’t cut it. Put simply, we want more from SNS-enabled sites than association. If we’re going to invest our time into a SNS site, make it worth our while. Make it a game, make it entertaining, make it useful – but don’t expect us to come if you think its enough to browse our friends profiles.
I like Facebook etc BUT I am enamored of Flickr and LastFM. These sites let me do stuff, meet people, and more… I love that fact that I can guage just how much Fleetwood Mac I listen to or what photos people really like!
Cleck the link above or check it out at the Library Loft myspace page! This is an excellent example of involving teens, using new technologies and building community. What is YOUR library doing with teens and technology?
David Warlick posts:
MySpace now has 72 million users. That is larger than the populations of 213 countries. Perhaps we could deal with the social online networks thing if we thought of it for what it is — MyNation. This is their digital nation. They are citizens, and they’ve never been taught digital civics.
(see the post for notes)
Might librarians also be thinking about teaching digital civics? I think so!
Libraryman ponders how we might define MySpace to folks that aren’t that versed in social software. Take a look:http://www.libraryman.com/blog/archives/000221.html
…Many libraries have recently began creating MySpace accounts as well, in order to show their (often times) younger users that they are a readily available resource to them not just as a physical institution, but as an engaged member of their “electronic community”. These outreach efforts have generally been very successful and well received. As people seek more and more information via electronic means, it important for us to consider how best to meet our users in an effective manner. While creating an institutional account may not be something every library will decide to do, researching MySpace is well advised across the industry.
Well done Libraryman!
Am I saying that free things like MySpace, Flickr, Blogs, Wikis, etc are bad? No way! But I am saying that these new services need to fit into your library’s plan… don’t just set one up to “see what happens” or “just for kicks.” Think through a few things first:
What does your library plan to offer using this new service?
What are the library’s goals for establishing this new service?
Can the advertising be minimized by paying a fee or by choosing certain categories?
Does the service meet the library’s strategic goals?
Who’s going to maintain this new service?
And most important: if it’s successful – what’s next?
What a perfect list for planning forays into social software!