Library 2.0: the Future of Libraries?
This was the title of a presentation I gave to staff at MPOW (my place of work) on [Oct 12]. I’ve posted the Slides on Slideshare. I have to admit I got a lot of inspiration from other presentations I saw on Slideshare, which I credit in mine. I’m afraid it’s a bit dry in comparison – I don’t feel up to professional presenter standards of visual inspiration.
Interesting, though – I see myself as a visual person (no pun intended), but what helps me is the breakdown of ideas into bullet points, and separating out the strands and expressing their relation to each other — which is what I aimed to do in this introduction to Library 2.0:
Start with the technology-based definition I like for its simplicity (“Library 2.0 is Web 2.0 in libraries”), followed by an overview of web 2.0 (conceptually, technically, and practically), followed by the more vague, philosophy-of-service definition of Library 2.0 (or L2 as the “library hipsters” are calling it – is that an oxymoron?). Then a series of examples of Web 2.0 in libraries. Then a short list of objections to the 2.0 “meme.” I finish with a set of stats from that Social Media Revolution video (as it happened we didn’t have internet access -grr!) as an answer to the question “Why should we care?” before reiterating how much sense the Library-2.0-as-a-philosophy-of-service definition actually makes for these changing times, when embracing change sensibly is part of that definition (And in spite of the fact that I wish there were a better term for it).
If I were to do it again, I would add some more explicit slides on my conclusions: Libraries today can and should be a primary place for people to learn about, utilize and perhaps embrace these new trends – since the trends are happening whether we participate or not. If the public library truly is an information portal for the community, then it should be ready to guide people in the safe and sensible and fun and productive new world of 2.0, social media – to say nothing of preparing them for the even braver new world of “Web 3.0″ – the semantic web, etc. I also might want to sing the praises of Linux, open source, and library self-sufficiency.
There are so many tangential issues involved, it get’s overwhelming. I guess that’s why like bullet points.
One thing that I spoke of in Q and A after one of the sessions was the idea that it’s an open question whether or not our community is ready to subscribe to a Twitter feed from the local library. I don’t know. Having said that, I then point out, opening a Twitter account for the library is free, if the time to tweet is not, however minimal that tiem commitment may be.
After this experience one concept I want to explore is “Radical trust is a two way street.” What do you think?
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