Social Tools for Your Library

Today I attended one of the pre-conference workshops Social Tools for Your Library by Aaron Schmidt. He covered a lot of tools many of which I’m already familiar with and we’re already using or have plans in the works to use (Myspace, Flickr, Youtube, RSS Feedreaders, Blogs). Either way it’s always good to review old topics and see them in a new light, become rejuvenated about them, and see how others are using them, plus some things we’re not using. There was plenty of food for thought and I walked away with 4 pages of notes. Some things that really stood out (these are a combination of his points and my thoughts about them)

  • Digital Relevance
  • Google is for profit, Libraries are not
  • How many barriers are we putting between us and our patrons?
  • What message do our signs send? – NO CELL PHONES – bad, Step into the Zone, the Cell Phone Zone is in the lobby and stairwells, Please be courteous of others, turn cell phone ringers down or off and conduct conversations in a low tone – good
  • If 90% of MP3 player users have an iPod, why do we even bother with Downloadable Audio?
  • Why are our search screens so complicated? Why don’t they look like Google, just one box? Hello? Ebsco! ugh!
  • Participatory culture
  • Instant Messaging Reference – why aren’t we using this??????
  • Gaming in Libraries – why aren’t we renting video games?
  • Gaming Tournaments for Adults – Dance, Dance Revolution and Guitar Hero
  • Average gamer is 18-35 and Female
  • Carver’s Bay South Carolina’s gaming to literacy program – smart!
  • $11 billion was spent on the gaming industry last year that’s more than books, cd, dvds and mp3s all together!! Why are we missing this boat?
  • Everyone needs to spend at least 10 minutes a day checking out new stuff – I’m gonna up this to 30, there is a lot out there!

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