Thursday, 26 August 2010

My final post

Wow, it's the end of an epic Cam 23 journey. My favourite 'things' were Flickr, LibraryThing, YouTube and Twitter. I also really enjoy using Wordle, although technically that wasn't one of the 'things'. The only one I disliked was LinkedIn, and the others all populate a happy middle ground.

I use many of them in my everyday life anyway, and now our library is starting to use more and more of them too. I think Web 2.0 is definitely changing libraries and it has been great to be able to learn about the different social media options available. It is important to keep on top of new developments so you can always provide a top-class service for your readers.

Thanks for this interesting and unique opportunity. That's all folks!

That wiki thing

I typed 'wiki' into wikipedia (a.k.a. the font of all knowlege) and this is what it says:
"A wiki ( /ˈwɪki/ WIK-ee) is a website that allows the easy creation and editing of any number of interlinked web pages via a web browser using a simplified markup language or a WYSIWYG text editor. Wikis are typically powered by wiki software and are often used to create collaborative wiki websites, to power community websites, for personal note taking, in corporate intranets, and in knowledge management systems."
Wikipedia is useful but not 100% accurate, I often use it to find information or an explanation of something as it is quick and easy to navigate.
As for using wikis in library work, at the Education library we have our own wiki, which we use to compile information and lists. Particularly useful is a 'things to do' section that has a list of tasks that need to be completed. Colleagues can cross things off once they're done and it's all in one place so there's no confusion.

Monday, 23 August 2010

Podcasting & YouTube

I've listened to podcasts and visited YouTube before so I know my way around them already. The majority of podcasts I have downloaded to my iPod have been film-related and I mainly use YouTube to look at new movie trailers, so it was good to look at them both from a professional point of view to see how they could be of benefit to libraries.

The library podcasts that I listened to and viewed all seemed very useful and informative. I wouldn't use podcasting myself, as I'm more of a writer than a talker, so personally I'd be more comfortable using things like Twitter and Facebook. However, for those who have the gift of the gab, I'd imagine it could be a new and fun way to market your services to readers.

I'll leave you with Monty Python's 'Gorilla Librarian' sketch, which I found on YouTube:

Google Docs

I haven't used Google Docs before but I found it easy peasy to get the hang of. It's so simple to use and such a helpful tool that it makes you wonder why it wasn't available before. I think it's a really useful way for people to collaborate on projects as you only have a single document rather than multiple ones so you are never unsure as to which version is the current one. I also like that you can share different types of documents, like presentations, spreadsheets and drawings. I used it to create the fantastic(!) stick-man picture shown here, which I then sent to a colleague.

Sharing your piece of work with others is super-fast too, just enter their email address and they will receive a direct link to it. I think it could be really useful for librarians as a way to work together with colleagues on joint projects. As that meerkat off the tele says: "Simples!"

Friday, 13 August 2010

Social Media Marketing

So, marketing our libraries services using social media. Doing some research online, I found that companies and organisations are unsure as to whether this is a worthwhile venture. A selection of their arguments against social media marketing include:
  • It doesn’t generate profit
  • It can be unpredictable
  • It is too easy to become addicted and wastes time
Some of the points in favour of it are:
  • It increases website traffic
  • It is both free and entertaining
  • It gets the message out faster to a huge audience
For libraries, I think it's important to connect with your readers and to be able to inform them of your services. The new avenues of social media enable you to do this and because they are so popular, I think they're a really useful way to interact with and update people.

From zero to hero: here comes Zotero

Well, after initially struggling to find the Zotero icon (my Firefox persona is quite dark so I couldn't see it!) I managed to get to grips with using it. I wish I had this when I was doing my university degree, as it would have made referencing a whole lot easier. My system of writing down references, losing them, having to look back through everything I'd consulted, before finding them again, seems a bit daft now...

I think Zotero would be of great use in the library for constructing reading lists for the students. It would make this a quicker and easier task. It has also been really helpful to learn how to use it because we sometimes get asked about it and now I'll actually know what people are talking about! Thank you Cam 23 =)

Friday, 23 July 2010

LinkedIn: Facebook for the American businessman

(Must stop thinking of Link from the Legend of Zelda video game whenever I see the word LinkedIn.)

I watched this YouTube video for a simple explanation of what LinkedIn is all about;

I have to admit, I'm not a big fan. It seems like the social networking market has become totally dominated by Facebook, leaving all others in the dark. As a result, there aren't as many people on these other sites, so it's hard to find anyone you know. LinkedIn doesn't look as easy to use an
d seems mainly populated with American businessmen. I'm not sure what the benefits for libraries would be, if more people jumped on the LinkedIn bandwagon then maybe it would be more worthwhile taking part. As it is, I don't think there would be much of an audience to inform and keep in touch with. I'd need more convincing on this one I'm afraid.