This week your intrepid blog editor has been watching an idea spread like wildfire through the librarian blog world, also known as the biblioblogosphere. On Sunday evening, Marcus Banks (NOT the NBA Marcus Banks) posted Why Professional Librarian Journals Should Evolve into Blogs. Here is his idea:
I became firmly convinced that the traditional journal model is antiquated for sharing research and knowledge among librarians. A better course is to develop and nurture excellent blogs, with multimedia capabilities and guaranteed preservation of the postings.
David Rothman picked it up right away Monday and included the slide show that Marcus used to present his librarian blog survey results. (Yikes, my poor old Gateway takes a long time to load this page with the embedded slide show.)
T. Scott was on it by Tuesday early with Editing and Peer Review. Dean Giustini chimed in later in the day with Blogs Destabilize LIS Publishing – But Research.
Then David Rothman posted about it again later in the day with Troubled Tuesday, commenting on T. Scott and Dean Giustini and noting that LibraryStuff and LIS News had also posted the link for their readers.
Talk about a flurry of activity! Read about it yourself. What do you think?
Your intrepid blog editor thinks that for for some librarians like herself, blogs have already replaced professional journals as the primary means of “keeping up” with developments in the field. “What’s the latest and how can it be useful in my library?” just cannot be answered in peer-reviewed journals. The time to publication is too long. I hate to admit it, but the latest issue of JMLA is sitting back in the office on my desk with a bookmark at the Janet Doe lecture, still waiting to be read.
So now that we have a chapter blog, how do we get readers? Karen, our intrepid Communications Committee Chair, asked this question yesterday during our committee meeting via conference call. Well, says your intrepid blog editor, I will be posting this week to ConnectMidwest about this very subject! Because why blog if no one reads!
I snagged two useful posts about this in my feed reader last month:
One tactic that your intrepid blog editor used to increase the visibility of Conference Call 2007 was to shamelessly invite some popular libraryworld bloggers to check out the blog and mention it in their blogs. As I mentioned before, I particularly enjoyed the crossover posts with T. Scott and our MLA Pres.
ARGH! Just as I am trying to figure out Web 2.0, I find out that Web 3.0 is on its way!
I’ve been pondering these issues particularly since the upcoming MLA Educational Webcast is entitled Web 2.0 Principles and Best Practices: Discovering the Participatory Web. I like that phrase “participatory web” as a description, even better than the term “social media” used in the tagline for this blog. Here is the Wikipedia definition: “…a perceived second generation of web-based communities and hosted services (such as social-networking sites, wikis, blogs, and folksonomies) which aim to facilitate creativity, collaboration, and sharing between users.”
During January, there has been considerable discussion about the concept of Web 2.0 and its corollary Library 2.0 in librarian blogs. For a taste of the discussion, sample these posts by David Rothman, John Blyberg, and maybe even try the biting, sarcastic wit of Annoyed Librarian.
Have you seen Dean Giustini’s BMJ editorial Web 3.0 and medicine: Make way for the semantic web? I printed out the PDF and slogged through it this morning. The table contrasting Web 2.0 and Web 3.0 was very useful. If the next big thing will be the semantic web, then I’m all for it. As an ex-cataloger, I have never felt very comfortable with the concept of folksonomies and uncontrolled vocabularies. Just adding more words somehow seems to make things more confusing and searching more difficult. Dean Giustini has linked to a great video explaining the semantic web over at the UBC Academic Search — Google Scholar Blog.
Mostly for fun and curiosity, I set up a Facebook page for myself. Will you be my friend?
My collegian son uses Facebook extensively to communicate with friends on campus and at other universities. But he certainly is not allowing his mother to see his full profile and his message wall. This is understandable and is one of the reasons I wonder how Facebook can be an effective tool in serving our library clients. I’m certainly not alone in my musings. Melissa Mallon over at ACRLog is much younger than I and shares my concerns. Her post is amusingly entitled “Is Facebook this generation’s Rolling Stones?” in reference to the generation gap created between this digital generation and their parents’ generation. Here’s what she says about this generation, “They’re very secretive and protective of their niche, and they just don’t want the adults intruding.” And who can blame them?
That said, I am going to do some more experimenting with Facebook apps. This weekend over at the SLA Blogging Section blog, there is a useful post on Facebook Apps for Librarians. I want to explore some of these.
And my next question is how Facebook is being used as a communication tool among librarians? I use e-mail extensively and I’m not sure if I want to check even one more place for communications…
Today I attended the Breezing Along with the RML session Developing and Marketing an RSS Journal Service for Your Library. Is “attended” is the correct verb? Participated? I’ve never used that online presentation software before and it seemed to work fairly well. We could simultaneously see the presenters, their PowerPoint presentation or internet screen, comments and questions from the participants. I couldn’t read the smallest print on the presentation slides on my screen, however. Having to use the phone for the audio portion of the session seems so awkward to me.
I saw the presentation in Omaha and wanted to listen again so that I could get more details. Taking one of their ideas, I’m setting up a demonstration feed reader account to show to some of my library users. Right now I’m setting it up with the table of contents feeds from the the library’s surgery journals. I’m amazed to find that the Elsevier journals do not seem to have a table of contents feed. Am I missing something here? I might just have to set up a feed from PubMed for those journals. Anyone out there have a better idea?