UCSD (University of California, San Diego) libraries have multiple collections on Flickr

Moments in time, Library exhibits and Library events. Along with organized and labeled collections they, UCSD, have a photo-stream that included over 1,400 images that have been taken and tagged and submitted about the UCSD library, great for browsing.

As I browsed through these collections I noticed each picture had at minimum the tag “UCSD libraries, brownie point of UCSD. Donna Ekart states as rule one in Tech Tips for Every Librarian, “First, tag, tag, and tag again” (2010, p46). By tagging photos with appropriate tags such as location, event, library name, popular acronyms, etc. the library’s photos will be discovered more easily and more often, bringing in a greater recognition to the library and hopefully more patrons to help.

 Fault: there is not enough tagging. Some photos only include the tags “UCSD libraries and UCSD”, they need more tags including: San Diego, California, library, education, architecture (when building pictures) and other descriptive tags about the photo, you can never have too many tags.

UCSD libraries do a great job and being consistent with adding to the Flickr, most recent photos are from Oct. 29, 2012.

I think UCSD is a great model for starting libraries who are looking into using Flickr. They show what a complete profile looks like, they have photo streaming, collections, sets and a gallery. However, I do not see them as a library that has itself mastered the use of Flickr.Still, they have a fun collections to browse through.

Ekart, D. (2010). Tech tips for every librarian. Computers in libraries, 32(4).

Library Social Media…what are your tactics?

Top 5 Social Media Tools for Promoting Library Services

What? Facebook
Why? Reach patrons of multiple ages, mobile accessibility, “Its massive reach provides compelling opportunities to connect with customers, both current and future, through fan pages, news feeds, groups, and throughout the site.” (SEOmoz)
How? Sign up for a group page (not a profile), designate the information that will be posted for your users and others to see and start posting. Posts about common topics, new ideas you want to implement. Using Facebook in this manner allows Libraries to get feedback in the easier way possible and directly from their users.

What? Twitter
Why? Networking in real time. A new tool to become personal with your users. Tweets are limited to 160 characters, requires tweets of significance and informational. IE “SJSU library closed Oct. 8 Columbus day!” (39 characters)
How? Sign up for a twitter account begin adding followers and following others. Read Musings about librarianship on how Twitter can help your library.

What? YouTube
Why? Video promotion
How? Video Blogs – have staff record book reviews of latest books, add a library tour and introduce your staff, invite participation from patrons “What is your favorite book?” and compile them into a video. Video Tours are very effective and allow users to get a feel for your library before they go, you can also put up tutorials on how to use your system. You can also use YouTube as a form of education videos, how many tutorials can you find on YouTube? Millions! I’m sure you can even find one on using YouTube in your Library.

What? Wikipedia
Why? Wikipedia offers a place to build guides for users. Wikis are a great way to keep on top of all the new services or updates happening in the library 

How? Create a Wiki (make sure to have an easy access link to the page) where Library staff can update changes to the library. You can also create a Wiki that patrons can access and add recommendations or even services that maybe a staff member did not think of.

What? Good-reads
Why? What better way to promote an RA (Readers Advisory) with Good-reads.
How? Visit the link and start adding books and reviews. Good-reads provides a way for patrons to see what the staff is reading and get recommendations and reviews. This tool in itself is a RA service, not just one to help promote your own library services.


Recommended Reads:

Breeding, M. (2009). Social networking strategies for professionals. Computers in Libraries, 29(9), 29-31
Fichter, D. , & Avery, C. (2012). Tools of influence: Strategic use of social media. Online, 36(4), 58-60.

Step-by-Step Guide to Your Social Media Success
Avoid These 4 Common Social Media Mistakes – Joseph Ruiz

Professional or Personal they still convey a message

This post will be in response to Exercise #2 for Libr246. The requirements included subscribing to 5 listed blogs and then 3 of your own interest and then compare them, write about it and provide your insight. You can continue to read or decide you don’t really care, either way I am still writing about it.

Listing from most enjoyed to least enjoyed the assigned blogs are as follows:

David Lee King – trends, social media, technology, constant but not predictable (no set schedule) and small bites with lots of flavor.

Librarian by Day – personal blogging about professional stuff. Language use is entertaining but not over board annoying, posts involve topics that make you think twice, not as constant as I’d like but still enjoyable when published.

In the Library With the Lead Pipe– this is a more professional blog written by a community of librarians and featuring guest publishers often from the education sector. These posts are written in a more formal language, so not usually a quick read and they tend to be lengthy but often talk about interesting and necessary subjects pertaining to libraries.

Librarian’s Commute – this particular blog I enjoyed because I work at a 2 year college so most of the posts I could relate to and also directly implement into my work. These posts were often long but they contained personal language, making them easier to read.

The Distant Librarianposts were usually brief, with excessive use of punctuation (i.e !!!!!!! instead of !), I’m thinking this stems from the personal connection and writing like one speaks, of course that is only speculation. The most recent most involved a personal trip to a fair with their family so the blog hs both personal and professional aspects.

Are you bored yet? If not, visit those links and check out the blogs.

What did I rank the blogs the way I did? Well I read most if not all my blog feeds on my phone, I don’t like to scroll very much but I like to get a lot of neat information. David Lee King small bite lots of flavor. Also, I enjoy posts that provide links within the post but also recommended reads so if I have time and am in the mood I can continue to read on the topic. Professionally I don’t really care for pictures in the post but personal blog posts better have pictures or I’m likely not to read. Just being honest.

After subscribing to the 5 blogs above I MUST subscribe to 3 more library blogs….well I was already subscribed to three library blogs as it is.

Stephen’s Lighthouse – Stephen Abram’s library blog. Who is Stephen Abram? (do you live under a rock?!)…read about him here. Stephen uses Social Media like most people eat, very often. His blog posts can range from 1-5 per day and they vary from controversial topics to new technologies to surveys on jobs.

The Daring Librarian -A personal blog of a professional librarian; however the blog is very popular making it both personal and professional (as part of her own branding). The author is very interested in social media tools and a self admitted Geek. Her posts are often very energetic and can be overwhelming in graphics. The topics often follow trends in the library world, social media sector and more.

The Jolly Librarian – written by a librarian at a Tennessee community college. I began following the JollyLibrarian when it was recommended by a colleague. Her posts are entertaining to read and help me as I build up our library blog. The author provides weekly challenges and updates the readers on how the staff graded in. Along with those posts are posts directly aimed at college students and tips to help them be more successful in school and life.

What makes a blog successful?

  1. Constant posting but not always predictable. If you come across something interesting, neat, etc. Share it. Don’t wait until the scheduled date to post it. There is a lot of information out there you won’t run out.
  2. Informative but not like drinking from a fire hose. Give us small bites with lots of flavor.
  3. Entertaining – formal writing is great but put some spunk into your posts otherwise its like reading term papers and lets be honest who really likes reading those?
  4. Topis are relate-able… Basically, if your readers can relate to your posts you will find your following to grow.

Thus concludes the ramblings.
Stop by again.

To blog or not to blog……is it a question?

What makes a blog effective? 

If a blog has a mission statement, meaning there is an agreed upon and laid out plan for the blog it can been very effective. Often blogs are created just to be created sometimes for a course that is being taken here, Libr203 for example. Many of us have created a blog for a class assignment in Libr203 and it sits there stagnant or as Crawford says, “rots in peace” (2009, p2). I laugh at this because some have posted that their current blogs they are using for this course (Libr246) are blogs they created in Libr203 and never used or deleted. When we created the blog it was simply to be created and fulfill the assignment, it did not have a true mission and thus it died, figuratively, and Libr246 resurrected it, most likely for it to die again. (This is sounding like a video game.)

Using a blog in a library can become a way to communicate library information. I know of some academic libraries that use their blog to announce new displays, to answer FAQs or to provide updated hours due to holidays, breaks, etc. Blogs are available through a simple RSS feed, meaning it can be easily accessed by the patrons without having to navigate the website. This is very helpful and time saving.

I feel strongly, just as Crawford does, to be successful you need to have a plan and you need to stick with it. You can adapt it over time, just as a mission statement may change, as your focus evolves but it is a necessity to have effective use for Blogs.

You want to be successful in your blogging? Follow these tips (found at Top Ten Tips for Successful Blogs):
-Have a plan (it can be flexible.)
-Be consistent
-Be diverse in your publications
-Be courteous (link to your references, cite other blogs, follow & comment on other blogs, comment on readers comments)
-Be you.


Crawford, W. (2009). Shiny toys or useful tools. Cites & Insights, 9(3), 1-9. Retrieved from: citesandinsights.info/v9i3a.pdf 


Libraries + 2.0 = issues

three 2.0 issues affecting libraries….
  1. Death by 2.0
  2. Death by fear
  3. Death by static

I see one of the main issues affecting libraries is “Death by 2.0”. Libraries become enthralled in Web 2.0 and dive in for a bite. The problem is that they don’t stop eating. There are too many 2.0 applications to become involved in all of them – blogs, Facebook, Wikis, Flikr,  tagging, chat boxes, Tumblr, FourSquare, Twitter, MySpace, (you get the point). Instead of carefully thinking out which ones to use it is far to often we get involved in multiple platforms we kill ourselves off (so to speak) before we can truly get going.

Another issue is “Death by fear”, the fear of giving control (even if a little) to patrons. Of course as librarians we should want to serve our patrons to our best abilities and provide for them what they want. Unfortunately, (yes, I am going to say it) the current age of the librarian is 40+ years. These new technologies are scary and unfamiliar and provide a sense of disarray. As stated in Helen Partridge’s, Librarian 2.0: it’s all in the attitude, “When discussing the emergence of library catalogs that allowed client tagging, some participants were still not convinced, stating, ‘But you could have a real mess!'” (Partridge, 2011). If libraries do not take the leap to interact with their patrons at their level, patrons will go elsewhere (Google anyone?).

The third issue, “Death by static”. Static refers to the lack of mobility in the library resources such as eBooks, mobile websites and virtual reference options. Libraries are having to change from being static buildings that are housing books and librarians sitting at reference desks conducting face-to-face reference interviews to off-site electronic resources and virtual reference interviews. This is a big change for libraries and will continue to be an issue as technology becomes the tool of choice for communication.

There are many issues that libraries face in regards to Web 2.0 and Library 2.0, libraries will always have new issues to address and adapt to. As commonly referred to “The only constant in our lives is change”.