Library 2.0 for You (L-2-4-U)

Monday, October 20, 2008; 1:00 – 2:30

(Disclaimer: I am a 2.0 novice, so please excuse any ignorance or anything I may have missed.  Feel free to post comments to correct any of my errors.)

Presenters: Paige Eaton Davis from the Minuteman Library Network, Brian Herzog from Chelmsford Public Library, Elizabeth Thomsen of NOBLE (North of Boston Library Exchange)

What’s Old is What’s New

Elizabeth Thomsen (blog:                 

The Historical Perspective:

In the past we read about things in books, but seldom had access to the source material.  As a result we only had access to the things that others chose.  Now that things have been digitized we have access to everything.  We can find old photos that have personal interest to us rather than an author. 

Now, people have the ability to interact with historical documents and photos.                                                                         is a blog with photos from historical archives.

Library of Congress on Flickr – People make comments on the photos. Members of the Community add tags. Interesting example of how people add tags.  Ordinary pictures of ordinary things – show a way of life and become nostalgic. 

Movies: For the Living –  Prelinger Archives: 1949 television production from the City of New York – a Public Service film about the housing problem in NYC.  A way for us to see everyday life – without being filtered through a scholar.  The Living Room Candidate – presidential commercials 1952-2008. 

The Future of History:There will be more of it. More complex written record – e-mail, blogging, wikis, social networking, etc…What happens when we die? Digital Dark Ages?

Geography is History: see the webpage for the Beebe Library in Wakefield, MA

People are interested in history, but not as passive consumers: Comments, conversation and stories. Contributions and crowdsourcing add to what we know.

The end of “look but don’t touch”: Make if easy for people to find and share;Tags, names, numbers, addresses, geocoding; Bookmarkable links; Code for embedding images; Badges and other tools; Multiple RSS feeds; Widgets, gadgets, plugins, apps

We want to encourage users to share their own photos, home movies, memories and mores, even though it means giving up control.

Encourage people to use your material and create new tools…even though it means giving up some control.

Paige Davis:Library 2.0 in you catalog (

Library 2.0 tools you can implement in your catalog or on your website to engage your patrons and make them want to come back.

Library 2.0 is making your library’s space more interactive, collaborative, and driven by community needs…to get people back into the library by making the library relevant to what they want and need in their daily lives.

Today’s teens are looking for collaborative content.

80% of requests for materials are coming from people’s homes. In the beginning, libraries had the information and pushed it out. Now people are talking back.

Catalogs should be: Attractive – keep up with current web “fashion”; Fun – patrons should enjoy searching and finding; Friendly – easy to link into and out of your catalog; Engaging – make patrons want to fome back over and over again.

Let user’s participate: tagging, ratings, reviews – we still have the same content, but now users have some participation.

Tagging: Why do people tag? So they can find it later. For an example – see Ann Arbor District Library (  Tagging allows people to stay on your website longer.  Darien Library – has a tag cloud on the right – tags can be searched.  Also allows people to tag their books in their collections. Some libraries are embedding this into their catalog.  Makes it easier to find similar books.

Ratings: Allows people to rate the items in your catalog.  In some cases reviews are allowed.  This allows other patrons to see what other readers think about a book before deciding to read it. Some libraries call them comments.

Most comments and reviews are moderated.  Also, people need to log in in order to post comments.

Help users when and where they need it: Live chat enables librarians to help users.  Meebo widget allows IM chatting – put it on catalog page to give users the option of asking a live person for  assistance.  Some libraries put this on their main page.

Find it now, save it for later: Text call numbers to them (look into how to do this – Paige didn’t have specific information), download citations from the OPAC (OCLC has this on WorldCat), bookmarking – save URL as a bookmark on a socail bookmarking site. A way to gather wish lists and bibliographies. Allows people to organize the library collection the way they want.

 Brian Herzog

(Here’s where my limited technological knowhow falters.  I have a vague idea how this works, but am not sure how to explain it to you.)

How to make our websites better by focusing on our local patrons. 

embed photo from Once logged into flickr, click on size.  Flickr then has html code already prepared.  Copy, then paste into the source code for your website.  Flickr does not format the photo, so you would have to do that.

Photo Badge from – this is a tool on the bottom of each Flickr badge. Click on this – either html or flash (html works best for most users), then follow directions for this.  Choose what will be in your badge, then choose how to format the badge. Then copy html code, go to web editor and paste it in.

Bookmarks Feed from Must have account with these services. Click on settings. Go to Linkrolls to set up how you want it to look on your website. As you do this it automatically gives you the html code which you copy then paste into your website source code.

There was much more, but it’s difficult to write it in a coherent fashion – much of what was discussed was actually shown, not told.  Check the NELA website where the presenters will be posting much of their presentations.

Web 2.0, Library 2.0, Librarian 2.0 – Updated!

What is the 2.0 environment and what do you do with it? Jessamyn West from Randolph (VT) Technical Career Center describes ways New England libraries have been using new technologies, and also some old tech, to reach and interact with patrons in new ways. It’s all about ideas, examples, and links, links, links.

Slides and links referenced in Jessamyn’s talk are available at her website:

Library 2.0 and beyond
Jessamyn West
Tuesday, 10:30

For a photo of Jessamyn, see Chronicle of Higher Ed article about “young librarians:”
That’s her on Casey Bisson’s iPhone.

This is sort of a sequel to last year’s Library 2.0 presentation at NELA.

Everyone, even small libraries, can get into the L2 game.

All photos in the presentation are from Flickr.

L2 is a service model/idea. Tim O’Reilly, creator of the O’Reilly series of programming books, coined the Web 2.0 term, tying together a bunch of trends in interactivity. Marketing buzzword to get people to conferences. Librarians: we can apply this to our service model. Grouping similar things together. Implication that we’re leaving behind 1.0 world. Acknowledging that we are changing the way we do business. We’re not all up to speed–not us, not our patrons/customers. But often it solves a real problem.

L2 ethos: Save a Stamp. Being more useful.

L2 is like obscenity–we know it when we see it. Depends on the circumstances. Relative to the alternatives. There’s no predefined list. User-centered.

Librarians like to search, but everyone else likes to find!

Network effects by default. Not so much just a couple of years ago.

User-generated content and MARC std: we need both. We need both.

Is what I’m doing reaching my users?

It’s all beta. Constant evaluation is possible, not like boxed software.

Feedback. The question wall.

Toolkit: not stuff but methods. You don’t have to have a blog (but why wouldn’t you?)

Change the website with the seasons.

Be willing to Experiment. It’s marketing, and knowing who your users are.

Go where your users are; go where you’re needed. Leave your building; help your users where they are. Linking to other libraries.

Avoid data silos. (Gale Group, InfoTrac) Not findable by Google. No network effect. Many catalogs don’t support non-expiring URLs.

Recognize usability: Cook Memorial Library,Tamworth, NH: using Scriblio. Compare to “OPAC Name Headings Search, LC call number, charged/not charged (library jargon).” Recognize the absence of usability. Remember what easy to use looks like: RI Historical Society.

Library Homepage for Distance Ed at SCSU: wow, a human works here!

Library Tech Tools: Chelmsford

Plymouth State U. Also uses Scriblio.

Cutest OPAC ever.

Accept experimentation.

Try and evaluate: Book Notes New Hampshire. New Hampshire Reads Fahrenheit 451. Create a blog just for a project.

Use the network to do what you already do. Example: Facebook group: Awesome Resources. Tools for library research.

Go new places: Second Life. Free live conferencing. American Memory Exhibit. Kansas State Library is in SL.

Save the time of the user. (Ranganathan)

LibX add-on for Firefox. Get all up in their web. (go where the users are)

UConn Library Staff wiki for ITS Software.

Nancy Keane’s Booktalks — Quick and Simple (NH)

Demand usability from products and vendors. Do your own usability testing.

Give constructive feedback: III User’s Group website. Branding is important for the vendor, but not for our finders.

Know why web standards are important.

Consider open source options. (Hire local)

Library 2.0 is not a religion. It’s not just about technology. It’s about awareness.

Slow Library Ahead – L2 is not just about speed, it’s about customer service.

PLCMC and Learning 2.0: libraries and fun.

What is next?