Friday, 30 July 2010

The joys of facebook

I have just seen Facebook for the first time.  Obviously I had heard of it as it has a high profile and recieves a very mixed press.  Signing in, even after all the signings in I have been doing at various network sites for 23 Cambridge, I still found it nerve racking to sign in.  What to include, what to leave out, how far could I streach the truth about my age, all had to be considered.  I will attend the help session on Monday to ensure I am not letting myself in for something I don't want to know about.

 I did enjoy visiting the sites suggested by the team.  They were very good examples of good practice and what can be achieved if you have enthusiasm, dedication and happenings in the library to report on.  I liked seeing/hearing what staff were doing in their libraries, the additional services for users (yes, I thought the jigsaw was great, was it of the English Faculty?) and the informal way information could be sent to users.  I can see it would be useful and in the right hands I suspect it could reach quite a few users who tend to be unreachable.

  Sadly, I still have reservations about Facebook.  Facebook has received a very bad press concerning it's privacy settings.  I understand it has altered things before without telling its members, or are they friends?  This is of concern.  Like all internet sites it can be open to abuse and happenings that were not intended when it was set up.  It is a social networking site and that is what its members expect.  I did read the article on Libraries and facebook which Sarah put under further reading which was interesting.  I wonder if the older generation of facebook users will gradually change it to suit their changing needs and it will become less 'social' and more communication and work.  It will be very interesting to see how it develops.

 I cannot see myself having a facebook page, either personal or for the library, at the moment.  The library may have one in the future. I am open to change if it benefits my users, but it will be after careful consideration and consultation.  If users would like a library facebook page and would use it I will create one, and I can now, thanks to 23 Things.  In the meanwhile I will enjoy other libraries Facebook pages. 

Friday, 16 July 2010

23 Things Cambridge - LibraryThing

I became very excited when I saw LibraryThing was one of the 23 Things.  I had heard of it and thought it had great potential for small, or not so small as I discovered, libraries or libraries without much funding.  I eventually managed to work my way through the instructions, I am not good with screens finding them very confusing and loosing things, and started to create my library.  I had selected 20 children's books with publication dates ranging from 1965 to the present, but mostly with ISBNs.  To my surprise the first book I had selected, published in 2010, came up, but with a different publisher.  I wondered if the data base selected USA publications first and if this might prove to be a handicap.  It happened again for several other books, which I manually imputed.  I did wonder if it would be simpler just to alter the details on the record, but as I did not have in hand the book I was cataloguing ....
I can still see the potential for both personal and library use.  I suspect if it had been around 15 years ago we may very well have used it for the temporary online catalogue.  I wonder how the UL would have liked importing it into Newton?  At home I think I will stay with my current arrangement as I don't have that many books and they are mostly by the same authors.
Now to find what I should do to save and post!