Just another librarian blog

Archive for January, 2009

More on Twittering Libraries

Posted by lindyjb on January 31, 2009

Earlier in January, I sent Michael Stephens a copy of my LIS 5313 web 2.0 article regarding Twittering Libraries. Since he wrote a lot about the value Twitter has for libraries, I thought the information I collected from my survey might be of some interest. He probably gets a million emails from other random folks all the time,  but what the heck, I thought – it’s worth a shot, so I emailed it to him — and he responded back!

I can see why he is well-revered in the librarian community – even though he is probably one of the busiest guys in the profession, he took time to read what I put together and replied back with an offer to do a guest posting on his blog, Tame the Web. I am still so happy and grateful of that opportunity!

You can read the original post here, but I thought I’d go ahead and post it below as well.

More on Twittering Libraries…a TTW Guest Post by Lindy Brown

Lindy shared her project for LIS5313 with me via email and I asked her to share her study with TTW readers. Thanks Lindy! Michael

Recently, I read a post from about Twitter’s staggering growth in 2008: Twitter grew 752 percent in 2008 for a total of 4.43 million unique visitors in December! What does this mean for libraries? As Twittermania spreads, more and more of their patrons are will use it to communicate, socialize and make connections.  As such, libraries should see the unlimited potential Twitter can have to connect them to their community and beyond.

Libraries must adjust to reflect the expanded use of social media by our youth (see the recent John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur report from the Digital Youth Project). Much has been debated and discussed about the library staying relevant; I believe we must meet our users “where they’re at.” One way to do this is through social media, and Twitter is part of that repertoire.

This past fall I wrote an article titled Twittering Libraries for my LIS 5313 (Design & Production of Media) graduate class at Florida State University. The article provides background information and a brief history of Twitter, notes the pros and cons reported by libraries using it, and shares findings on innovative ways libraries are using the service.

At the time, I found about 90 libraries on Twitter and I emailed the survey to all of them. Sixty-five libraries/librarians replied. From that information, I wrote my article. I found out that overall, most librarians said Twitter is easy, fun, free to use, is a great marketing and public relations tool, allows for collaboration amongst staff and community, provides opportunities for professional development and networking, has strength in its brevity, and allows libraries to, as one librarian put it, “build street cred.”

My article is just a little window into the endless possibilities that Twitter can provide for libraries/librarians. Since then, I have found many more libraries using Twitter. Furthermore, recent comments on blog posts by Jenny Levine (The Shifted Librarian) and the ACRL blog show continued expansion and ingenious uses of Twitter. (Definitely check out Brian Mathews’ paper, Twitter & the Library: Thoughts on the Syndicated Lifestyle, that is connected to the ACRL post).

Some may argue that Twitter is yet another web 2.0 fad, but I believe we’re only seeing the beginning of its utility. Even with a limited reach, Twitter is a free and not-so-time-intensive tool that libraries/librarians can use to improve their services, create relationships with their patrons and community, and use for assessment and promotion. I believe that with 752 percent growth in just the past year, Twitter is more than just a fad, and its reach currently has limitless potential.

If you or your library is using Twitter in a way not discussed in the LIS 5313 article, please share!

Posted in libraries, LIS5313, twitter | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

COLOR + Creative Commons * Totally Awesome = Multicolr Search Lab

Posted by lindyjb on January 31, 2009

Wow! I love color and so I really, really love this tool from idée: Multicolor Search Lab Flickr Set. I stumbled upon it from Kevin Brody at his blog – check out his post on finding the perfect color-matched creative-commons photo.

Step 1, click on a color square and creative-commons photos show up…I tried out green…


Step 2, Want to mix it up? Click on another color… I added a lil’ yellow to the mix…


Pretty cool, eh?!

Posted in images, photography | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

President Obama signs the Lily Ledbetter Fair Pay Act

Posted by lindyjb on January 30, 2009

For LIS 5661, we have to write a “government document” story, detailing a bill as it becomes a law. I have chosen to focus on the Lily Ledbetter Fair Pay Act. Today it was signed into law!

As I work on my govdoc paper, I’ll be sure to share the interesting documents, testimonials from hearings, committee reports, etc that I find.

Posted in govdoc story, government, LIS5661 | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Obama’s Office of Social Innovation

Posted by lindyjb on January 28, 2009

I know I’ve been talking a lot about Obama recently, but I just found something else fascinating and new about his administration. While perusing yesterday, I noticed that within his Executive Office, Obama has an “Office of Social Innovation.

Maybe Obama really is trying to make government cool again!


Posted in government, innovation | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Government Documents – on Scribd?!

Posted by lindyjb on January 26, 2009

I have been reading chapter after chapter in United States Government: Information & Policies (Hernon, et al) about all the sources one can use to find Government documents. Lemme tell ya – there are lots. Published in 2002, the book was on the cusp of the electronic information breakthrough. As such, we have seen many updates toward making most government documents available online. THOMAS, GPO Access and are excellent free sources and have expanded since the book was published.

With Barack Obama’s plan for transparency, government information has expanded to social networking sites such as YouTube (which I described in an earlier post).

Is Scribd part of the action now? It sure looks like it! Barack Obama’s official inaugural address is now posted on Scribd for all to see, access, download, embed in webpages or blogs.

Could Scribd join the ranks as THOMAS and GPO Access? I don’t think so, but I must admit I am impressed with the idea of being able to download – or more so – embed government documents into a web page!

Posted in government | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Following ALA Midwinter on Twitter

Posted by lindyjb on January 24, 2009

I have been following the ALA Midwinter conference via tweets from folks who are attending. Of course I don’t get the full experience of being there, but I’ve been able to pick up a lot o’ lil’ nuggets of knowledge from the various tweets.

If you’re interested in checking out the goings on from folks that are there, do a twittersearch for #alamw09. Twittersearch allows you to follow your results via an RSS feed, which I have done in my RSS reader, bloglines.

Or, you can follow #alamw09 on or subscribe via RSS feed there too…

Posted in ALA, conferences, twitter | Tagged: , , , , | 1 Comment »

New already up!

Posted by lindyjb on January 20, 2009

Wow, already has transitioned!


Posted in government | Tagged: , , , | 1 Comment »

Speaking of the Inauguration… Who’s paying for it anyway?

Posted by lindyjb on January 20, 2009

I’m doing my reading for LIS5661 (government info) and one small section of my book covers financial disclosure information. (Elected officials are required to file personal financial disclosure reports every year). There are quite a few interesting resources — i.e., check out the Office of the Clerk of the House (Public Disclosure Reports), the Federal Election Commission, the Center for Responsive Politics.

Of course I’m curious about the financial reports, so to practice my reference skills, I checked out the sites. Most interesting, however, was my foray to the Center for Responsive Politics. One of the lead stories on their page that caught my eye was a great picture of our president-to-be (in less than 24 hours!) with the caption of “Who’s paying for his inauguration?” Check out the link – it is really, really interesting!

The article breaks down where the money comes from – which states, industries, organizations and even which individuals donated.

Please note that is a nonpartisan guide “to money’s influence on U.S. Elections and public policy.” As someone very well aware of how easy it is to “spin” things in politics, I recommend bookmarking this site.

Update 1/24: One of my other favorite non-partisan/independent organizations,, answered a recent question about Obama’s inauguration costs versus George Bush’s inauguration: Did Barak Obama’s inauguration really cost four times as much as George W. Bush’s?

Posted in government, LIS5661, Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Inauguration: HBO live feed of events

Posted by lindyjb on January 19, 2009

Update from previous post (1/20):
Find Live feeds and videos of the inauguration on:

You can also watch the January 18 inaugural celebration and concert from HBO at This site also has photos of the event, though not as many as Obama’s pic2009 page.


Posted in government, video | Tagged: , , , | 1 Comment »

Follow the Inauguration on Twitter

Posted by lindyjb on January 19, 2009

Follow the inauguration on twitter. Links to live feeds of the events plus pictures and other updates can be found here.


Posted in government | Tagged: , , , | 1 Comment »


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.