Thinking about Library 2.0

I’ve been doing a fair amount of thinking about the concept of Library 2.0 recently. Partly because I’ve been preparing my presentation (now on SlideShare) for Thursday’s web 2.0 and information literacy event in Bradford. I’ve also got the first Steering Group meeting for the JISC TILE project next Wednesday where we are considering what have been called ‘pain points’. The meeting is being held at LSE, and yesterday I was interviewed as part of the project by Ken Chad about my thoughts about library 2.0.

In many ways if we are going to use the web to provide access to library services, I can’t see how we can avoid using what we might call web 2.0 technologies, if only to ensure our websites and services are using the most up to date technologies. I’m never one to say use technology for technologies sake, but some web 2.0 technologies really improve the user’s experience of the web – making it more personalised and customisable. Other technologies, such as RSS feeds, to me just make sense and allow librarians to do their job better. So why manually update a static news web page when you can use a blog to add news to the page as we do on the CLT website? Why e-mail people constantly when you can set up feeds they can subscribe to? There is also the user’s expectation, many of whom expect enhanced functionality that they experience when they use Google or Amazon – it suggests things to them, it makes connections and learns about their needs. The library catalogue with it’s unforgiving approach to typos must surely soon be a thing of the past?

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