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By Kent Millwood Library Director, Thrift Library of Anderson University Presented at 2009 ALABI Annual Conference, and updated June 20, 2009 ALABI – Association of Librarians and Archivists at Baptists Institutions
WHAT IT IS Introduction - Unlike traditional, “top-down” planning and administration practices, “usercentered” practices promote change from the bottom up. The following discussion notes some of the ways this practice is already changing libraries. Whenever possible, hyperlinks are included to take the reader to the original source. Definition – A “user-centered” library determines its goals and practices based on user needs, not its own, and does so on a continuous basis. The following quotes are taken from “Innovation and Strategy: Risk and Choice in Shaping User-Centered Libraries,” by Kathryn J. Deiss. Go to http://hdl.handle.net/2142/1717 Then click
“Creating services that add value for the customer takes precedence over all other drivers in determining organizational success in the twenty first century. Libraries uniquely capable of anticipating and meeting customer needs in ways that mirror a changing world are the libraries that are deemed successful and, therefore, are able to attract resources and talent.” - p.17 “For innovation to occur libraries must tap the creative potential of their staffs, vendors, and customers.” - p.18 Discussion Questions– • Is it more important to give customers / users / patrons what they want or what you think they need? • Is there a difference between what users say they want and what they really want? • If you don’t give them what they want, will they go away? • Are libraries in danger of being replaced, at least in part, by organizations like Google, Amazon, NetFlix, Wikipedia, etc. that give users what they want? That allow users to create content? That allow users to create the rules?
EXAMPLES OF INNOVATION 1. Example of a library system (in this case the entire state of Pennsylvania) available from
anywhere at any time. Note that providing 24/7 assistance is much easier for groups of libraries than for single libraries.
Click to ask questions on any topic 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
http://www.askherepa.org/ 2. Example of a library that shelves books in a “user friendly” way instead of the “right” way. Library in Phoenix suburb abandons Dewey system http://www.signonsandiego.com/uniontrib/20070719/news_lz1n19read.html 3. Example of a library that has created what may become a common staff position. Facebook Application Programmer Position available at the University Library https://www.honors.illinois.edu/?q=node/238 4. Example of the new library catalog at Ann Arbor District Library that allows its users to “tag” collection items with their own subject headings and write reviews. http://www.aadl.org/catalog Look up Cooking with too hot tamales : recipes and tips from TV food network's spiciest cooking duo, by Mary Sue Milliken, and compare the official Library of Congress subject headings – Cookery, Latin American. Cookery, Mexican. Cookery, Spanish. to the user created subject tags. spicy, recipes, cooking, food, tamales, mexican, food network, tv, Mexican food, burritos, Tacos, Enchiladas Discussion Questions– • Do users have more time to catalog than catalogers – If it is a book that interests them, yes, but then who tags the boring books? • Do users choose better tags than catalogers? • Although we might like our tags (and controlled vocabulary) better, which method is more likely to result in the user finding books? • How is it that neither the cataloger nor the users picked cookbooks as an access point? • Why do we still limit subject headings as if we were living in a world of limited resources (3x5 cards, card catalogs, understaffed technical services department, etc.)? There is a very good article in Wired Magazine on how humans are having a hard time adapting form a concept of “scarcity” to one of “abundance” in Chris Anderson’s “Tech Is Too Cheap to
Meter: It's Time to Manage for Abundance, Not Scarcity.” http://www.wired.com/techbiz/it/magazine/17-07/mf_freer In it Anderson quotes the science fiction writer Cory Doctorow and what he calls "thinking like a dandelion." Doctorow writes: "The disposition of each—or even most—of the seeds isn't the important thing, from a dandelion's point of view. The important thing is that every spring, every crack in every pavement is filled with dandelions. The dandelion doesn't want to nurse a single precious copy of itself in the hopes that it will leave the nest and carefully navigate its way to the optimum growing environment, there to perpetuate the line. The dandelion just wants to be sure that every single opportunity for reproduction is exploited!" Librarians have always wanted the best subject headings, the best Dewey and LC numbers, and the best author / title / notes fields. But have we always gotten it right? Remember when the official LC subject heading for a “Light Bulb” was “Lamp, Incandescent?” And how is it possible that both librarians and users failed to choose “cookbook” as a search term? Who knows, maybe the next searcher will tag our example with “cookbook”, or “cook book”, or “cook books”. Users could care less if we get it right – or even if they get it right. There are lots of typos in Tagging. Users simply want to find they book they want no matter what search term they use. In other words, they want to find the book in every crack in every pavement. Later in this presentation, under Examples of Web 2.0, various social networking sites are described. How might the online catalog change if these techniques were used?
PLANNING vs. INNOVATION Planning – Typically, a means to improve what we are already doing, or add to what we are doing. Planning usually results in incremental change, leaving the organization’s identity intact. “If you asked an American what he wanted for better transportation prior to Henry Ford, he would have said a faster horse.” When online catalogs first came into being, a popular feature was the ability to display metadata as a catalog card. Innovation – Things that change the way we do things. Examples of Innovation: • Automobiles, television, TV dinners • Websites vs. newspapers • Full Text Databases vs. Periodicals • Cell phones vs. all of the following - phones, ipods, computers, televisions, radios, GPS loators, still cameras, video cameras, notebooks, calendars, telephone books, yellow pages, travel atlases, alarm clocks, flashlights, etc. Consequences of Innovation – If you truly innovate, you may 1. Abandon many of your core goals and objectives
Which of the following traditional library tasks are endangered? Binding Journals Microfilm and microfiche A wide variety of daily newspapers Reference books – particularly annuals available for free on the internet 2. Change yourself into something you no longer recognize. Time Frame - Traditional needs 1- 5 years. Innovation needs only 3-4 months. Discussion – How do you budget for innovation when your organization operates on an annual budget? Don’t Over plan • KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid) • 3 Minute Plan Feel your way along. Innovation is not a rocket you aim and release. Innovation in the 2.0 sense is like driving down an unfamiliar road, constantly making minute changes in speed and direction as your reality changes. Be willing to Fail Something will go wrong, and that’s ok. Remember “thinking like a dandelion”. The concept of abundance applies just as much to ideas in competition with each other as it does to the use of computer memory. This means being willing to strike out 100 times in order to hit that grand slam. Assessment – Talk to your customer, constantly. Assessment Tools • Online Surveys • Focus Groups • User Observations • Conversations - Collect Stories o Offer compensation to your volunteers (focus groups) - Freebies o Talk to people outside the library Discussion Questions • What do you do when your users ask for something unreasonable? • Will administers be willing to put up with 99 failures to reach one wonderful success? • Will users? • Great innovators tend to be the ones with nothing to lose - newcomers or organizations threatened with extinction. Does that describe libraries? What were Kodak, Fuji, and Polaroid doing while the digital camera as being developed and marketed? Was their mission to make “film” or to make “pictures”?
EXAMPLES OF WEB 2.0 (Definitions provided, in part, by Wikipedia.) The following web sites practice various aspects of web 2.0 where there users supply content and/or assist in organizing and improving the content, services, communications of the entity. NOTE: An increasing number of these sites practice multiple aspects of web 2.0. Tagging Delicious –Sometimes called del.icio.us – a social bookmarking web service for storing, sharing, and discovering web bookmarks. It has more than five million users and 150 million bookmarked URLs. Delicious uses a non-hierarchical classification system in which users can tag each of their bookmarks with freely chosen index terms (generating a kind of folksonomy. A combined view of everyone's bookmarks with a given tag is available.) Its collective nature makes it possible to view bookmarks added by similar-minded users. Some libraries use delicious to post their Favorite websites. Those that don’t can still use Delicious to identify valuable sites to add to their own pages. Go to Delicious at http://delicious.com/ Search for customer centered libraries. Then click on the Traveling Librarian. Flickr – So what makes Flickr so social, and therefore so different? Flickr follows a "desire lines" philosophy, letting people create their own metadata, laying paths where people are walking instead of trying to lay out paths and assuming people will follow them (like, say, structured classification). This gives you an opportunity to observe a user-based classification, and learn what your users think your data is about, and possibly using that to your advantage to, say, improve your classification, or study how the patron mind works. For a larger discussion read Andrea Mercado’s blog on “Tagging on Flickr & del.icio.us” in LibraryTechronics. http://librarytechtonics.info/bits/295/tagging-on-flickr-delicious/ Rating NetFlix – An online DVD and Blu-ray Disc rental service, offering flat rate rental-bymail and online streaming to customers in the United States. The company, on average, ships 1.9 million DVDs to customers each day. Netflix developed and maintains an extensive personalized video-recommendation system based on ratings and reviews by its customers, similar to the system used by Amazon.com.
Reviews Amazon – America's largest online retailer, with nearly three times the internet sales revenue of runner up Staples, Inc. It started as an on-line bookstore but soon diversified to product lines of VHS, DVD, music CDs and MP3s, computer software, video games, electronics, apparel, furniture, food, toys, etc. Not only does Amazon solicit customer reviews of its products, but it also utilizes their opinions in providing rating.
TripAdvisor – A free travel guide and research website that hosts reviews from users and other information designed to help plan a vacation. TripAdvisor is an example of consumer generated media. The website services are free to users, who provide most of the content, and the website makes its money from advertising, mostly from travel-related industries.
Content Wikipedia –A free, multilingual encyclopedia. Its name is a portmanteau of the words wiki (a technology for creating collaborative websites, from the Hawaiian word wiki, meaning 'quick' and encyclopedia). Wikipedia's 13 million articles (2.9 million in the English Wikipedia) have been written collaboratively by volunteers around the world, and almost all of its articles can be edited by anyone who can access the Wikipedia website. It is currently the most popular general reference work on the Internet. Critics of Wikipedia accuse it of systemic bias and inconsistencies, and target its policy of favoring consensus over credentials in its editorial process. Wikipedia's reliability and accuracy are also an issue. When Time magazine recognized You as its Person of the Year for 2006, acknowledging the accelerating success of online collaboration and interaction by millions of users around the world, it cited Wikipedia as one of three examples of Web 2.0 services, along with YouTube and MySpace. YouTube –A video sharing website on which users can upload and share videos, and view them in MPEG-4 format. The company displays a wide variety of user-generated video content, including movie clips, TV clips, and music videos, as well as amateur content such as video blogging and short original videos. Most of the content on YouTube has been uploaded by individuals, although media corporations including CBS, the BBC, UMG and other organizations offer some of their material via the site. Unregistered users can watch the videos, while registered users are permitted to upload an unlimited number of videos. YouTube made it possible for anyone who could use a computer to post a video that millions of people could watch within a few minutes. The wide range of topics covered by YouTube has turned video sharing into one of the most important parts of Internet culture. Blogging –A type of website usually maintained by an individual with regular entries of commentary, descriptions of events, or other material such as graphics or video. A typical blog combines text, images, and links to other blogs, Web pages, and other media related to its topic. The ability for readers to leave comments in an interactive format is an important part of many blogs. LifeHacker –Daily weblog on software and personal productivity recommends downloads, web sites and shortcuts that help you work smarter and save time. Found a better mousetrap? Share it with the world.
Reaching Out (Social networking) Facebook – A free-access social networking website. Users can join networks organized by city, workplace, school, and region to connect and interact with other people. People can also add friends and send them messages, and update their personal profiles to notify friends about themselves. Facebook is working hard to find ways to compete with Google. Their theory is that some users would prefer to use their personal networks to find information – how to find a reliable doctor or plumber or flat screen TV, important news story, or interesting YouTube selection, rather than “impersonal” Google. Read Fred Vogelsteins comments in Wired Magazine’s “Great Wall of Facebook: The Social Network's Plan to Dominate the Internet — and Keep Google Out.” http://www.wired.com/techbiz/it/magazine/17-07/ff_facebookwall How do you determine if information is reliable? Apparently, for some users, it depends on if it comes from someone you trust – like your personal network. Does this mean that all library’s need their own Facebook page, like this one at the British Library? http://www.facebook.com/britishlibrary MySpace – A social networking website with an interactive, user-submitted network of friends, personal profiles, blogs, groups, photos, music, and videos for teenagers and adults internationally. The 100 millionth account was created on August 9, 2006. Note that the University of Illinois Urbana Champaign Undergraduate Library is “excited to meet the 2009 UIUC First Year students! Mood: curious.”, or at least it was in June of 2009. http://www.myspace.com/undergradlibrary Twitter – A free social networking and micro-blogging service that enables its users to send and read other users' updates known as tweets. Tweets are text-based posts of up to 140 characters, displayed on the user's profile page and delivered to other users who have subscribed to them (known as followers). Senders can restrict delivery to those in their circle of friends or, by default, allow anybody to access them. A February 2009 Compete.com blog entry ranked Twitter as the third most used social network, Facebook being the largest, followed by MySpace which puts the number of unique monthly visitors at roughly 6 million and the number of monthly visits at 55 million.”
Library-like Sites Shelfari - Members can build virtual bookshelves, discover, rate and discuss books, and participate in online groups. LibraryThing - An online service to help people catalog their books. The catalog can be accessed from anywhere—including mobile phones. As of May 2009 it contained 37 million books and reached 650,000 users. Used to post personal collections online, discuss books, and find books of a similar nature. One Million free covers can be downloaded into your PAC.
GoodReads.com - Get book recommendations from people you know. Keep track of what you've read and what you'd like to read. Form a book club, answer book trivia, collect your favorite quotes. These three sites take traditional library services, such as cataloging books, locating books by topic, author, and title, arranging books in a browsable fashion, reviewing books, promoting the use of books, etc., and empower users to create their own virtual libraries – minus the full text, at least for now. Note that some library catalogs retrieve book covers from Library Thing (and Amazon) to use in their PACS. WHAT DO YOUR CUSTOMERS WANT? The following preferences were collated from user surveys, personal interviews, and focus groups prior to the construction of Anderson University’s new Thrift Library in 2008. • • • • • • • • • • • • Unrestricted Cell Phone Use. Cell phones are now an integral part of the collaborative research process. Informality Food and Drink 24/7 Service Comfort and convenience Plenty of easily accessible power outlets for laptops Seating – Variety, Formal and Informal Seating - Single / Tables / Small Group Seating - Quiet / Normal Voice / Louder Easy, free printing Virtual Library Fewer Rules (unless someone is inconveniencing them) o Ability to check out Reference Materials o Longer circulation periods Empowerment - Do It Yourself Options o Self Checkout o Online Renewal o Ability to review and update online account o Online Instructions – Power Points, Q&As, Specialized Instructions as Needed posted at Point of Use. Make Library Experience Easier / More Effective What your customer’s do NOT want? Old technologies o Microfiche o Bound Periodicals o Current magazines o Newspapers
• • •
o Paper indices and bibliographies such as Readers’ Guide, MLA Bibliography, Book Review Digest, etc. Barriers to service - Millennials tend to give up easily. o Fees for photocopying and printing o Having to learn the libraries “secrets” – Classification System, esoteric database search techniques, o Unwilling to come to the library o Less likely to ask for human help. Used to clicking on it.
Now compare these preferences to those listed by Richard Sweeny in his online document, Millennial Behaviors & Demographics as noted below. http://126.96.36.199/search?q=cache:ZBXEFHEBypYJ:library1.njit.edu/stafffolders/sweeney/Millennials/Article-MillennialBehaviors.doc+millennials+characteristics+college&cd=3&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=us
• • • •
Millennials are Digital Natives. They love technology and incorporate it into their lives. Millennials expect a much greater array of product and service selectivity. Millennials strongly prefer learning by doing. Millennials prefer to keep their time and commitments flexible longer in order to take advantage of better options; they also expect other people and institutions to give them more flexibility. Once Millennials do make their choices in products and services, they expect them to have as much personalization and customization features as possible to meet their changing needs, interests and tastes. Millennials are furious when they feel they are wasting their time; they want to learn what they have to learn quickly and move on. Millennials have more friends and communicate with them more frequently using IM (instant messaging), text messaging, cell phones as well as more traditional communication channels. They are prolific communicators. Millennials know how and when to work with other people more effectively. Millennials, disturbingly, are not reading literature or newspapers as much as previous generations of the same age.
WEB 2.0 – LIBRARY 2.0 Library 2.0 can be understood to have these four essential elements as noted by Jack Maness in “Library 2.0 Theory: Web 2.0 and Its Implications for Libraries.” http://webology.ir/2006/v3n2/a25.html
It is user-centered. Users participate in the creation of the content and services they view within the library's web-presence, OPAC, etc. The consumption and creation of content is dynamic, and thus the roles of librarian and user are not always clear.
It provides a multi-media experience. Both the collections and services of Library 2.0 media experience. contain video and audio components. While this is not often cited as a function of Library 2.0, it is here suggested that it should be. It is socially rich. The library's web presence includes users' presences. There are both . web-presence synchronous (e.g. IM) and asynchronous (e.g. wikis) ways for users to communicate with one another and with librarians. rarians. It is communally innovative. This is perhaps the single most important aspect of Library innovative. 2.0. It rests on the foundation of libraries as a community service, but understands that as communities change, libraries must not only change with them, they must allow users to change the library. It seeks to continually change its services, to find new ways to allow communities, not just individuals to seek, find, and utilize information.
The image above is sometimes called the “Fl “Flying Whale”, “Twitter Whale”, and even the “Fail , Whale”. Forget Twitter for the moment and imagine “Library” Whale. Think of the whale as the Whale. t library and the birds as our users / patrons / customers. We know what whales do based solely now on their own efforts. They swim. Now imagine what they accomplish with the help of their omplish users? Library 2.0 attempts to involve library users in changing the library by asking them what they y want and then giving it to them. Not only does it make the libr library “user-centered in terms of its centered” goals and objectives, but it taps the power of its users in enhancing library services. ,
RECOMMENDED READING Anderson Chris. “Tech Is Too Cheap to Meter: It's Time to Manage for Abundance, Not Scarcity.” Wired Magazine. 17.07 (2009): 72-77. Web. 22 June 2009. http://www.wired.com/techbiz/it/magazine/17-07/mf_freer Bradley, Phil. How to Use Web 2.0 in Your Library. London: Facet, 2007. Print. Brown, Anna Laura. SocialNetworkingLibrarian.com. (Blog covering the convergence of social networking and libraries.) View the following: Librarian’s 2.0 Social Manifesto Video Library Thing Video http://socialnetworkinglibrarian.com/ Deiss, Kathryn J. “Innovation and Strategy: Risk and Choice in Shaping User-Centered Libraries.” IDEALS @ Illinois. Web. 31 May 2009. http://hdl.handle.net/2142/1717 Reprinted from Library Trends 53.1 (Summer, 2004): 17-32. Mercado, Andrea. “Tagging on Flickr & del.icio.us.” LibraryTechtonics. Web. 24 Oct. 2005. http://librarytechtonics.info/bits/295/tagging-on-flickr-delicious/ Mick, Jason. “Hash Tags Rise as Latest Social Networking Fad.” Daily Tech Blog. 12 March 2009. Web. 31 May 2009. http://www.dailytech.com/article.aspx?newsid=14557 Maness, Jack M. “Library 2.0 Theory: Web 2.0 and Its Implications for Libraries.” Webology, 3.2 (June, 2006). Web. 31 May 2009. http://webology.ir/2006/v3n2/a25.html Mashable – The Social Media Guide – (Blog covering cool new websites and social networks: Facebook, Google, Twitter, MySpace and YouTube.) http://mashable.com/ Sweeney, Richard. Millennial Behaviors & Demographics. 22 Dec. 2006. Web. 30 April 2009. http://188.8.131.52/search?q=cache:ZBXEFHEBypYJ:library1.njit.edu/stafffolders/sweeney/Millennials/Article-MillennialBehaviors.doc+millennials+characteristics+college&cd=3&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=us Vogelstein, Fred. “Great Wall of Facebook: The Social Network's Plan to Dominate the Internet — and Keep Google Out.” Wired Magazine. 17.07 (2009): 96+. 25 Web. June 2009. http://www.wired.com/techbiz/it/magazine/17-07/ff_facebookwall .
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