Archive for the ‘twitter’ Category

The American Library Association is hosting a webinar on how libraries are using social media tools (puhleeze, let’s get away from the Web 2.0 talk – we’re way beyond that!) for advocacy.

But what about using these tools for authentic community engagement? (i.e., the members of the social network actually contribute knowledge, are a part of the community, have equal status, and are engaged in working on something meaningful together)

I can’t attend this seminar, but I’d love for someone to attend and report back on the possibilities. How can we use the ability to connect people to institutions and to each other online to foster relationships, interactions, group information-sharing, group problem-solving?

See details below. If you can participate, please add your insights to this blog.


Believe it or not, Twitter, Facebook, Linked In and other Web 2.0
applications are becoming more and more effective tools for library advocacy
efforts. Join Dr. Curtis Rogers (South Carolina State Library), Kristin
Murphy (ALA Washington Office) and Stephanie Vance (Advocacy Guru), for this session on how libraries can use social media techniques to capture the
attention of policymakers and the public they represent ? from townhall to
Washington, DC! If you?re wondering how to use Web 2.0 to get heard on
issues that matter to your library, this is the place to

*When: *Tuesday, October 27, 2009 ? 4:00 PM ? 5:00 PM EDT

Register Now: https://www2.gotomeeting.com/register/132869762>

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This just in via Twitter from David Cohn, who will be a guest speaker on citizen journalism for my Community Engagement course: first community funded report published! This report explores the question: “What happens if, all of a sudden, you need to change the entire energy infrastructure on which California‚Äôs transportation system runs?” Check it out.

Here’s what David says in his introduction to this article.

[Editors Note: This is the first example of “community funded reporting” here at Spot.Us. To learn more about Spot.Us read this NY Times article. To fund another investigation – check our pre-beta wiki which still has two actionable items. As this content is commissioned by the public it is free to any news organization or blog to republish. Thank you to the donors who made this possible. At the bottom is a non-exhaustive list of other publications that have run this material.]

How cool is that? It’s commissioned by the public so it belongs to the public. (I personally contributed a small amount of money to a news story that will fact check political advertisements. Now isn’t that a great service?)

Gee, what other public institution might use this approach to decentralize reporting on local issues?

What if libraries provided the infrastructure for this kind of reporting to take place in their own community? (See the spot.us wiki) It might not be “community funded” but it could be “community based”. Citizens could make a pitch for a story they want to write about their community and be posted on the library’s wiki. Other people who share an interest could contribute content and resources. Obviously the library could support the reporter’s information needs and perhaps even provide training on how to do community-based research. When the reporter is finished, the library could provide editorial review and publishing support.

What about opinion pieces in addition to straight reporting? Last night my husband and I were reflecting on the editorial pages in our weekly village newspaper. They are dominated long articles written by a few individuals who often rant ad nauseum. (I’d like for my local library to host a workshop on how to write concise letters to the editor. At least my newspaper could refer them to information about how to write a letter to the editor!) I wonder how many thoughtful people in our community have something to say (op-ed or newsworthy) but feel shut out by the cacophony of a few. What if the library were the vehicle for people to have a voice?

hmmm, what else????
Any downsides????

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I just attended socialmediacamp in Austin and learned just how popular Twitter is with the techno set. (NOTE: apparently I’m less on the fringe and closer to the fray when it comes to the geek set.)

I’ve been twittering for about five months and wrote an earlier post on how Twitter can be useful. But as is the case with all technologies, some uses are not clear from the beginning. They emerge over time and the real benefit of the technology is often beyond the imagination of its creators.
So, it was interesting to learn that reporters for the Austin American Statesman are using Twitter to:

  • have eyes on the street (“stuck in traffic on Mopac at Spicewood Springs” “nasty car wreck on 35 at Braker”)
  • get info (“writing story on cheese-making. Who makes cheese?”)
  • drive traffic to the web site and blogs (I follow @omarg who writes about technology and just followed this tweet to his friday afternoon blog.)

So why not use Twitter to promote the LBJ Library, create a buzz about upcoming events and cool things in the collection, and drive traffic to the web site AND to the library itself?

For example, a few weeks ago, the Vostok 3KA-2 the last unmanned Russian space capsule was unloaded at the LBJ Library.

(Video and photos to come later – it’s late on Friday afternoon and staff are heading out the door – but you can see a photo here. I’m not inserting the actual photo to avoid copyright infringement.)

It took a crane to hoist it up through the fourth floor windows. What a site that must have been. Of course, press was there, but a little twitter might have brought out a few more peeps. At least it would be a reminder that this stunning exhibit is in the works!

Here’s more from the web site of the company that owns the Vostok, which, by the way can be purchased, but I think you have to buy the whole space collection!

Vostok 3KA-2 Space Capsule
This flown spacecraft was sent into space on March 25, 1961 with the mannequin Ivan Ivanovich and the dog Zvezdochka, aboard. This was the last practice flight of the Vostok program, 18 days prior to the Vostok flight carrying Yuri Gagarin into history as the first human in space.

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