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Critical Error: Michigan Public Libraries and Social Media

July 01, 2014

Critical Error: Michigan Public Libraries and Social Media

The need for Michigan libraries to represent themselves online.


July 01, 2014

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  1. L i s a M . R a b e

    y d i g i t a l . b i b l y o t h e k e l i s a @ d e w e y d i s t r i c t l i b r a r y . o r g K r i s t i n L a L o n d e A n n A r b o r D i s t r i c t L i b r a r y k r i s t i n @ d e w e y d i s t r i c t l i b r a r y . o r g Critical Error: The need for Michigan libraries to represent themselves online. http://blog.deweydistrictlibrary.org/
  2. The Thesis: —  Many libraries in Michigan consider having an

    online presence an option and not a necessity. This however, is quickly becoming a dangerous position for libraries to take. —  The time has come where it is no longer optional for Michigan libraries to opt out of an online presence; recent studies make it evident that libraries that do not adapt to digital information gathering techniques are dangerously becoming irrelevant to their communities.
  3. The Thesis: —  According to Pew Internet in 2010, 75%

    of American adults have access to the Internet in some form and a large percentage of these users are engaging with civic, business or entertainment online communities. —  Internet usage is growing sharpest for Baby Boomers, not just those under the age of 25. —  Our presentation will show the growing necessity of a well designed, accessible library website contrasted with the poor quality of many Michigan Public Library websites.
  4. The Thesis: —  This contrast will illustrate our main argument,

    that the possession of a content rich website should rank on priority with other established library services, such as a searchable catalog, in order for Michigan Public Libraries to remain relevant to their communities. —  We argue that the question for libraries should no longer be if the library needs a slick, information rich web portal but rather how the library can get and maintain one affordably
  5. Problems: —  Many Michigan public libraries are not keeping pace

    with current online information gathering behavior. —  Abandoned web projects. —  No current or very little contact information. —  Underutilization of free online tools. —  No consistency with using same tools for different projects. —  Content is stagnant or non-existent. —  No or little access to library services. —  Usability and accessibility needs are not addressed. —  Sites are not mobile/smartphone accessible.
  6. *How to social network —  Try it out: Personal before

    business. —  Create a blog or Twitter and Facebook accounts. —  Also – only begin with one or two technologies. Blog and Twitter, Twitter or Facebook, then expand as needed. —  Keep the content relevant but personable. —  All it takes is one person passionate about the technology to make it work. —  Don’t feel guilty about logging into social networking sites when at work – it can be used professionally!
  7. CMO’s Guide to Social Media Landscape http://www.cmo.com/social-media/ cmos-guide-social-media-landscape Choosing which

    social media network is right for your institution can be difficult as there are so many options and choices. This guide helps breakdown the major players and why they may or may not be of use to you.
  8. Statistics: According to ALA’s State of America’s Libraries Report, 2010:

    —  60% [of Americans] renew their materials online. —  57% access their library’s website on a regular basis. —  Number of social networking users has doubled in the last 2 years.
  9. Statistics: According to Pew Internet:1 —  83% have cell phones

    or smartphones. ¡  35% access the web from their phones. ¡  17% own a smartphone2 —  74% use the Internet. —  60% have broadband at home. —  46% have a laptop. 1 Pew Internet, Internet, broadband, and cell phone statistics, Jan 5, 2010 2 Mashable, Why Smartphone Adoption May Not Be as Big as You Think, August 26, 2010
  10. Proposed Solutions: —  Issue: Abandoned web projects. ¡  Create a

    social media policy and a project management matrix to ensure regular use, updates and maintenance. —  Issue: No current or very little contact information. ¡  Treat your web presence like your virtual front door. Provide brick and mortar address, phone numbers and email addresses. Be sure to update when necessary. —  Issue: Underutilization of free online tools. ¡  Popular sites such as Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, YouTube are not only free to use but also provide tutorials. ¡  These sites also provide another level of engagement with your patrons.
  11. Proposed Solutions: —  Issue: No consistency with using the same

    tools for different projects. ¡  When creating a social media policy, decide which tools are the best for your library for each purpose. For example: If creating separate blogs for adult services and teens, keep them on the same service instead on differing ones for ease of use and updating. —  Issue: Content is stagnant or non-existent. ¡  Creating new content is important for keeping your patrons engaged with your library online and off. ¡  Use a Content Management System (CMS) such as WordPress, Drupal or Joomla to build, manage and provide content on the fly. ÷  Library of Michigan, partnering with IMLS, has a program that will build and deploy a site FOR FREE built on the popular Plone CMS derivative, Plinkit.
  12. Proposed Solutions: ¡  Services such as Facebook and Twitter make

    it easy to update new content such as events, news, new services and materials. Even better, these services can also be updated at the same time via free services such as HootSuite. —  Issue: No or little access to library services. ¡  At this point, it is absolutely imperative to have an OPAC available and to make your collections searchable online. Many, if not most, consortiums in Michigan provide this service as well as technical support.
  13. Proposed Solutions: —  Issue: Usability and accessibility needs are not

    addressed. ¡  Websites are created for the end user, not for the designer. You should attempt to address the needs of your community so that the visually and hearing impaired have the same access to information as the non- impaired. —  Issue: Sites are not mobile/smartphone accessible. ¡  You don’t have to build a new site from scratch for your mobile users. Many popular CMS’s have plugins available to do the work for you.
  14. Bibliography —  ---. “The CMO's Guide To The Social Media

    Landscape.” Cmo.com. CMO: Digital Marketing Insight. 10 Feb 2010. http://www.cmo.com/social-media/cmos-guide-social-media-landscape —  ---. “Internet, broadband, and cell phone statistics.” Pewinternet.org. Pew Internet, 5 Jan 2010. —  ---. “Michigan’s Home for Plinkit Libraries.” Library of Michigan. 2010. http://michlibrary.org/ —  ALA. “State of America’s Libraries Report.” April 2010. http://www.ala.org/ala/newspresscenter/mediapresscenter/americaslibraries/ALA_Report_2010-ATI001-NEW1.pdf —  Armano, David. “Six Social Media Trends for 2010.” November 2009 http://blogs.harvardbusiness.org/cs/2009/11/six_social_media_trends.html —  boyd, danah. "Incantations for Muggles: The Role of Ubiquitous Web 2.0 Technologies in Everyday Life.” 28 March 2007. http://www.danah.org/papers/Etch2007.html —  Kagan, Marta. “What the F**K is Social Media: One Year Later.” Brand Infiltration. 2008. http://www.slideshare.net/mzkagan/what-the-fk-is-social-media-one-year-later —  Kagan, Marta. “What is Social Media NOW.” Brand Infiltration. 2010. http://www.slideshare.net/mzkagan/what-is- social-media-now-4747765 —  O’Reilly, Tim. “What is Web 2.0: Design Patterns and Business Models for the Next Generation of Software.” O'Reilly Media. 30 Sept. 2009. http://oreilly.com/lpt/a/6228 —  O’Reilly, Tim. “Web Squared: Web 2.0 Five Years On.” Web2.0 Summit.” October 2009. http://www.web2summit.com/web2009/public/schedule/detail/10194 —  Rabey, Lisa. “Your Virtual Front Door: Defining the Use of Social Media for Archives and Libraries.” October 2010. http://archivemediapartners.com/AMPed/category/virtual-front-door/ —  Rogers, Curtis. “Social Media, Libraries, and Web 2.0: How American Libraries are Using New Tools for Public Relations and to Attract new Users. Nov 2009. http://www.slideshare.net/crr29061/social-media-libraries-and-web-20-how-american-libraries-are-using-new-tools- for-public-relations-and-to-attract-new-users-second-survey-november-2009 —  Rogers, Curtis. “Social Media, Libraries, and Web 2.0: How American Libraries are Using New Tools for Public Relations and to Attract new Users. Nov 2009. http://curtisrogers.blogspot.com/2009/12/social-media-libraries-and-web-20-how.html —  Sniderman, Zachary. “Why Smartphone Adoption May Not Be as Big as You Think.” Mashable.com. Mashable, 26 Aug 2010. http://mashable.com/2010/08/26/smartphone-adoption-trends/