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18 Jan 2008 / Julie

Not Interested: connecting to a librarian in social web spaces

I keep hearing that librarians want to connect with their customers in spaces where they are- like facebook, myspace, etc. Did we ever ask what THEY want?

Today, an article in The Chronicle’s Wired Campus Blog mentions that in a University of Michigan survey, “half those answering the survey said they were not interested in communicating with a librarian via Facebook or MySpace.” Interesting.

A profession in another article on the same blog seems to think that “people tend to be loyal to one social-networking site, though that relationship is often fleeting.” Well I think I’m amongst those who get bored quickly and move on just as quick to something else before the process starts over again- but I’ve stuck with Facebook for a few years now. MySpace for longer- although maybe there’s something to be said here- I only go to Facebook when I get an email saying something’s happened and I try to avoid MySpace cause it’s too flashy and high-schooly.

While I worry that librarians think they need to do something without having asked the people it has to do with I am most concerned that the reason these surveyed students weren’t interested in communicating with a librarian via Facebook is because their idea of librarian is still of a stodgy, old, unhip librarian with a bad customer service rep…. hmm.

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