MeeboMe, Yahoo! Answers, and much more

David Lee King has a great post about adding MeeboMe to the library catalogue, so that when users do a search and receive no hits, a MeeboMe widget pops up and they have the option to chat to a librarian. This is perfect; it’s obvious from looking at search logs  that many failed searches could be improved relatively easily, if only the user could talk to a librarian who understands the idiosyncrasies of the catalogue.

Sarah Houghton-Jan and Michael Stephens comment. Micheal’s post led me back to an earlier article of his from TechSource which is worth a look.

The blogosphere has been buzzing (well, a low hum maybe) about Slate’s article criticizing Yahoo Answers. Tim Lee at Techdirt agrees, while Jessamyn West is more critical of the Slate piece. I responded on librarian.net, so will just point you to my answer there.

Students 2.0: “we are students… but now we have a voice”. Interesting idea (though of course students have long had voices; one could easily argue that students recently have been much less interested in using them than their predecessors from the 1960s-80s.) This looks like an attempt to reverse that process, and is to be welcomed, especially by those of us in academic libraries. I’ve only glanced through the site, but the posts look to be interesting and well-written. Subscribed. (Via Michael Stephens).

Danah Boyd on information access in a networked world. I was going to write something in response to this, but I’m running out of time and it’s kinda old now. But go read.

Jenny Levine on gaming in the library – for senior citizens.

Citizen journalism site sued over user-posted content (Techdirt). An issue for libraries, especially now that more libraries are (rightly) offering users the chance to interact with their content via blogs or the OPAC?

Writing for the web presentation (Courtney Johnston, National Library) (just the slides; some good stuff here).

Meredith Farkas on the health of organisations. Encouragement of workers by management, and an interest in staff professional development, seem to be key.

Michael Stephens reports a student sit-in, filmed on YouTube, against poor library opening hours. Both sad (that the students needed to protest) and inspiring (that they cared enough to do so). A comment on TameTheWeb notes that the library has listened to the protesters.

Sarah Houghton-Jan on the black market in holds. Sarah makes a fair point – only some users know about holds, and they have a huge advantage over the others when it comesto accessing popular materials. Further, it means the most popular books are almost never on the shelves. Like Sarah, I’m not sure what the answer is, though.

Code4Lib now has an open access library science journal.

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About simonchamberlain

New Zealand librarian and music fan, living in London.
This entry was posted in internet, library catalogues. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to MeeboMe, Yahoo! Answers, and much more

  1. Judi Kercher says:

    I was interested to see the link to the student protest about poor library opening hours. I wonder if the poor hours were due to budget cuts and an attempt to save money. Certainly this has been the case in New Zealand. But the upshot often is that the cuts have to be made elsewhere which will affect services to students in a less visible manner. The powers that be still don’t seem to realise the importance of the library to academic life, preferring, instead to pour money into new buildings which are viewed as more important investments.

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