110 · Survey Results: Survey Questions and Responses
Additional Comments
34. Please enter any additional information regarding social software initiatives and activities at your
library that may assist the authors in accurately analyzing the results of this survey. N=17
“At the Libraries, most social software usage has been on an individual/ad hoc basis or used internally. The
Libraries has been slow to adopt social software in a centralized/organized manner, although our parent
university is quite advanced, using Google Apps, etc. We are planning to put greater emphasis on social
software. Our Advanced Library Technology group, created last year, is currently evaluating LibGuides, for
instance. We recently launched reference chat.”
“Because we are a large, decentralized library and work on social software initiatives is carried out as needed
by library staff, there is no way to calculate how much time is spent on those sites. Similarly, some library staff
might be working on be noteworthy initiatives that the survey compiler didn’t know about.”
“I find that it’s more helpful to call these kinds of services ‘participatory’ rather than ‘social’ since it has a
different set of implications and allows for a broader set of goals. I think we’re in a phase with these kinds of
tools now that similar to where we were with Internet tools generally in the mid 1990s. Right now only a few
staff are making effective use of them and they’re seen as a kind of add-on to more traditional services, but
pretty soon participatory elements will be part of all the online services we provide, just as Web and e-mail
have become part of everything we do in libraries.”
“It was difficult to answer the question on staff participation in social networking. Many of our staff are
involved personally in social networking (Facebook, MySpace, LibraryThing, etc. and personal blogs) It would
be impossible to estimate the number, but I believe it is large.”
“Our ‘project SimpLR’ was developed as a result of what we learned in our User Needs Study.”
“Please see the working group Wiki. It’s hard to answer many of these questions because we do much of this
as part of our normal work and not as something special or different, so all of the little pieces are hard to
tabulate for FTE time and training. It’s been very organically and grass-roots development and use.”
“The Director of the Law Library has had an active and popular ‘Check this Out’ PodCast since 2005.”
“The FTE and percentages I gave you are probably wildly inaccurate. That would take a long time to really get
perfect. I did my best!”
“The library is exploring new applications related to social software. For example, we are considering
replacing our current subject guide template with Springshare’s LibGuides, a commercial product, but one
which enables connections with many social software products—like Facebook and YouTube—and also
relies on the insights of the social software products for its own design. The library also implements a series
of informal training sessions, called ‘Not for Geeks Only,’ that are intended to demonstrate social software
products and encourage their use and application to solving library problems.”
“The library is in the midst of a total website redesign. In updating and overhauling the Web site, we hope to
be able to take advantage of more social networking tools. In addition, the version of the library catalog in
Encore will allow us to use some social networking tools in the catalog.”
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