November 19, 2008

Go Online

I’m lucky enough to be speaking at next month’s Online Information 2008 conference in London, where I’ll be speaking about new media channels for libraries (in other words, getting your content out in front of users where they already are). I’m in the Brave New World for Libraries and Publishers track on day one, but there are many sessions at this media conference that should be of interest to librarians. I’m looking forward to seeing sessions in the Order Out of Chaos: Creating Structure in Our Universe and Information Professionals Surviving and Thriving in the New Age, among others. I’ll also be moderating the Knowledge Structuring in a Semantic World session on day two.

The conference organizers have just posted a podcast interview with me, which is just one in a series with some of the speakers. They’ve organized quite a line-up of presenters, starting with conference opener Clay Shirky (hear his interview here). If you’ve never heard Clay speak, I encourage you to take advantage of this opportunity. I guarantee you won’t regret it.

Please feel free to submit questions ahead of time, and if you’re attending, please introduce yourself. Also, I’m still looking for examples of libraries taking advantage of RSS to display their content on external sites. If you know of any, please leave me a comment here.


6:40 am Comments (7)

November 15, 2008

Go Have Fun at the Library – It’s National Gaming Day!

A reminder that today is National Gaming Day @ your library. All types of games are included, and not just for teens, plus 150 libraries participating in videogame tournaments (you can watch one of the brackets online to find out who wins!). The tag for tracking afterwards is ngd2008.

National Gaming Day @ your library logo

There are more than 600 libraries on the map, and I’m sure there are more we don’t know about. It warms my heart. 🙂

Have fun everyone!


2:13 pm Comments (2)

November 13, 2008

John Palfrey: “Born Digital” Presentation

Notes from John Palfrey’s talk for the MacArthur Foundation at Google Chicago

point of the book Born Digital was to bust some of the myths and look at differences in behavior between digital natives and people like their grandparents

shouldn’t treat everybody the same way just because they have the same technology – may not use it the same way
how they define this specific group of kids (not all millennials) – born after 1980, access to the technology (only 1 billion people), skills to use it

5 characteristics

1. “I blog therefore I am”
express their identity online and offline – they don’t distinguish between the two
avatars as another version of identity
one difference is “subscribe to *me*”

2. multitaskers
a lot of debate over multitasking and what it is, but they’re doing multiple things at once
example of game in which boys tried to maintain as many IM conversations with as many girls as they could at once

3. consumers to creators
interact with digital format – seems self-evident, but presumption is immediate access because digital (eg, digital camera vs a disposable one); movie theater vs YouTube, print vs searchable text
presumption of media in digital form and that it’s social and shared

held a contest to design the logo for “Digital Natives” project at Harvard Law School – got 136 entries (32 from the kid who won), just for the glory (no prize)

4. mash up different media, putting different forms of media together

comes down to a series of technologies – RSS, Google Docs, lightweight collaborative tools

5. an international perspective
“couchsurfing” Google Maps mashup – 89,000 friendships created

(I think these were the five characteristics, but I wasn’t paying attention to numbering until later)

Issues: Security

security – Internet Safety Technical Task Force (Texas is the only state not participating in this!)
“stranger danger” is number one fear
data shows kids are not any less safe than they were 10 years ago (fewer incidents), although some kids do meet their attackers online (it’s become a public park in some ways)

bullying is borne out by the data, though – clearly an increase in this, although maybe it’s more that adults can see it now, as opposed to in the past (it’s asynchronous and persistent now)

social networks:
– unintended audience
– replicability
– persistence
– searchability
– unintentional contributions

adults on dating sites are just at bad as posting too much personal information as kids are on myspace, etc.

his big fear now is “digital dossiers,” which start as early as sonograms

sidebar: what is a book? why take digital information about digital behavior and put it in print?
didn’t write the book for kids, because they won’t read it
the book started as research posted in Basecamp
put chapters on a wiki

Issues: Privacy

kids like 3-5 minute videos, so this summer they gave some money to a few interns and had them remake each chapter into a video that they then put on YouTube
showed the video on “digital dossiers”

Issues: Intellectual Property

copyright piracy – notion of “sticking it to the man” still an excuse
kids that did get music from iTunes used gift certificates (often from parents), so they were actually kind of downloading it the same way – for free

remix issues – enormous confusion on this score
once a kid sees the artist, or once they become a creator, they start to think differently about piracy
but there’s an enormous range of understanding about this
played the video of the piracy chapter

Issues: Credibility

misinformation, cheating, hidden influencers, blogs, wikipedia
generally, kids don’t go to the library unless forced to go there
“I went to the library on a field trip once”
Harvard libraries are packed but with kids using laptops, not books

information overload – is it real? can you get addicted to this stuff?
thinks we have to take seriously the idea that you need filtering tools for all of this

Opportunities

there are corresponding benefits and opportunities in each of these problem areas
creativity, media literacy, social production, semiotic democracy

a world where people can remix culture and history – it’s much more powerful outside the US but still important for democracy here

knowledge creation, equity/democratic, participatory

empowering individuals, access to information, information creation

digitalnative.org
join the Facebook group

ended book on the chapter on activism – some young people are very involved with using these skills and tools to change the world and participate
Obama campaign as an example

have to choose how we embrace these things while fighting the worst of them

Questions

– what was the cutoff point for the upper age of kids since those born in 1980 would be in graduate school now
– older kids were actually more sophisticated and thoughtful about issues like privacy, showing that kids do learn; bigger concern might be the gap in the understanding of parents and teachers

– parents who didn’t go to college have less experience in this area for educating kids about this stuff or showing them how to be creative with these tools
if this is a crucial life skill, then we need to rethink this

– attitudes from the data about news?
– they asked a lot of questions, and kids don’t read the NYT cover to cover or watch the evening news (this is a big generational difference – everybody doesn’t get the same truth anymore); they graze for headlines (which might be through RSS, a Facebook feed, on a mobile device, etc.) – getting lots and lots of facts; a smaller number of them would “deep dive” and click on the link; fewer still engaged in a feedback cycle (post it, critique it, etc.); if the net effect is that we have everybody getting a shallow version of the news & the most sophisticated ones are doing the most with it (triangulating data, etc.), then that’s problematic; asked if anyone has ever edited a Wikipedia page – only a few had ever done edits, and they were usually to fix typos – didn’t find this recreation of the knowledge store

– did your research show what might happen when digital natives become old enough to change our IP law, fair use for example?
– copyright law used to matter only to map makers, etc., but now it matters to everyone; long way from being changed


12:17 am Comments (5)

November 10, 2008

Banking 2.0




Banking 2.0
Originally uploaded by The Shifted Librarian

I love that my bank is making it easier for me to do business with them by no longer requiring me to put deposits in envelopes. I can just imagine the committee meetings for this one:

  • But we’ve never done that before.
  • But it will mean more work for our staff.
  • But we don’t know what crazy thing might happen.
  • And on and on

This makes my user experience easier and more convenient, which I really appreciate. And of course, those who still want to use envelopes can do so.

What small things can your library do to make your services (both in your building and online) easier and more convenient for your users?


1:39 pm Comments (6)

November 4, 2008

Some Quick Gaming Notes

  • I thought I had blogged about National Gaming Day @ your library, but amazingly I haven’t – sorry about that. This is a national event coordinated by ALA on November 15 that celebrates the opportunities libraries offer for play between diverse groups of people in a safe, non-commercialized environment. To help promote this event, Hasbro is sending a copy of the game Pictureka! to every public library in the U.S. (thanks, Hasbro!). The shipments have gone out so if you’re at a PL, you should automatically receive your game in the next week or so. Suggestions for how to use the game (and others) are available on ALA’s Games and Gaming Resources wiki, and Scott Nicholson has made a great video showing how to play the game, which also suggests other NGD activities, too.

    In addition, Wizards of the Coast donated two gaming kits to libraries that signed up to receive them (sorry, but that offer expired last week), so I want to thank them, too. It’s *very* easy to participate in National Gaming Day, so I hope to see your library on the map. If it’s too late for you to do something this year, you can start planning now for next year’s event on November 14, 2009.
     

  • The ALA TechSource Gaming, Learning, and Libraries Symposium ends today, and the tag is GLLS2008 so you can track it on sites like Flickr and Twitter. What a great group this has been. Thank you to everyone who came – you all rock! We’ll be collecting slides from presenters and posting them online, along with whatever audio we could capture (not possible in some cases). Give us a few weeks to get all of this posted, but watch the ALA Techsource blog for more info.
     
  • I also want to highlight the 6th Annual Chi TAG conference for folks in the Chicagoland region. This is “the only toy and game fair open to the public,” and it will take place on November 22-23 (Saturday-Sunday) at Navy Pier. The show’s founder, Mary Couzin, is an amazing person, and she’s offering librarians (and educators) free admission to the event. (There’s also a discount parking coupon you can print out from the site.) This is different from a trade show, as it’s a chance to literally sit in the aisles and play boardgames all day. ALA will have a booth there, but I’d be going anyway just to see all of the different games. If you’re in the area, this event is going to be a blast, so come join us!

9:42 am Comments (1)