Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Library 2.0 Theory : Web 2.0 and Its Implications for Libraries

Maness, Jack. Library 2.0 Theory : Web 2.0 and Its Implications for Libraries [Electronic Version]. Webology 3(2), June 2006.
Abstract :
The article introduces the evolving concept of Web 2.0 technologies and the dramatic changes it brought to traditional libraries. It defines Library 2.0 as the application of interactive, collaborative, and multi-media web-based technologies to web-based library services and collections. A technology that is user-centered, rich in content, interactivity, and social activity. Implications of synchronous messaging, streaming media, blogs and wikis, social networks, tagging, RSS feeds and mashups to library access and services are widely explored in the article. Such implications play major roles in the practice of librarianship nowadays and on the evolution of the libraries in the future.
Three(3) things I learned from the article :
1. Library 2.0 is not about searching, but finding. It is about sharing and not on the access. It reflects the notion that people searches and uses information as communities and not as individuals.
2. Library 2.0 is viewed as a revolutionary tool to libraries and information professionals with shifts to open not just catalogs and collection, but also access to their control, with less secured inventory systems and more collaborative discovery systems. Librarians will also enable users to create systems and services for them.
3. The Web will continue its evolution, so as library technologies. Librarians and libraries must continually adapt to such changes to update the profession and the depository of information.
Reflections :
From email to chat, text-based to streaming media and interactive databases, webmasters to blogs and wikis, OPAC to personalized social network interface, these are but a few dramatic changes brought by the introduction of Web 2.0 technologies or the Library 2.0 technologies in particular to libraries and librarians. Although I'm not that familiar with some of the terminologies of these recent innovations, I am quite certain that I have been using some of it as an information professional and as an end-user. It is therefore a must for us librarians to update ourselves of the latest technologies available for the profession to maximize our potentials and be part of the evolution as agents of change. Library 2.0 offers a democratic approach to access and utilization of information across society. It is an attempt to make information easily available for everybody. On the other hand, there is an underlying question of reliability and authority. The lack of peer review and editorship is a challenge to librarians. It is however a given notion to us to understand and be more critical on such sources of information. Library 2.0 is the current technology available at the moment. It is continually changing. We could only hope that such changes will benefit all sectors of the society and would not bring chaos to human beings especially to us information professionals. Embracing the latest innovations will revolutionize the profession and could be a job option for librarians. Ignoring it could mean being stuck to the traditional practices of librarianship and to a less secured future.

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