The Development of a Blog and Social Media Plan for “LibraryCurrents.com”

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In late 2011 as I was finishing my first semester in LIS Grad School, an idea for a blog formed in my head. I had just completed my term paper for LIBR 200 (Information & Society), which detailed the history of Library 2.0 and Learning 2.0, exciting new philosophies which focus on connecting people using social media technologies in libraries. My paper detailed the new competencies of librarians and how they are transforming the librarian’s role from information gatekeeper to information guru, a new role which encourages continuous personal development for librarians and lifelong learning.

The blog idea was “Library Currents.” The word “currents” has two meanings: one is an adjective, the other a noun. From dictionary.com, the adjectival definition is:

cur-rent [kur-uh nt] adjective belonging to the time actually passing: popular; in vogue.

The nounal definition reads:

cur-rent [kur-uh nt] noun a flowing; something that flows; the speed at which it flows

I would add that the adjectival meaning of “current” includes the concept of trends, a word that we see often when it comes to technology. Even the LIS social media expert Michael Stephens emphasizes librarians to become trendspotters for new social media technologies (Stephens, 2007). Showing how trends in social media technologies can impact library service is a key idea that could be explored in Library Currents. (I’m also excited to be working with Prof. Michael Stephens on this blog project, as he is my LIBR 298 Special Studies adviser!)

This project blog’s goals are to research the concept for a blog, develop a social media plan, test and implement the applications that will form the architecture of the blog, create the initial content, and evaluate the site for user feedback.

The original concept of Library Currents was to create a blog that reviewed social media technologies and websites, and include them into a directory that librarians could access for reference work. The planning and research steps of this project will be to determine if this is the correct approach to the blog, if there are other blogs out there like this, and whether the concept of “Library Currents” should be entirely different. In the first phase, I will keep my mind open to suggestions, and get a feel for the concept, which will be solidified in the Social Media Plan that will be written at the end of September. The actual website blog LibraryCurrents.com will be developed in October, and launched in November with new content.

I’m really excited about this blog, as it will add more conversation in the library field about the role of social media. Since this is a project, I encourage you to leave a comment about your views or opinions about “Library Currents,” social media, or leave suggestions about resources. I hope to eventually collaborate with others in the LIS field on Library Currents when it gains momentum as a library resource!  And have some fun, too! 🙂

Sources:
Stephens, M. (2007, September/October). Technology trends for a 2.0 world. Library Technology Reports.

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Mickel is an MLIS and the creator of Library Currents. His inspiration for the blog was the SJSU course "The Hyperlinked Library" taught by Dr. Michael Stephens, a course that is also a worldwide MOOC. If you wish to contact him, feel free to write to Mickel Paris at librarycurrents1@aol.com.

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