Doing this subject has been quite a journey and I still have a lot to learn. For me it takes time to familiarise myself with each tool, and I still have a long way to go before fully appreciating the value (and the downsides) to each of them. Sometimes found the amount of information and the many ways it could be accessed a bit overwhelming.

I have found Twitter exhilarating and addictive, the way it connects to many people and organisations, linking people to different ideas, websites, etc. I find it a useful tool to expand my knowledge in so many ways. But I have been a ‘lurker’ more than a contributor, not quite ready to become an active tweeter.


Delicious, as discussed in previous post, exposed me to an amazing richness of resources, thinkers, ideas.


And I can’t wait to start blogging properly, and using sites like Flickr, on my own terms, as a way of sharing with the world, and developing both personally and professionally. I have become even more addicted to Facebook (is this a development?) and am using Facebook groups both personally and professionally to create communities.

This subject highlighted the need to be aware of, and in touch with, different manifestations of Library 2.0, and beyond, and how important it is for us to be willing to change and adapt as people’s information needs change and as different technologies make more things possible. But more than just helping people negotiate the new information landscape, there are so many other possibilities –helping others be creators not just consumers, and being active ourselves in creating communities, and contributing to the information landscape. This was highlighted for me by the other assignment, where a small community was created and willingly shared ideas and thoughts, expanding my idea of what was possible.

But while I am inspired by the possibilities offered by social media, there is frustration too – partly because these possibilities cannot always be fully explored in a work context due to cautiousness on the part of the organisation I work for or because of a lack of resources.

As discussed in the forums, and in my own experience of working in a public library, rules and regulations of different libraries, schools, etc., hinder the full potential offered by social media. This at a time when libraries need to reinvent themselves to stay relevant, and issues such as the digital divide are preventing people from being able to fully contribute to and participate in their community.

On a personal level there is also the pace at which I can acquire the necessary skills, which I feel sometimes to be frustratingly slow.

The possibilities outside of work, but in areas of my life that still relate to being an ‘info professional’ –local history, community activities, blogs, art – there is more freedom to explore the possibilities, take risks and develop skills without tripping over the regulations of a large bureaucracy. It is here I feel I can make best use of what I have learnt and what I will learn in relation to social media and the way it is changing the information landscape.

Having fallen into the profession almost by accident and constantly questioning whether Information Studies is what I should be doing, these richness of the Web 2.0 landscape excites me, especially  where I get to create and engage.

And I love finding inspiring thinkers and organisations –new ones on an almost daily basis – whose ideas I can now follow, thanks to my new addiction to both Delicious and Twitter. (Which does make it harder to get assignments done. Time management issues clearly need to be addressed!)

These include people such as Seth Godin, Clay Shirky, Tim O’Reilly who challenge  my way of thinking about this new information environment and inspiring groups such as Global Voices, a global network of ‘citizen media’

The possibilities offered by Web 2.0 and social media are not just tweaking what we do –add a blog here and a Facebook page there to enhance already existing systems –but a radical rethink of what we as information professionals do and what we could do. I’m not sure how this will play out, and I don’t think anyone else does either, but that’s part of the excitement. And we can all play our part to make sure emerging technologies and tools are used for ‘good’ and not ‘evil’, to create amazingness. 


OLJ Module 2 – My Adventure with Delicious

Delicious and other social media such as Twitter and blogs for me were gateways to an amazing amount of information and knowledge, as well as ways of sharing information. Delicious also functions as a way to manage that information. I still need practise in how to fully utilise Delicious. I only just figured out how the ‘for:someone’ tag work (in spite of it being clearly mentioned in Module 2 – oops), directing bookmarks to people’s accounts, and how useful that is in sharing and building a community around common interests. (Becoming a Delicious Power User 2012, para. 10)

And I need to develop tag consistency, something that will help with other social media such as Twitter, blogs, etc, and to start writing notes so I know why I bookmarked things, enriching this as a resource I can share with others.( Becoming a Delicious Power User 2012, para. 4) My stumblings highlight for me the need to be both patient and persistent when it comes to both learning new things ourselves, and when teaching others.

I can’t wait to have more of a Delicious community to share with and learn from. I love the way different social networking sites have complementary functions. For example, Delicious is a great way for me to bookmark sites I discover through Twitter. I would also like to explore other social bookmarking sites such as StumbleUpon or Diigo (Top 15 Most Popular Social Bookmarking Websites 2012), to find other ways to access, share, file and filter information resources.


OLJ Module 3 – A -Z of Social Networking

Ref: Brown, A. (2010) A to Z of Social Networking for Libraries

For me this entry highlighted the importance of us as informational professionals being aware of and developing skills in relation to social media so we can utilise these in the workplace for the benefit of the community (in my case a public library) and being consistent and enthusiastic about the implementation of social media, using whatever is appropriate in a particular context to interact, empower or communicate with the public.

It also highlighted how we can use social media to keep ourselves informed and to share knowledge, create communities and build up resources as we get around heads around the rapid change in the information environment and our roles as information professionals (formally known as librarians?).

OLJ Module 5 – The Digital Divide

There seems to be a growing body of literature addressing the educational and social benefits of ‘play’ in the context of the internet and the way children are taught. As well as the article by Jenkins et al (Jenkins et al 2006), the article By Anne Collier on KQED’s Mind/Shift blog (Collier 2012) says something similar about the importance of ‘fun failure’, creating an environment where it is safe, and fun, for children to fail in order for them to learn. And then there’s Seth Godin’s compelling manifesto (Godin 2012) calling for a more creative approach to schooling to prepare them for a changing future –more innovation, diversity, encouragement of dreams, less obedience. Another thing that particularly inspired me is Sugata Mitra’s  TED talk, ‘the child-driven education’ (Mitra 2010) about children’s ability to learn when they are motivated, can work collaboratively, and have the technology to do it.

We not only need to be aware of the complexities of the digital divide, and play a role in ensuring this is addressed, but be aware of how these issues change over time. The Jenkins article reminds us not to forget basic literacy in all this (Jenkins et al 2006, p19) as well as other literacies concerning ethics in relation the use of social networking and the internet(Jenkins et al 2006 p16), as well as helping young people (and this would apply to others as well) to be discerning about the information they access (Jenkins et al 2006 p15). While it isn’t always easy in context of a public library to fundamentally address all of these, we need to be aware of them and alert to how we can support users and institutions such as schools as best we can. These complexities around digital divide issues need to be addressed in our policies so we tailor programs and services to really meet the needs of our community. Providing computers for public use is not enough. We need to start thinking seriously about the quality of our digital services, whether they are accessed at home or in the library, and see them as as much a part of our job as book collections are. And the physical space needs to be welcoming so people feel comfortable enough to come to the library to ‘just’ play.


Becoming a Delicious Power User (2012), Assorted Stuff/Tech for Learning accessed from  http://www.assortedstuff.com/stuff/?p=286

Brown, A. (2010) A to Z of Social Networking for Libraries accessed from http://socialnetworkinglibrarian.com/2010/01/22/a-to-z-of-social-networking-for-libraries/

Collier, A. (2012) Fun Failure: How to Make Learning Irresistible Mind/Shift How we will learn accessed from


Godin, S. (2012) Stop Stealing Dreams (What is School For?)  retrieved from http://www.sethgodin.com/sg/docs/StopStealingDreamsSCREEN.pdf

Jenkins, H., Clinton, K., Purushotma, R., Robison, A. J., & Weigel, M. (2006). Confronting the challenges of participatory culture: Media education for the 21st century. Accessed from



Mitra, S. (2010) The child driven education, from TED Ideas worth spreading accessed from http://www.ted.com/talks/sugata_mitra_the_child_driven_education.html

Top 15 Most Popular Social Bookmarking Websites (2012) eBiz MBA accessed from http://www.ebizmba.com/articles/social-bookmarking-websites



Info access for all, adequate bandwidth/wireless/mobile connectivity and the ‘digital’ divide

Information and digital literacies and recent emergence of transliteracies

Both these issues – good quality access to information technology and issues of digital and other literacies – are both aspects of the ‘digital divide’.

Both articles, for me, highlighted how necessary it is for public and school libraries to think beyond simply providing access to computers in the belief that this is enough to address issues of the digital divide.

The Bertot article highlights the importance of the services public libraries offer, especially during times of hardship. It looks not just at access to computers but bandwidth, access to databases for study, job searching, accessing services, etc as well as whether libraries offer training. Reflecting on the library where I work, I don’t think we are acknowledging how important some of these issues are. Bandwidth and line-speed are issues that are being addressed, but we treat them more like inconveniences rather than see them in the context of denying people who can least afford it access to information, skills development, etc. And when it comes to training, we offer very little, seeing it as the role of Neighbourhood Houses and Adult learning centres. This may be valid if other services meet these needs, but we need to make sure this is the case.

The other article also points out access to computers is not enough. In the context of young people and education, the authors point out that young people need opportunities to explore, play, develop their skills in what the article calls ‘affinity spaces’ (Jenkins et al, 2006, p9), spaces they feel safe and at home in. This usually only occurs in their leisure time, not at school, so it is the young people who don’t have internet access at home who are disadvantaged. While the article is advocating a change to the way computers are used in schools, public libraries could play a role, ensuring those that need it have access to good quality internet including decent programs and more intelligent filtering. But we also need to make sure young people feel comfortable and welcomed in the space, and are encouraged to be active, intelligent, aware cultural producers, not just consumers(Jenkins et al 2006, p10).  


Bertot, J. C., Jaeger, P. T., McClure, C. R., Wright, C. B., & Jensen, E. (2009). Public libraries and the Internet 2008-2009: Issues, implications, and challenges. First Monday, 14(11).


Jenkins, H., Clinton, K., Purushotma, R., Robison, A. J., & Weigel, M. (2006). Confronting the challenges of participatory culture: Media education for the 21st century.



My experience with Delicious has been a mixed one. Initially I couldn’t set up a properly functioning account using my yahoo email and had to open a gmail account to get the confirmation email I needed to get things working.

The Delicious site was in the process of being redesigned. Initially it was hard to fully gauge it’s functionality as there seemed to be a few issues that were still being worked out. At one point I had no one listed in my networks, even though I knew I was following people.

In spite of this, I want to like Delicious. As a way of saving good websites, blogs, etc, as I find them, and being able to access them from anywhere, not just my home computer, it’s great. I have had little practise with tagging and am loving saving things (and then finding them again) using tags.  Being able to search my saved links, my network and Delicious all at the same time is also really useful. In terms of building up a network of people to follow, I am having a bit more trouble.

No friends I know of have a Delicious account, and I found it harder to find people to follow than with other tools such as Twitter. Having said that, finding one person can lead to a wealth of resources, for example:

Nancy White@choconancy


Once I find more people to follow, I will have a richer resource.

It has the potential to be a very useful tool for public libraries. At the public library where I work there was a push a few years ago to use delicious. While there is still a work delicious account it is underutilised (one or two people in an organisation still use it in a workforce of about 100 people).  The idea was for us to share and build lists of relevant and reliable websites, for both ourselves and the general public.  Hopefully interest in this can be revived. 



A blog is a great way for libraries to inform the public of events, collections and other updates. Local history is one area where blogs seem to work really well, creating a sense that local history is an interesting place of discovery, rather than a static collection. Yarra Plenty has a good example:


Another is children’s services. Once again, Yarra Plenty has a good one:



As one of the strengths of our library is the regular talks by authors and others, podcasting these makes sense as a way of sharing the experience with those that couldn’t be there, and creating an ongoing resource.  In the past these talks were podcast, but this has stopped. Not only would it be a good idea to reinstate podcasts of library events where appropriate, we could expand podcasts to include instructional talks such as how to do family research,  poetry readings, etc, as larger organisations such as the State Library of Victoria does:


We could also have people produce their own podcasts/videos and have them available either in the library or on our website.


A blog to engage young people and Twitter and Facebook accounts to send current information, reminders about events, etc.See Macquarie Regional Library’s blog:


Provide a reliable and fast internet service so they can participate in social media, whether they have access at home or not.


Use tools such as Delicious to build a collection of reliable websites, then posting these on our websites.Using Facebook, blogs and Twitter to promote content we have, the way many museums, libraries and galleries do, such as the State Library of Victoria:


As well as promoting content, we could encourage creation of content, by encouraging people to post local material on the wiki about the northern suburbs of Melbourne, Wikinorthia.



Many staff members are enthusiastic users of Web 2.0 and would love to invest some of that energy in the workplace. Harness the enthusiasm that is there, and forge a way through the overcautiousness of the bureaucracy, create a culture of shared learning, and adequate training so we know what we are doing. 

First entry INF506

Social networking -using the online world to create, interact with other people and groups by sharing information, ideas, images. Social networking allows us to connect with many people, creating communities and making friends without being constrained by physical locality.

I admit I haven’t used social networking that much, except for facebook. I have set up several blogs before and then neglected them. I have read/followed others’ blogs, and love reading the Twitter comments on shows like the ABC’s Q&A, but have avoided participating.

From this course, I would like to feel more at ease with using social networking. I feel I have been an ‘observer’ more than a ‘participant’ which isn’t really in the spirit of social networking. Hopefully I will be able to use what I learn at work, but not sure if this will be possible in the immediate future, which is a shame. I think it would make the library more interesting and relevant if we could.  Outside of work there are many possibilities that I would love to embrace –setting up a local history group, reviving my art blog, and generally using the online world to connect with others and share ideas, stories, art, knowledge, etc.