Posted by: sharonlis768 | December 20, 2007

Readers’ Advisory Service Meets Library 2.0

Abstract for Final Paper

The readers’ advisory function is about connecting leisure readers to books.  Most of the traditional services provided by readers’ advisory librarians in public libraries are the types of services that exemplify Library 2.0 best practices.  One-on-one conversations, formal and informal booktalking, and library-sponsored or serviced book discussion groups are traditional ways librarians have met readers’ needs.  But now, with the explosion of Web 2.0 technologies, readers’ advisory librarians have opportunities to incorporate many new Web 2.0 tools into their readers’ advisory services.  They are able to expand their connections with library patrons, both in traditional settings and the digital world.  RA librarians are producing blogs and podcasts; answering questions through Instant Message; organizing collections with LibraryThing and Shelfari; and commanding a presence in social networking sites such as MySpace and Facebook.  Librarians have used blogs to establish online book clubs for patrons of all ages.  Librarians sponsor book discussions for teens on MySpace.  Both tools are useful for book reviews and author Q&As.  Podcasts are being used for booktalks and author interviews.  Teens and young adults are producing RA content in blogs and podcasts for public library web sites.  Several factors may impact the success of implementing these new tools, including the enthusiasm with which the librarians and the libraries embrace them, and the demographics of the readers that the librarians are serving.

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