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While you can’t yet make a trip to Washington D.C. and have casual perusal of all the world’s tweets, the technology to do exactly that is readily available—for a cost. Gnip, the organization feeding the tweets to the Library, is a social media data company that has exclusive access to the Twitter “firehose,” the never-ending, comprehensive stream of all of our tweets. Companies such as IBM pay for Gnip’s services, which also include access to posts from other social networks like Facebook and Tumblr. The company also works with academics and public policy experts, the type of people likely to make use of a free, government-sponsored Twitter archive when it comes to fruition.
The key point that I want to make in this first of perhaps a few blog posts on all of these ideas is that the human behind the keyboard is just as important if not more important than the keyboard and CPU they wield. It is also important to set forth that cyberspace is only a place in the cognitive dissonance that we are all deluding ourselves into believing. In reality cyberspace is in fact what is between our ears and the internet is a medium with which we fabricate a social contract to communicate with each other, transfer data with, and potentially wage war.
New CEO Marissa Mayer launched a redesigned version of the Yahoo homepage on Wednesday, but the site’s new features seem like a lukewarm rehash of the company’s old portal strategy and imitations of what Facebook offers.
Butler University Q&A Intelligence Index
A new study using the Butler University Q&A Intelligence Index measures how various mobile Q&A platforms deliver quality, accurate answers in a timely manner to a broad variety of questions. Based on the results of our analysis, ChaCha led all Q&A platforms on mobile devices.
The social media site goodreads.com is exploding in popularity as a platform for finding and sharing and, yes, marketing books.
Interesting story from Rutgers University about an academic librarian who is pursuing a study of what happens to children in popular YouTube videos after their fifteen minutes/seconds of fame have ended.
Child-centric viral videos are turning young stars into internet sensations, but a Rutgers–Camden researcher warns against exploiting the children by cashing in on the fame.
“We just don’t know what kinds of affect this internet fame will have on these children in the future,” says Katie Elson Anderson, a librarian at the Paul Robeson Library on the Rutgers–Camden campus.
Anderson has examined the implications of the YouTube videos for her essay, “Configuring Childhood on the Web,” which is featured as a chapter in the book Portrayals of Children in Popular Culture: Fleeting Images (Lexington Books, 2012).
“Viral videos starring children have become a real phenomenon,” Anderson says. “David After Dentist,” the video in which a father taped his young son dealing with the effects of anesthesia, has been viewed more than 117 million times. “Charlie Bit My Finger,” in which a baby boy bites his big brother, has been seen more than 511 million times.
“I think the early videos — the ones with Charlie and David, for example — were organic,” Anderson says. “People didn’t really know that these videos could become viral. They just posted videos for family. Now, it seems that people are posting videos because they are seeing the fame that can result from it. There’s actually money to be made.”
Slashdot's great headline "Internet-Deprived Kids Turning To 'McLibraries' 315" for This WSJ Article on the digital divide was great.... "In many communities, after the library and the computer lab close for the night, there is often only one place to turn for students without internet access at home: the local McDonald's."
Emily Lloyd:...is the name of a brief slide deck & guest post I have up at Tame The Web, a kind of part two to an earlier guest post on tweeting libraries. I've embedded the slide deck below, too--please set it to full screen if you decide to view it.
I spent a lot of time on Twitter last year, not as myself, but as my library system*. This deck covers some of what I learned. I strongly urge tweeting libraries (and nonprofits, and small businesses, etc) to follow their patrons. Many don't. It's too big a missed opportunity not to mention.
Results of a recent Pew Research Study are reported in Publishers Weekly.
The singular most important finding in the latest Pew study, Library Services in the Digital Age, is that libraries—in the opinion of most Americans—aren’t just about books. 80% of U.S. residents say that lending books is a “very important” service, but they rate the help they get from reference librarians as equally important. And nearly the same number, 77%, reported that free access to technology and the Internet is also very important. This triumvirate—books, help, and technology—runs through the entire report.
Could the library brand—historically bound to book borrowing—be undergoing a transformation? In the last major study of users, OCLC’s Perception of Libraries, 2010, patrons were asked to associate the first thing that came to mind when they thought of libraries. And for 75% of the respondents, the answer was books. While Pew didn’t play the same association game, it seems that Pew’s users have a more nuanced take on the library’s role.
The Pew study is based on landline and cell phone interviews conducted in English and Spanish, with a nationally representative sample of 2,252 people ages 16 and older. It could be that the study tapped into a younger demographic who make greater use of library technology. Or perhaps the recession, which has forced millions to rediscover libraries, was a catalyst for users to take fuller advantage of what the library offers.
Copy of the results of this latest study here. According to the authors "Patrons embrace new technologies – and would welcome more. But many still want printed books to hold their central place."
This week's episode looks around the LISHost galaxy while looking at some ambiguous information in a speculative manner.
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