Part 2: (a) Evaluative statement
The following three OLJ tasks have been used to meet the learning objectives for INF506. These are entitled:
- What is Web 2.0?
- Definition of an information professional in a Web 2.0 world
- Online identity
These three posts have introduced issues surrounding the changing world of libraries, both in the way libraries operate and the expectations put on library staff as well as the way the library’s users behave and the systems they now expect to have available to them.
Our information systems are constantly evolving and changing. Nowhere is this more apparent than in library systems and for information professionals. The whole concept of Web 2.0, which I covered in the OLJ post “What is Web 2.0?”, takes the web from static pages to interactive platforms, and has opened up a whole new world for both social and educational use. Partridge (2011) takes the Web 2.0 definitions a step further and develops a term called “Librarian 2.0”. This information professional needs a wide mix of transferable skills, which include personal communication skills and lifelong learning, combined with business and technical skills. This is covered in more detail in the OLJ post, “Definition of an information professional in a Web 2.0 world”. One of the most interesting things to come out of this study is that Partridge urges us that in order to be competent information professional in a Web 2.0 world, we must first adopt a positive attitude and mindset that will embrace change and progress. The libraries of the 21st century are now expected to be a community and digital hub of lifelong learning. People have less time and expect more. As the Netherlands Institute for Public Libraries, (2014), points out, the library of 21st century will become a social learning platform where its visitors have ready access to the latest resources.
This change and exciting new world can also come at a price. With the introduction and availability of so many social networking platforms, security will also be a major issue. The issue of online identities and privacy is covered in the OLJ post, “Online identities”. I was surprised to learn that for many users of social media (Raynes-Goldie’s, 2010) the concern is more about “social privacy” than what large companies are actually doing with the user’s private information that is collected from these marketing platforms. Adequate security measures to ensure a safe online environment will always need to be a priority in any educational institution. This is largely due to the fact that, for students of today, blogging, sharing information on Facebook and Twitter and using the internet and connecting through the web is a part of their daily lives.
Using social networking sites has been a major learning curve for me during this course. Studying online as a distance education student and using forums, podcasts, and Facebook groups has opened up a whole new study world. It has also helped diminish the isolation of studying as a distance education student. As a beginner librarian this subject was particularly pertinent to me. From exploring the second generation of Web 2.0 and its interactive uses, to defining the role of an information professional in a Web 2.0 world, along with an insight into the fascinating world of online identities and profiles, I have covered many new areas that are not only important as a librarian but as a student as well. All in all, I have learned many new skills and have benefitted both personally and academically from studying INF506.
Part 2: (b) Reflective Statement
For the first post on my OLJ for INF506,
I was asked to describe what social networking meant to me. I recall describing it in one word as “scary”. I also posted that I enrolled in this subject to help confront my fears and learn more about social networking and become more comfortable with it. I am happy to report that thanks to the wonderful support I’ve received throughout this subject I am well and truly on my way to achieving my goal. The learning modules have been great, set out in a way that are easy to follow and understand, and the links taking us to different social networking services and tutorials are just what a beginner like me needed. The lecturer and other students are also a great source of support. At first I missed having a subject forum and using Facebook to ask questions, post comments etc. was a little uncomfortable for me. Although I followed the posts from other group members, I did not contribute so much, but once I overcame this hesitation and started contributing to the INF506 Facebook group I really enjoyed it. I have also felt that I got to “know” some of the students more as well, and it was great seeing their posts with snapshots of their life outside of unit as well as course related posts. The whole idea of a Facebook group does help make you feel part of an extended “family”.
Having the opportunity to explore the definitions of Web 2.0,
and what this means in relation to being a librarian of the 21st century was very exciting. The use of podcasts, blogs and forums from an educational perspective was of particular interest to me as a distance education and online student. Social networking services really have changed the classroom today, and opened up a whole new frontier of learning for students young and old.
The subject of online identities and online privacy is a subject that has always fascinated me,
I have always been curious as to why people would choose to share their most intimate details or personal information with a complete stranger in cyber space. I found it particularly interesting to discover that most people are prepared to give up some of this privacy for the benefits of what they gain from these online sites, in particular Facebook. I find the information students give out on our university forums and Facebook group is similar to what you may find in a traditional classroom setting; some are happy to share or give out glimpses of their personal life and others prefer to remain private. It is all about what the individual is comfortable with.
Exploring the definition of an information professional in a Web 2.0 was a real learning experience for me,
I especially enjoyed reading Cohen’s Manifesto (2006). It was as thought this was written with people like me in mind. I particularly loved the quote about “not fearing Google or other related services!” This is a reading I will continue to revisit time and time again, as I continue on my path to striving to become a successful librarian.
This subject has brought me so much on both a personal and educational level. However if I had to pick the reading that resounded most strongly for me personally, it is the one from Partridge (2011). I found it whilst researching an assignment for this course. She advocates that the biggest attribute for a successful information professional in a Web 2.0 world is to change their mindset and have a positive attitude to embrace the new changes that are taking place. This is particularly important for us not only as information professionals, but also so that we can present our libraries as a community hub of lifelong learning.
What is 2.0? Definition of terms used in the technology classroom.
What is Web 2.0? Webopedia
Anderson, P. (2007) What is Web 2.0? Ideas, technologies and implications for
Education, JISC Technology and Standards Watch, from
Cohen, L. (2006). A Librarian’s 2.0 Manifesto. Retrieved from
Partridge, H. (2011). Being “Librarian 2.0”: It’s all in the attitude. Library Connect. Retrieved from
Raynes-Goldie, K. (2010). Aliases, creeping, and wall cleaning: Understanding privacy in the age of Facebook, First Monday, 15(1), 4 January. Available http://firstmonday.org/htbin/cgiwrap/bin/ojs/index.php/fm/article/view/2775/2432
De Rosa, C., Cantrell, J., Havens, A., Hawk, J. & Jenkins, L. (2007). Section 3: Privacy, Security and Trust. In Sharing privacy and trust in our networked world: A report to the OCLC membership. Dublin, Ohio: OCLC. [ebook] Availablehttp://www.oclc.org/reports/pdfs/sharing_part3.pdf
Mallan, K. & Giardina, N. (2009). Wikidentities: Young people collaborating on virtual identities in social network sites, First Monday, 14(6), 1 June. Available
The Netherlands Institute for Public Libraries, (2014). The library of the future, hub for knowledge, contact and culture, The Hague, January 2014, from