I don’t do reader’s advisory as part of my job, but I’m always interested in recommendations for what to read next. I’ll have to play around with these the next time I need some reading inspiration. :)
With the current popularity of hackerspaces and makerspaces in libraries, library hack-a-thons, and hacking projects for librarians; it is clear that library culture is warming to the hacker ethic. This is a highly positive trend and one that I encourage more librarians to participate in. The reason I am so excited to see libraries encourage adoption of the hacker ethic is that hackers share several core values with libraries. Working together we can serve our communities more effectively. This may appear to be counter-intuitive, especially due to a very common public misconception that hacker is just another word for computer-criminal. In this post I want to correct this error, explain the values behind the hacker movement, and show how librarians and hackers share core values. It is my hope that this opens the door for more librarians to get started in productive and positive library hackery.
Pew Internet—Libraries, patrons, and e-books: Where people get book recommendations (Among Americans ages 16+)
What really distanced me from the presentation and the promise was that readers advisory is for “people [who] have bad taste.”
No, no they don’t. Readers have a range of tastes and diets; and maybe back in 1950, or in some areas here and there, librarians still believe that people have bad taste and their job is to feed them the classics and literary fiction.
Not my librarian tribe. Not at the readers advisory round-table in my state association. Not among the librarians I meet through YALSA and ALSC and ALA, via Twitter and blogs, online and in person. Readers advisory is connecting people to the books they want and need to read. It’s an art, not a science; and it’s not easy or simple.
Practicing readers advisory means more than being a reader. It’s having a broad reading diet, and knowing about books outside of one’s own favorite genres; it’s knowing how to ask good questions about people’s reading habits & preferences, being able to detect accurately what kind of reading experience they want NEXT, and knowing how to make good suggestions even OUTSIDE of one’s own reading preferences (romance when you love thrillers, or historical fiction when you love fantasy & so on).
However, it was the discovery of Wild’s publisher that brought up a much more pertinent question in this whole deal as it relates to libraries: what happens when Oprah picks a book that is from one of the Big Six publishers but is not from Random House or HarperCollins? In the case of a book choice from Hachette, MacMillan, Penguin, or Simon & Schuster (all of the publishers that do not allow library eBook lending), what happens to libraries and the digital edition? Without a doubt, these publishers would loveto get their book onto the Book Club 2.0 list. It’s a powerful Oprah-style publicity ride for their author and the book, capable of pushing books up the sales list as well as cementing an author onto the scene. It’s a prize to be won, for certain, since the rewards are quite lavish. It’s a no-brainer to say that the Oprah special digital edition will not be available for libraries if it is one of the four publishers mentioned.
When it comes to pass (and I will bet dollars to donuts that it will) that Oprah picks a book from a publisher that won’t allow library eBook lending, what will we do? We will have an excellent teachable moment and we can’t squander it.
There is a weight to a physical book, and I don’t mean a physical heft. Books have a meaning, a significance in our culture. They hold untold promises and infinite possibilities. Books are objects of art. Carrying or owning books implies that you’re intelligent. Books = good things.
And for all of the years that I’ve been talking about digital libraries, using technology to improve yourself and your community, and even about eBooks specifically…I privately hated eBooks. I hated the technology that locked them down, I hated how they worked (or rather didn’t), I hated the thought of reading on a screen, just…hated…them. I clung to my printed books. I told no one about this little love-hate relationship with the eBook; only a few people close to me ever knew.And then (as is wont to happen) the technology got better and I had to eat my own words. The consumer-level experience of finding and obtaining an eBook got better (sadly, the library eBook experience is still pretty crap). […]
There is always a small group of consumers who think it’s hilarious to upload pictures of nudity, or swear on screen, to deliberately try to damage the brand’s reputation or just for the fun of it.
The bigger the potential embarrassment to the brand (i.e., the bigger the audience witnessing the naked picture), the more likely people are to post inappropriate content.
It’s good practice for brands that use social media during live events to make sure they manage it properly. I recommend that if you’re using social media streaming at a live event you use pre-moderation, and use the right kind.
Some good tips for those who are moderating social media streams at live events, particularly if the stream is being broadcast in some manner (on TV/large screens/etc.).
Booklamp.org is the result of an exploratory project intended to help you find new books by comparing the content of the books themselves, similar to the way that Pandora.com matches music lovers to new music. We’re attempting to help you find books with similar themes and writing style to books you’ve enjoyed in the past - comparing elements like Description, Pacing, Density, Perspective, and Dialog - while at the same time allowing you to specify details like… more Medieval Weapons.
Right now the biggest issue is the limited size of their database (they don’t have Tolkien, for example), but this could be an interesting tool.