Friday, 23 July 2010

Social Networks for Librarians

Facebook and LinkedIn - I have profiles on both of these sites but I can't say I've found either of them particularly useful professionally.

Facebook is good for keeping in touch with family and friends and occasionally I'll share an event, rsvp, 'Like' a page, or add myself as a friend of a library/group/university but I can't imagine using my personal profile here for work or study purposes.  I do think it's worth having a library presence here because some people do like to use it as their starting point for study as well as leisure, provided it's kept up to date and represents the sociable face of the library.  Here's one of the frustrating things about it though - is it possible to see the pages you've 'Liked'?  How useful is it if the user can't find your page again easily?  Am I missing something obvious here?

LinkedIn is more useful professionally, but I think it really depends on the sector.  If you are looking for a job work in business or computing and live near London it's useful to be there because recruitment agencies will find you.  It may be useful for corporate information workers too, but I'm not convinced it will ever work for me in this way.  I have joined some library-related groups such as CILIP, LIBER, New Academic Librarians, YEP! and Irish Public Libraries and sometimes an interesting discussion crops up on one or other of these, but nothing worth writing home about.

Two new networks aimed at UK librarians have been set up, both of which I think will be more useful to me professionally than LinkedIn or Facebook.  The LIS New Professionals Network was set up to support, well, new professionals in the library and information sector (what gave it away?).  There are already some interesting discussions, useful resources and a blog to follow on this site.

The second network (as mentioned previously) is the Librarians as Teachers Network, set up literally this week by Johanna Anderson to support librarians in their teaching role.  This site is very much in development, so come along and help us to decide what should be on it!

Edited to add: I've just heard of via Magister et Mater's blog and am off to explore.  It seems to be closely linked to Facebook though...


  1. I don't know about being able to see a list of all the things you've 'liked'. I've certainly never noticed something like that, but I'm a very lazy Facebook user. I wouldn't be surprised if it wasn't available - there are certainly other interesting 'features' surrounding some of its features, as noted by the bookworm and Miss Crail.

  2. Yes, I loved Miss Crail's comment that Facebook doesn't let you read War and Peace. How peculiar!

  3. I have joined the Librarians as Teachers network site which is great!

  4. Excellent! I know Jo's anxious for feedback on what to include on the site, do you have any suggestions?