Beyond Newsletters: RSS feeds, Blogs and Podcasts
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Beyond Newsletters: RSS feeds, Blogs and Podcasts



Presentation with Bonnie Shucha and Amy Gannaway at Wisconsin Library Ass'n meeting 11/06

Presentation with Bonnie Shucha and Amy Gannaway at Wisconsin Library Ass'n meeting 11/06



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  • Story about how I was introduced to blogging: Two years ago, law faculty talking about blogs As library e-resource specialist, I thought I’d better investigate the whole “blog thing” Started reading blogs – about law, about librarianship, about anything Wouldn’t this be a great marketing & outreach tool? Hey, I can do this so I set up a free site on Blogger WisBlawg became one of the first academic law library blogs – May 2004 Over past 2.5 years, I’ve become somewhat of a blog evangalist – written, presentations, co-chair Blawgs committee This summer at the national law librarians conference in San Antonio, I introduced to a member of the executive board. And his response was, “Oh, you’re the blog lady ” So I guess I can pretty confidently say that I’ve finally got this “blog thing” figured out!

Beyond Newsletters: RSS feeds, Blogs and Podcasts Beyond Newsletters: RSS feeds, Blogs and Podcasts Presentation Transcript

  • Beyond Newsletters: RSS Feeds, Blogs & Podcasts Wisconsin Library Association Annual Conference November 3, 2006
    • First:
      • Examine the tools
    • Then:
      • Explore using them for marketing & communication
  • Blogs
    • A blog IS
    • a Web site
      • But the structure is slightly different than a traditional website
  • The Blogosphere
    • There are 50 Million+ blogs
    • Blogosphere doubles every 6 months
    • On average, two new blogs are created every second
    As of August 2006 from: Sifry’s Alerts
  • Blog Features Brief informational posts in reverse chronological order Archives of previously posted content; Subscription options (appear below) Comment feature offers interactivity Blawg= Law-related blog
    • “ A lot of times in classes, you’re dealing with things that already happened.
    • [Blogging] is a way to actually see a lot of things going on in the world and apply it in class.”
    -- UW-Madison Student Badger Herald , November 17, 2004
  • Kryptonite Locks
  • Finding Blogs – Library Related
    • Blogwithoutalibrary http://www. blogwithoutalibrary .net/links.html
      • List of blogs by library type
    • Library Weblogs http://www. libdex . com/weblogs .html
      • List of blogs by country
  • What does “RSS” stand for?
    • Rich Site Summary
    • Really Simple Syndication
    • RDF Site Summary
  • What are RSS feeds?
    • Family of “web feeds”
      • XML, Atom
    • Feeds send new content to the user – automatic
    • Usually includes headline, link, and summary - can also include TOCs and search results
  • How do you read feeds?
    • Requires software
      • Desktop or Web-based news aggregator
      • E-mail client or Web browser
    • Easiest option: Web-based aggregator
      • Bloglines, MyYahoo, Rojo, Google Reader
  • Options Summary Headline/link Date Author
  • Customized display: headline and summary
  • Headlines only
  • How do you find feeds?
    • Search engines
      • General - use for very narrow search
      • Specialized - Feedster, Newsisfree, Syndic8, Lisfeeds
    • Browsers
      • IE 7, Firefox
    • Look for buttons:
  • RSS Feeds – Custom Blog Feeds
    • Google Blog Search - http: //blogsearch . google .com/
  • Advantages of RSS
    • Customized content in one place
    • Automatic, brings content to you
    • Reduces spam and e-mail
    • Deliver content to multiple devices
      • E-mail, Web browsers, handhelds
  • Disadvantages of RSS
    • Lack of context
    • Content not automatically saved – advantage and disadvantage
    • Potential for exploitation
  • Podcasting - Where Did It Come From? +
  • Podcasting - What is it?
    • “ A podcast is a multimedia file distributed over the Internet using syndication feeds , for playback on mobile devices and personal computers “
    • Wikipedia definition as of 10/27/06
  • Podcasting - Random Facts
    • Download content as a file - unlike streaming, TV, radio
    • Time shifting ability - just like TiVO™
    • Usually audio (mp3), but now with video as well
    • Can subscribe to, or not
    • You don’t even need a pod!
  • How Do I Find Podcasts?
    • iTunes ( )
    • Juice ( )
    • Podcast Alley ( )
    • ( )
    • Bloglines ( )
    • Search engines
    • Friends, colleagues
  • How Do I Use a Podcast?
    • With an aggregator or receiver (shared)
    • With software on your personal computer (like iTunes, Juice or RSSRadio)
    • On a mobile device (mp3 player, PDA, cell phone, etc)
    • On a website using links:
  • How Do I Make a Podcast?
    • Read the Wikipedia article + links
    • Hardware (microphone, computer and/or mp3 player/recorder)
    • Software (Audacity, Adobe Audition, Apple GarageBand, lots of others)
    • Remember the legal stuff -
  • Creating A Library Blog
    • Purpose
      • To communicate with your users
      • To communicate with library staff
  • Creating A Library Blog
    • Considerations
      • Benefits
      • Drawbacks
    • Weigh the cost of your time
    • Assess skills & training time needed
    • Consider other time-consuming projects
    • Consider other blogs, etc. that offer similar information
    Is Blogging Worth Your Time?
  • Blogging Software
    • Blog Software Comparison Chart - blog_software_comparison.cfm
  • Blogging Policies
    • Good policy will:
      • Ensure that blog reflects well on your library
      • Offer guidance to bloggers on what is and is not appropriate
      • The Library Blogger’s Personal Protocols
      • Sample Corporate Blogging Policy & Blogger Code of Ethics
  • RSS and libraries
    • External – for patrons
      • Library news and events
      • New book titles and book reviews
      • New journal articles and subject news alerts
      • Announcements/updates for classes
      • Marketing tool
  • Example: Database search queries (Academic Search)
    • Save searches as RSS feeds
    • Poor usability
      • Have to sign in to save search as alert
      • No RSS or XML button
      • RSS listed as option under e-mail delivery
      • Generates URL to copy and paste into aggregator, but directions are poor
  • RSS and libraries
    • Internal – for staff
      • Current awareness for staff
      • Collection development – feeds of new titles from publishers
      • Communication/announcements for library staff
  • Library catalogs
    • For patrons
      • Catalog searches
      • New titles
      • Holds, due dates
    • For staff
      • Automatically feed e-journal TOC data or other metadata into library catalogs
  • Example: Library catalogs
    • Allegany County (Library.Solution)
      • Users perform search, click RSS button, and paste URL into aggregator (such as Bloglines)
  • Example: Library catalogs
  • How do you create feeds?
    • Software tools: FeedForAll
    • Hand code it (RSS 2.0)
    • Web sites: Feedyes, Ponyfish
    • Use blogging software
      • WordPress, Blogger, Typepad, Movable Type
  • Further reading
    • Sauers, Michael P. Blogging and RSS: a librarian’s guide , Information Today, 2006.
  • Should We Podcast?
    • Do you have the time?
    • Interested staff?
    • Software, hardware?
    • Legal and interesting content?
    • Ideas, passion & committment?
    If so then go for it!
  • Podcasting & Libraries Ideas
    • News & events
    • Announcements
    • Self-guided tours
    • Library instruction & support
    • Interviews and library speakers
    • Book & media reviews or news
    • Stories & other “audio books”
    • Whatever your staff & patrons create
  • Libraries with Podcasts
    • Thomas Ford Memorial Library
      • “ Click-a-Story” – stories for kids read by staff
      • http://www. fordlibrary . org/rss/
    • Arizona State University
      • Library Channel – news about what is going on in the ASU libraries
      • http://www. asu . edu/lib/podcasts/
    • J. J. Hill Reference Library
      • “ offers educational programs and business learning seminars with featured speakers on a variety of topics”
      • http://www. jjhill . org/Events/podcasts . cfm
    • Western Kentucky University Libraries
      • Offer audio library tours via a podcast PLUS lectures
      • http://www. wku . edu/Library/podcast/index .html
    (thanks to Max Anderson of Solinet for these examples)
  • Podcasts for the People
    • Johns Hopkins Health & Medicine
    • National Public Radio
    • National Geographic
    • Civil War Traveller Podcasts
  • So…
    • Will it make us hip and happening?
  • Well…
    • I find this kind of hip and happening!
    (but I also like my Podcasts…)
  • Questions?
    • Bonnie Shucha, Head of Reference
    • University of Wisconsin Law Library
    • [email_address] , IM: BonnieAtUWLaw
    • Amy Gannaway
    • Wisconsin Department of Transportation
    • amy . [email_address] .state. wi .us
    • Allan R Barclay, Information Architecture Coordinator
    • University of Wisconsin-Madison Ebling Library for the Health Sciences
    • [email_address] . wisc . edu