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The Tower and the Open Web: The Role of Reference

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Charleston Conference
Thursday Afternoon Plenary
November 4, 2010, 4:30 PM

Panel presentation by: John Dove, President, Credo Reference; Casper Grathwohl, Vice President and Online and Reference Publisher, Oxford University Press; Phoebe Ayers, Wikimedia Foundation and University of California at Davis; Jason B. Phillips, Librarian for Sociology, Psychology, Gender and Sexuality Studies and American Studies, New York University; Michael Sweet, CEO, Credo Reference

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The Tower and the Open Web: The Role of Reference

  1. 1. Session Title Here The Tower and the Open Web: The Role of Reference
  2. 2. John Dove President Credo Reference dove@credoreference.com
  3. 3. How can publishers and aggregators collaborate with open web players to the benefit of libraries and their users? The Tower and the Open Web: The Role of Reference
  4. 4. How can publishers and aggregators collaborate with open web players to the benefit of libraries and their users? The Tower and the Open Web: The Role of Reference
  5. 5. The Panel: Casper Grathwohl, Oxford University Press Phoebe Ayers, Wikimedia Foundation Jason Phillips, New York University Library Mike Sweet, Credo Reference The Tower and the Open Web: The Role of Reference
  6. 6. What is Reference?
  7. 7. Reference as intermediary Body of Knowledge Reference: Intermediary
  8. 8. Other Library Resources The student’s world in my day
  9. 9. Is reference dead? More specifically, is “institutionally sponsored reference” dead?
  10. 10. The pessimist’s scorecard  Reference rooms/reference desks  Reference interviews  Reference works in print  Google’s vision
  11. 11. Google’s “no intermediary” Body of Knowledge
  12. 12. The user has moved
  13. 13. The student’s world today Google, Yahoo, Wikipedia, other Online Web Resources Library Visible Web >89% of Information Seeking Activity * Library Sites and Databases <4% of Information Seeking Activity * “Perceptions of Libraries and Information Resources", OCLC, 2005, question 520, p. 1-17 (PDF, 1.5mb)
  14. 14.  User need is higher than ever  Needed content already exists  The user has simply moved  Technology exists to move with them The optimist’s scorecard
  15. 15. Outlook for reference is better than ever If and only if: 1. Open web players pay attention to libraries 2. We meet users at their point of need 3. Content is provided in context 4. Librarians and vendors collaborate 5. Each step enhances information literacy
  16. 16. How can publishers and aggregators collaborate with open web players to the benefit of libraries and their users? The Tower and the Open Web: The Role of Reference
  17. 17. Casper Grathwohl Vice President and Online and Reference Publisher Oxford University Press casper.grathwohl@oup.com
  18. 18. How do students use Wikipedia for course-related research? How today’s college students use Wikipedia for course–related research by Alison J. Head and Michael B. Eisenberg. First Monday, Volume 15, Number 3 - 1 March 2010
  19. 19. OUP Wikipedia-related discovery projects Oxford Islamic Studies Online author linking program •82% increase in traffic from Wikipedia in 3 months
  20. 20. Academic music community Wikipedia project Subject: Wikipedia From: "Charles E. Hamm" <Charles.E.Hamm@DARTMOUTH.EDU> Reply-To: American Musicological Society <AMS- L@LISTSERV.INDIANA.EDU> Date: Fri, 15 Sep 2006 Dear Friends: In recent weeks I've been reading, correcting and adding to entries in Wikipedia, and it's become obvious to me that, in general, music fares poorly in this ambitious project. While there are some excellent entries, particularly on classical genres and composers, it's painfully obvious that many other articles are the work of persons with no background in the disciplined study of music. Also, entries on individual musicologists are shockingly few. No matter what one thinks of Wikipedia, it's here to stay…. Contributing to Wikipedia is not a glamorous job, and since everything is anonymous, it's not an activity that will count towards anyone's tenure or promotion. But it's an important way in which musicologists can have input into an important project that reaches far beyond the bounds of our discipline. Charles Hamm
  21. 21. •[AMS Listserv] Subject: The Wikipedia & a challenge to the discipline (posted on behalf of Scott Warfield); Date: Sat, 16 Sep 2006 I offer the following challenge to all graduate programs in music history, theory, ethnomusicology and related disciplines: whenever possible, make editing and contributing to the Wikipedia a part of your curriculum. Academic music community Wikipedia project
  22. 22. OUP Wikipedia-related discovery projects Music research community Wikipedia project •43% increase in Grove Music Wikipedia traffic in 12 months
  23. 23. Phoebe Ayers Wikimedia Foundation, Trustee University of California at Davis, Librarian phoebe.ayers@gmail.com
  24. 24. Wikimedia Foundation Wikipedia: Username
  25. 25. Wikimedia’s vision Imagine a world in which every single human being can freely share in the sum of all knowledge. That’s our commitment.
  26. 26. 15 million articles… • Free • Volunteer-written • Supported by readers • Neutral, encyclopedic, factual, non-original • No top down editorial control: • Community curated work
  27. 27. Reference librarians and Wikipedia
  28. 28. Adding references
  29. 29. User education
  30. 30. Reference projects
  31. 31. Archive & collection partnerships
  32. 32. Unexpected risks are accounted for, unexpected rewards are discounted. – Liam Wyatt (2010 British Museum “Wikipedian-in-Residence”)
  33. 33. Tapei, Taiwan: Wikimania 2007 Be bold
  34. 34. Jason B. Phillips Librarian for Sociology, Psychology, Gender and Sexuality Studies and American Studies New York University jason.phillips@nyu.edu
  35. 35. An example: Recognizing social and cultural arguments
  36. 36. Leveraging reference effectively in the Social Sciences 1. Promote the idea that reference provides the necessary context for Social & Cultural Approaches 2. Librarians must assert their disciplinary knowledge in many aspects of their work
  37. 37. The planned empirical study • Methodology – 15-20 Interviews with Social Sciences Undergraduates at NYU • Questions to Be Answered: – Familiarity with different types of reference resources – Correlating the ability to identify social and cultural arguments with coursework trajectory, information seeking behavior and/or library contact
  38. 38. Michael Sweet CEO Credo Reference mike@credoreference.com
  39. 39. Confidential 46
  40. 40. “…we should begin to expect more from a reference ebook collection than a faithful reproduction of a printed text…” “eReviews: General Reference Sources and Short Takes” Library Journal, 15 October 2010 Challenge
  41. 41. An online reference service provides: • Discovery: Visibility into your library, its resources & access to librarians’ expertise • Context: Overview, summary and vocabulary on a topic from multiple perspectives • Connection: Seamless integration with relevant resources chosen by your library • Innovation: Smart use of technology
  42. 42. Journals and other library databases OPAC and eBook collections
  43. 43. Have you ever heard of EasyBib?
  44. 44. Why EasyBib is relevant: • Free online bibliography tool • Viral among students - used by over 20 million • Nearly 40,000 Facebook fans • Significant source of traffic to WorldCat • Tremendous opportunity to meet users where they are
  45. 45. 19,000 views and 7,000+ clicks to this Wikipedia alternative in October!
  46. 46. Online Reference Services Library Sponsored Resources and Tools Google, Yahoo, Wikipedia, other Online Web Resources Information landscape 5 years from today?
  47. 47. Join the conversation: Explore best practices, contribute ideas, hear the latest about student research behavior http://corp.credoreference.com/charleston Together, we can make a difference! Call to action
  48. 48. Session Title Here Thank you

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