The Networked Librarian: Libraries as social networks


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Director Lee Rainie describes how libraries can be actors in building and participating in social networks through their use of social media such as Facebook, Twitter, and blogging and through delivering their time-tested — and trusted — services to their patrons. More:

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  • Title: Libraries as social networks Subject: Lee Rainie, Director of the Pew Research Center's Internet & American Life Project, will discuss the latest research findings of the Project about how Americans use the internet and cell phones. He will describe how libraries can be actors in building and participating in social networks through their use of social media such as Facebook, Twitter, and blogging and through delivering their time-tested -- and trusted -- services to their patrons.
  • Rise of broadband at home was transformative – internet becomes a central info and communications hub in the home after the switch from dial-up. People do more stuff online; privilege the internet over other info sources in many cases; report better outcomes from internet use, and, most importantly become content creators. Two thirds of adults and 80% of teens are content creators. This is the big change the internet has introduced to media landscape. Probably take a minute to say this.
  • The info ecology changes thanks to rise of internet/broadband. Volume of information rises 20-30% per year. Never had anything close to this in human history. Velocity of information increases, especially in groups. Personally relevant news speeds up as people customize personal feeds, alerts, listservs, group communications. Vibrance of information/media increases as bandwidth increases and computing power grows so media experiences become more immersive and compelling Valence/relevance of information grows in the era of the “Daily Me” and “Daily Us” and custom feeds. 2 mins
  • Perhaps biggest change in info ecology is the democratization of media – and proliferation of niches. The Long Tail becomes reality for media and brands.
  • This is the way Pew Internet measures content creation….
  • 9% of cell phone users have software applications or “apps” on their phones that help them track or manage their health. Some 15% of those ages 18-29 have such apps.
  • The change wrought by mobile is that people are perpetually connected and pervasively available. It means that media and people are available anywhere with any device on any of three screens. Quick tout of Nielsen 3-Screen research (unless you want to do that) and how this shifts the venues and times of people’s encounters with media. Consumers run the playlist now, not the media companies. This changes people’s sense of place (and placelessness) and present. They can be with any one at any time and this creates the reality of “absent presence”.
  • In the challenging new media ecosystem – as more information comes at them from more sources at ever-greater speeds – people cope with the change by relying more and more on their social networks. There are three important ways they do that. The first is that they rely on their networks to act as their “alert” system – sentries. We hear from more and more people who begin and end their days by checking in with their social networks to see what’s new, what’s worth viewing, what’s most enjoyable in media spaces.
  • The Networked Librarian: Libraries as social networks

    1. 1. Libraries as social networks Lee Rainie, Director, Pew Internet Project 5.6.11 San Francisco library system Email: [email_address] Twitter: @Lrainie
    2. 2. The rise of networked individuals Barry Wellman – University of Toronto (my co-author)
    3. 3. New social operating system (1): Networked Individualism <ul><li>Groups and bureaucracies give way to networks </li></ul><ul><li>Social networks are more influential </li></ul><ul><li>Social networks are differently composed </li></ul><ul><li>Social networks are more vivid and tied to creation of information/media </li></ul>
    4. 4. New social operating system (2): New kinds of communities <ul><li>Explosion of group activity and group niches </li></ul><ul><li>Rise of social posses </li></ul><ul><li>Advent of just-in-time, just-like-me peer-to-peer (support) groups </li></ul><ul><li>Fifth Estate of content contributors </li></ul>
    5. 5. Revolution #1 Internet and Broadband
    6. 7. 70% 66%
    7. 8. Demographic factors correlated w/ broadband adoption 10/5/2010 Trends in Home Broadband Adoption Positive correlation (in order of importance) Negative correlation (in order of importance) Household income of $75,000 or more per year Having high school degree or less College degree Senior citizen (age 65+) Parent with minor child at home Prefers speaking Spanish in our interviews Married or living with partner Disabled Employed full time African-American
    8. 9. Consequences for info ecosystem <ul><li>Volume </li></ul>Velocity Vibrance Valence / Relevance
    9. 10. Consequences for info ecosystem Explosion of creators and niches
    10. 11. Networked creators among internet users <ul><li>62% are social networking site users </li></ul><ul><li>55% share photos </li></ul><ul><li>33% create content tags </li></ul><ul><li>32% contribute rankings and ratings </li></ul><ul><li>30% share personal creations </li></ul><ul><li>26% post comments on sites and blogs </li></ul><ul><li>15% have personal website </li></ul><ul><li>15% are content remixers </li></ul><ul><li>14% are bloggers </li></ul><ul><li>12% use Twitter </li></ul><ul><li>4%-17%??? use location-sharing services </li></ul>
    11. 12. Big challenge for libraries Atoms bits <ul><li>Collections </li></ul><ul><li>are </li></ul><ul><li>disrupted </li></ul>
    12. 13. Big social networking add by libraries 1 – Cover access divides <ul><li>44% of those living below the poverty line used library connections </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>61% of those ages 14-24 used them for school </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>54% of poor senior citizens used library connections for health/wellness needs </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>63% used library connections to help others </li></ul>Source: Opportunity for All, Univ. of Washingon, Gates Foundation, IMLS
    13. 14. Big social networking add by libraries 2 – Cover participatory divides <ul><li>2/3 of library connection users sought assistance from library staff </li></ul><ul><li>60% of library connectors use them for social purposes </li></ul><ul><li>42% for education purposes </li></ul><ul><li>40% for jobs/career purposes </li></ul><ul><li>37% health and wellness purposes </li></ul><ul><li>33% for community engagement </li></ul>Source: Opportunity for All, Univ. of Washingon, Gates Foundation, IMLS
    14. 15. But there is more libraries can do: Relevance & digital literacy are primary factors for not going online Source: Pew Internet Project, May 2010 tracking survey 10/5/2010 Trends in Home Broadband Adoption
    15. 16. Revolution #2 Wireless Connectivity
    16. 17. Cell phone owners – 85% adults 96 % 90% 85% 58% Urban-84% Suburban-86% Rural-77%
    17. 18. 2/22/2011
    18. 19. Mobile internet connectors – 57% adults 62% 59% 55% Urban-60% Suburban-60% Rural-43%
    19. 20. Demographic factors related to mobile connectivity 10/5/2010 Trends in Home Broadband Adoption Positive correlation Negative correlation College grad Less than high school education $75,000+ household income <$30,000 household income Parent of minor child Rural Republican ??? Spanish dominant in language preference
    20. 21. Cell owners are doing more with their phones than ever before 2/22/2011
    21. 22. Cell phones as social tools <ul><li>% of cell owners </li></ul><ul><li>54% send photo or video </li></ul><ul><li>23% access a social networking site </li></ul><ul><li>20% watch a video </li></ul><ul><li>15% post a photo/video online </li></ul><ul><li>11% have purchased a product </li></ul><ul><li>11% charitable donation by text </li></ul><ul><li>10% status update service such as Twitter </li></ul>2/22/2011
    22. 23. 85% use cell phones 35% have apps 24% use apps All adults May 2010 and Nov 2010 surveys 1 in 4 adults use apps
    23. 24. 55% of adults own laptops – up from 30% in 2006 45% of adults own MP3 players – up from 11% in 2005 50% of adults own DVRs – up from 3% in 2002 42% of adults own game consoles 7% of adults own e-book readers - Kindle 7% of adults own tablet computer – iPad doubled in 6 months
    24. 25. Consequences for info ecosystem Anywhere Any device Presence Place Any time Alone together
    25. 26. Big challenge for libraries People came to us We go to people <ul><li>The library as </li></ul><ul><li>place becomes </li></ul><ul><li>the library </li></ul><ul><li>as placeless </li></ul><ul><li>resource </li></ul>
    26. 27. Big social networking add by libraries Help navigate and “make peace” with info <ul><li>Apps vs. web vs. traditional resource locators </li></ul><ul><li>Access to real-time information </li></ul><ul><li>Context of information – augmented reality </li></ul><ul><li>Sanctuary – quiet space </li></ul>
    27. 28. Revolution #3 Social Networking
    28. 29. The social networking population is more diverse than you might think 2/22/2011 5x 5x 7x 5x
    29. 30. Demographic factors correlated w/ SNS use 10/5/2010 Trends in Home Broadband Adoption Positive correlation Negative correlation Under age 30 Senior citizen (age 65+) Female (overall) Male (frequency) Rural Parent with minor child at home Non-cell user Some college Disability Urban
    30. 31. Online video 2/22/2011 <ul><li>What You Need to Know: </li></ul><ul><li>69% of internet users (half of all US adults) watch videos online – and not just funny cat videos </li></ul><ul><li>14% of internet users have uploaded their own video content (up from 8% in 2007); sharing as likely to occur on social networking sites as specialized video sites </li></ul>
    31. 32. Video creation 2/22/2011 <ul><li>What You Need to Know: </li></ul><ul><li>14% of adult internet users have posted video online </li></ul><ul><li>Up from 8% in 2007 </li></ul><ul><li>Biggest growth among older adults, women </li></ul>
    32. 33. Online social networks + ubiquitous mobility <ul><li>Allows for immediate, spontaneous creation of networks </li></ul><ul><li>Gives people a sense that there are more “friends” in their networks that they can access when they have needs </li></ul>2/22/2011 Social Dashboard Pervasive Awareness
    33. 34. Big shift for libraries Expertise and influence shifts to networks <ul><li>Share the </li></ul><ul><li>stage with </li></ul><ul><li>amateur </li></ul><ul><li>experts </li></ul>
    34. 35. Big social networking add by libraries 1 - Can be embedded in … <ul><li>Attention zones </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Continuous partial attention </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Deep dives </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Info-snacking </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Day dreaming??? </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Media zones </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Social streams </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Immersive </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Creative / participatory </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Study / work </li></ul></ul>
    35. 36. Big social networking by libraries 2 – Can be nodes in social networks <ul><li>As sentries – word of mouth matters more </li></ul><ul><li>As information evaluators – they vouch for/discredit a business’s credibility and authenticity </li></ul><ul><li>As forums for action – everybody’s a broadcaster/publisher </li></ul>
    36. 38. Cosmic social networking add by libraries 1 – Can be teachers of new literacies <ul><li>- screen literacy - graphics and symbols </li></ul><ul><li>- navigation literacy </li></ul><ul><li>- connections and context literacy </li></ul><ul><li>- skepticism </li></ul><ul><li>- value of contemplative time </li></ul><ul><li>- how to create content </li></ul><ul><li>- ethical behavior in new world </li></ul>
    37. 39. Cosmic social networking add by libraries 2 – Can help fill in civic gaps <ul><li>- the big sort among institutions: public, private, non-profit reimagining roles </li></ul><ul><li>- the big sort on news and information landscape </li></ul><ul><li>- the big empowerment and move to networked individuals </li></ul>
    38. 40. Meta issue 1: The future of knowledge <ul><li>How is it created? </li></ul><ul><li>How is it disseminated? </li></ul>
    39. 41. Meta issue 2: The future of reference expertise <ul><li>How to you search for info? </li></ul><ul><li>How to you assess it and aggregate it? </li></ul>
    40. 42. Meta issue 3: The future of public technology <ul><li>What is the future of knowledge “containers” and access points? </li></ul><ul><li>What divides does that create? </li></ul><ul><li>What “lending” and “access” models are possible? </li></ul>
    41. 43. Meta issue 4: The future of learning spaces <ul><li>What fosters collaboration? </li></ul><ul><li>What is the role of solitary focus? (and quiet space?) </li></ul>
    42. 44. Meta issue 5: The future of community anchor institutions <ul><li>Does local matter? </li></ul><ul><li>What does our community need? </li></ul>
    43. 45. Practical question - 1 <ul><li>What’s the franchise vs. commodity? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>What’s the aggregation play? Do what you do best and link to the rest </li></ul></ul>
    44. 46. Practical question – 2 <ul><li>What’s the social networking play ? What alliances can we strike to do distributed versions of our mission? What’s the word-of-mouth, viral play? </li></ul>
    45. 47. Practical question - 3 <ul><li>What’s the mobile play? How do we understand and exploit real-time information with our patrons? </li></ul>
    46. 48. Practical question - 4 <ul><li>What’s the gift economy play? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Another way to say it: What’s the API play? What can we pry loose that OTHERS can exploit? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>What feedback do we want from our stakeholders? </li></ul></ul>
    47. 49. Practical question - 5 <ul><li>What’s the definition of success that is based on outcomes NOT outputs? </li></ul><ul><li>How do we measure it? </li></ul>
    48. 50. Key questions for any organization - 6 <ul><li>What’s the gamer play – immersive, compelling, skills building </li></ul>
    49. 51. Be not afraid