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Blogging librarians

May 21, 2009

Almost half of the feeds I subscribe to are from blogs written by librarians or library students. There was a time when the majority of the library blogs I subscribed to were written by Americans, or at least librarians working in the US. Since the CILIP2 event this has changed. From that I not only connceted with a lovely bunch of UK based librarians through Twitter but I found a raft of new blogs written by UK librarians to subscribe to.

Sometimes I think people think I’m crazy reading so many library blogs, especially as I do it in my spare time. To me it seems natural not only for professional, but personal development. Us librarians have interesting things to say you know and it’s not all about libraries and books! So why are library blogs so important? I heard a quote a while ago, and now I’ve completely forgotten it and my search skills are letting me down, but the gist of it was that librarians always have to try and stay one step ahead. This is something I strive for but I know that I wouldn’t even be able to attempt it without the help of library blogs.

I was at a presentation this morning given by someone who is working on her dissertation for library school. Her topic is tagging and the future of the OPAC, a subject which has yet to make it to traditional literature so she has relied heavily on library blogs for her research.

For me reading blogs written by librarians is about keeping up with the game. It’s about being connected, learning what other libraries are doing, what other librarians are thinking and discussing. It’s about where our profession is going.

Below are a selection of blogs that I subscribe to. There are some you’ll know, and some you won’t and I hope something of interest to everyone.

Where it all started:

Blogs have taken a while to get going in Oxford’s library service but the range is slowly growing and blogging seems to be the most favoured web 2.0 tool among librarians here. My favourite, or the one I find most useful is the Oxford University e-Resources blog.

Professional development:
Last week my predecessor, Andy Priestner, started his libreaction blog. After just a few posts I can see this is probably going to be the most valuable blog for me and my development as a business librarian. Having people at the top of the game blogging can really provide inspiration and guidance for the next generation.

Ones to watch:
Here are a few blogs that are either new, or that I’ve discovered recently. I usually give new subscriptions a trial period, but these three are here to stay.

Where would we be without library cartoons? Unshelved is a favourite for most but I prefer Shelfcheck.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. May 21, 2009 20:56

    Hi, thanks for the link! I’m pretty new to this blogging lark so I’m not really sure what direction my blog is going to take, it’s pretty unstructured at the mo. I’m having fun with it though! Think it helps me organise my thoughts too.

    Really interesting post by the way, have just added several of the blogs you mention to my reader. I totally agree with you about following library blogs being necessary for “keeping one step ahead”: I pretty much rely on the blogosphere for professional development, networking, all that jazz. I subscribe to various newsletters, email lists, etc., but I think that you don’t get the same immediacy, personal and varying perspectives, and interactivity that you get by following blogs (or Twitter, of course!).

  2. Amelia Luzzi permalink
    May 22, 2009 08:26

    So lovely of you to mention my blog – I can’t tell you how flattered I am. The other blogs look interesting and I’ll be giving them a go.
    Another one you might like to try if you don’t already is Information Wants to Be Free: There may not be anything particularly recent on it as she’s just had a baby, but have a look at previous stuff and see if it’s your sort of thing. I expect she’ll be back once she can get a decent night’s sleep :-).

  3. May 22, 2009 12:28

    Thanks for your comments ladies.

    Information Wants to Be Free could have gone up there in the “where it all started” section. Meredith’s was one of the first library blogs I started reading, she’s always got something profound to say about the future of libraries and most importantly how we train future librarians.

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