I’m settling nicely into Atlanta, and enjoying all the exciting work in my new job as the Web Services Librarian at GSU. We’re hard at work on a new website, so keep your eyes open for the groovy new features we’ll be rolling out in the next few weeks.
In the mean time, here are some speaking gigs I’ve got lined up for this month:
- Wednesday Webinars – The Social Library (Wednesday, July 21, 2010, 10:00am). This is a free webinar series offered by the Georgia Public Library Service, so feel free to sign up. I’ll be talking about some of the latest trends in social computing and how you can leverage those trends in libraries.
- Atlanta Emerging Librarians – Say What You Mean: Professional Communication Skills for Librarians (Saturday, July 24th, 2010, 3:00-5:00pm, Dunwoody Library, Dunwoody, GA). I’ll be doing an overview of interpersonal communication skills as they apply to librarians, including: basic communication skills, direct vs. indirect communication, conflict management, and professional relationship maintenance.
I’m really looking forward to doing both presentations, and to taking part in the post-talk dialogue with librarians (always my favorite part!). So sign up, show up, and let’s have a conversation!
I’m very pleased to announce that I’ll be joining Georgia State University as the new Web Services Librarian starting June 1st! This is a very exciting opportunity, and I’ll be joining a great team.
I’ll still be sad to leave Valdosta, though, since this is my home town & Odum Library is where I “grew up” as a librarian (if I can even call myself a grownup!).
The future looks both adventurous and challenging for libraries, and I’m eagerly anticipating the next chapter in our story together! Wish me luck!!!
This week I had a user come to me frustrated because she was unable to find articles in a ProQuest database. I noted that the journal issue she browsed only had a single article listed. I knew this was an error, so I reported it. This is what I heard back:
Unfortunately, it looks like ProQuest will not be changing this indexing error
because no content is actually missing. Here is the response from the ProQuest
This is a known issue. The method used to load some of the older content resulted in
some records loading to duplicate page collections. The manufacturing system does
not allow for documents to be moved from one collection to another. It would involve
a manual process of deleting and re-creating the records. Since no content is
missing no resources were ever allocated to clean up these issues.
So basically, ProQuest is telling me that even though the data is completely useless since it is unfindable, that this isn’t a problem, because at least it’s there.
This makes me angry on a variety of levels. Let’s go down the list, shall we?
- My user’s problem with locating content that they are paying for with their tuition isn’t important in the eyes of ProQuest. After all, they’ve already got their money, so what should they care?
- Information quality control is of little to no concern for ProQuest. They need to allocate their resources elsewhere.
- I should never bother reporting problems to ProQuest ever again, since they obviously don’t care about end users being able to use their products.
I’m sure I’ll hear from ProQuest on this one issue (hello power of social media!), and I’m sure they’ll resolve it in short order. But that still won’t solve the larger problem of quality control or addressing errors in the system.
Working with technology, there have been plenty of times where I’ve had to manually update records and web pages. It’s dull, tedious work, yes. But I do it — as do all of us who work in information control. We do it because we know that somewhere down the line, someone is going to need this stuff. And the moment that an error is brought to our attention, we work on fixing it, because as information professionals we provide the best information resources possible. Because that’s our job.
For those of you attending CIL2010, I’ll be at the Neal-Shumann booth on Monday, 4/12 from 2:30-3:15pm. Drop by and say hello!
The rest of my trip will be spent visiting with my sister, to see her all beautifully preggers before she delivers my new niece in late May!
I’m very pleased to announce the publication of my book A Social Networking Primer for Librarians, the seventh book in The Tech Set, a series produced by Neal-Shuman Publishers and edited by the amazing Ellyssa Kroski.
I’m very proud to be a part of this series, as it aims to provide librarians with a ground-up approach to a variety of topics. It brings together big names in the library technology field (which I’m positively blushing to see my name included alongside!), and provides material both for beginning library workers all the way through experienced practitioners:
So order a copy for your library (or yourself!), listen to the companion podcasts and add your notes to the companion wiki! I’m looking forward to interacting with readers on the wiki and right here on my blog! So go check it out!