Friday, October 2, 2009

Number 20: Social Networking

This Thing is a bit redundant for me. I created my Myspace account back in 2004 and I started my Facebook account in 2005. I rarely log in to my Myspace account anymore, as most of my friends have stopped using it in favor of Facebook. I am on Facebook nearly 24/7. I'm probably a Facebook addict. (The first step to fixing a problem is admitting you have one, haha!) Facebook is my primary mode of interaction with most of my friends, especially the ones I do not talk to/see on a regular basis. It has been a very helpful way of keeping up with my friends who are scattered all over the country and the globe. On the other side of that coin, though, is the fact that because of Facebook, I already know what most of my friends from high school are up to these days.... So the fun of my 10 year reunion next year has been a little deflated.

I am an advocate of libraries having a presence on these social networks, especially presences that are controlled by the libraries themselves. In this day and age, if your "brand" isn't out there setting the image for itself on the internet, your users (who will include both fans and critics) will be out there setting your image for you. The library system I work for is very reluctant to have an official presence on Facebook. This really rubs me the wrong way. We have a digital librarian. Why can't it be part of her job to create and maintain a Facebook account for us? Other library systems in the state have pages. This whole insistence that "social networking = child pornographers = bad" is just outdated and silly. You are probably much more likely to run into a real child pornograper actually IN the library rather than on the internet. And if he wants information about kiddie events, it's just as easy for him to get that information from the newspaper or flyers than it is on the internet.

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