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Library 2.0 Tools and the Salt Lake City Public Library May 18, 2009

Posted by swegene1 in Final Project, Library 2.0, Salt Lake City Library.
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The difficulty in reviewing Library 2.0 technologies on the Salt Lake City Public Library’s webpage is that as far as I can tell there are no tools anywhere on the site. There may be some hiding somewhere on the site or on the Internet, but my inability to find them makes me think that a user of their website would be equally unable to discover them. What I did find was that the website is very static, the only aspects that invite user participation are the circulation elements where users can renew and reserve books and search the catalog. The majority of the website is made up of links to other information sources or bits of information. Rather then having a calender where users can make various choices to narrow down events in different ways, the Salt Lake City Public Library has different event lists, already divided by various factors, such as location, age group, and month. This website illustrates an important distinction between library websites that have and have not embraced library 2.0.

 One of the key characteristics of Library 2.0 is the ability for users to take an active role in shaping their own library experience, by being able to interact with the library in various ways through their website and through other tools. Users can not just find information that meets their needs, but find ways to have that information continuously updated and sent in a convenient way. Even the less innovative means of e-mail booklist newsletters allows this sort of interaction and specialization. These tools empower users to create the library experience they need, beyond just finding the books they need.

Because the Salt Lake City Public Library has no obvious Library 2.0 tools, I will not be asking the usual questions and reviewing their efficacy. It is interesting to note that while there are no Library 2.0 discussed on their website, they do offer classes to train patrons in some of these tools, such as a class on blogs and how to create them.

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