New Book on Social Software in Libraries Almost Here!

Meredith Farkas’ new book called Social Software in Libraries will soon be published.
According to the forward by Roy Tennant, posted on her blog, “This nuts-and-bolts guide provides librarians with the information and skills necessary to implement the most popular and effective social software technologies: blogs, RSS, wikis, social networking software, screencasting, photo-sharing, podcasting, instant messaging, gaming, and more.”

I was interested in her definition of “social software”. She says it must meet two of the following three criteria.

1. It allows people to communicate, collaborate, and build community
2. It can be syndicated, shared, reused, or remixed, or it facilitates
3. It lets people learn easily from and capitalize on the behavior or
knowledge of others.

Using these definitions, it is easy to make a strong argument for the role of social software in supporting instructional technology in today’s colleges and universities. It provides a very flexible platform for promoting dialogue between students and faculty, for supporting student research and writing, and for enhancing group interaction. At our campus, we use Blackboard. This system has some nice features, but if it doesn’t incorporate more social networking tools such as blogging, personal pages, and RSS among others, I think it is in danger of being replaced by a suite of freely accessibly open source products.

My 2 cents for the day. 🙂



2 Responses

  1. I’m glad it refers to ‘social software’ instead of the misleading and misused Web 2.0.

  2. Hi Matt,

    I agree. Web 2.0 (and Library 2.0) are kind of catchy, but not as descriptive as “social software”. At our CALC Summit in April, we are going to have a presentation called 2.Overload, which I thought was clever!


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