Friday January 23, 2009

The work of the Library of Congress 2.0

Even though I work in a small local library I found Wednesday morning’s keynote address by Laura Campbell, Associate Librarian for Strategic Initiatives at the Library of Congress, very interesting and stimulating. Her talk was about the current and past strategic initiatives of the Library of Congress in regard to the Library’s online services and resources.

What interested me most was that such an illustrious and prestigious library was fully engaging with the Web 2.0 technologies and using these technologies to build and preserve collections and develop services for their users. Not unlike we have been doing for the past couple of years here at Mosman.

Here are some key points from her presentation:

  • Library of Congress has 110 million online users
  • In the Twenty First Century it is necessary to push out content and pull in new partners to develop collections and content
  • Library Congress has one million newspapers online
  • Pilot Flickr account in 2007/09 put up 3,000 images and invited users to provide annotations; use YouTube to put up content
  • Upcoming Public Launch in April 2009 of the World Digital Library developed on co-operation with UNESCO containing primary materials form different countries around the world using the six Unesco languages and developed with 25 global partners including National Libraries. Most interestingly, users will be able to add content. This will be a great resource for everyone across the globe to learn about each other and bring about greater understanding through shared knowledge.
  • Libraries should take action early and be catalytic, act collaboratively, engage multiple platforms, share resources, leverage national distributed networks to achieve digital preservation
  • And finally we need to use creative collaborations for future invention and innovation.

Linda H, Manager Library Services, at Information Online #io2009

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