or, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to Fear and Loathing at a Public Library Reference Desk

Web 1.9999999…

   November 30th, 2006

In an effort to cater to the Long Tail patrons who are still unfamiliar with internety things, my library is holding a program tonight called Joys & pitfalls of social networking software.

It is really geared towards parents who are concerned for their childrens' safety on the internet. Our thinking is that if we can educate parents about Web 2.0 tools and how they are used, they will, 1) be more comfortable with their kids using them, and, 2) be able to use them themselves to interact with friends, peers - and their own children - through them.

Our program will be presented in three acts. First, our Director will talk very generally about internet trends, citing statistics, as well as library policy regarding internet use. Next, our YA Librarian will mention what teens do on the internet (myspace, IM, etc), and provide tips on how they can do it safely. Finally, I'll bring up the rear by going more in-depth with popular Web 2.0 websites. So far, only the list of websites I'm going to address is online, but I hope to have the entire thing available soon.

internet safety, library, parents, programs, social networking, social software, technology, teens, web 2.0

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One Response to “Web 1.9999999…”

  1. herzogbr Says:

    Here’s an update on how the program went:

    It was held on a Thursday evening at 7pm, and we were really still pulling things together right up until about 5pm. Being that “social networking” is such a broad topic, we were having trouble finding focus.

    Eventually, it worked out that the first two-thirds of the program was devoted to the evolution of social networking and how to be safe while doing it, and the last third was spent showing examples of social networking websites.

    Attendance was very low – three people. But they asked many questions, as they had kids going off to college next year, so it was worth it. Plus, we’re going to re-tool the whole thing, cut it down to a half an hour, and present it to the Chelmsford Rotary club in January.

    Also, I have posted the workshop materials and handouts.