Reasons why I am signing up again for the International Librarians Network

ILN peer mentor

I have applied again for this round at the International Librarians Network peer mentorship programme.

I have experienced that even though I sometimes don’t get a very engaged peer mentor, I still get much worth from the discussion points and networking opportunities through social networks.

My reasons for applying to become a peer mentor at ILN:

  • Meeting a librarian from across the world whom I would never have met otherwise.
  • Learning about the library profession globally.
  • Having a peer mentor to ask questions about my daily challenges, and not feeling as isolated about our challenges here. The challenges are universal!
  • Learning about different sections in the library from a librarian in the field.
  • With each round I am able to add a new global connection to my networking circle! It’s great to say that I now know a librarian in England, Australia, Bangladesh, Spain and Zimbabwe!

It’s worth signing up each time!

 

Sign up here: Apply for the ILN

More info: How the ILN program works

The application process closes on 15th February for the next round in 2016.

 

Feedback about hosting a Twitter chat – ILN discussion about games and libraries

Library InternetHow I prepared and some of my observations while hosting the Twitter chat through the International Librarians Network Twitter account: @InterLibNet

The Twitter chat was on 2 April, about Libraries and Games.

I prepared by reading up on how to run a successful Twitter chat:

– 4 Steps to running a successful Twitter chat

Twitter chat

7 Steps to launching a successful Twitter chat

Taking games in libraries seriously

– The posts on ILN website as well as emails also added to my reading:

Discussion topic: games and libraries

Games and libraries: Twitter chat on Thursday 2 April

I searched for a social media management platform, and tested out Sprout Social. I was very happy with the results, especially some of the reports that could be generated.

I also scheduled my tweets before the time; a selection of 6 questions marked with Q (every 10 minutes). I also simultaneously could schedule it to post on my own personal Twitter account.

Some thoughts and feedback about the results:

– The InterLibNet Twitter followers was 1584 at 9:30 am, with 3071 tweets from the account. At 12:00 they had 1590 followers (6 more), with 3170 tweets (99 tweets that went out from the account).

– There was mostly retweets and favourites of the discussion that was happening from the @InterLibNet account.

– I would have liked to have more hands-on and personal experience of gaming in libraries. It would have made the discussion more fruitful from the hosting site. I suggest using an expert for a next Twitter chat if own experience and expertise are lacking.

– Two of the pictures posted vertical, which made it look non-professional.

– The use of pictures with the tweets worked really well! (My own thoughts)

– Sprout Social worked perfectly for scheduling.

– I should have addressed more tweets without the outstanding hashtag and added it. I was difficult from the computer since it was just before Twitter introduced the new feature of making it possible to add comments to retweets.

– I should have scheduled more tweets in-between questions. Easier to think of it before the time than during the chat.

– I suggest in scheduling some go-to sources and expert links as well. Luckily some of the participants did that for this Twitter chat.

– It is great to ask some people to help/contribute – two of my ILN peer mentors jumped in and helped quite a bit. They were excellent contributors! Thanks to Fiona Malcolm @tapsister and Paschalia Terzi @digitallitsa.

– The ILN Directors did a great job! Clare McKenzie @ccmcknz, Alyson Dalby @alysondalby and Lisa Miller @L15A (social media coordinator). Thank you very much!

The Storify of the Twitter chat is here:

Discussion topic: Games and libraries

The upcoming Twitter chat on Thursday at 11 am South African Standard Time (UTC + 2:00) will be about gaming and libraries. I will be running it from the ILN Twitter handle. Check out a Time zone converter here and please take part. Please give us a shout-out from your part of the world and tell us what you do with gaming in your library? Maybe it is still something you should try in your library?

International Librarians Network

gamers Gamers by Arne Halvorsen. CC BY-NC 2.0

This week’s discussion topic will look at the connection between libraries and games – this seems to be as varied as the types of libraries themselves. From a traditional focus on board games to the rise of Minecraft in libraries, there is something in this topic for most of us.

I remember as an 8 year old playing games in my school library at lunch time on rainy days and with rising pressure on funding of libraries in many schools, there is plenty of people arguing that games and libraries can help with teaching core literacy and numeracy.

At the community level, many public libraries include video games in their spaces, to help bring in teenagers and young adults, either on a continuous basis or as a one off event to promote the library.  Providing a safe, non commercial space for…

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Library Advocacy Unshushed #LA101x – MOOC starting today

I am looking forward in learning more about library advocacy in this MOOC starting today: Library Advocacy Unshushed

LA101x Timeline

LA101x Timeline

We are more needing to explain our services, and with less resources at our disposal.

I hope I will gather some practical advice during this six weeks course.

The syllabus is available here: http://courses.edx.org/c4x/University_of_TorontoX/LA101x_2/asset/LA101X__2015__Syllabus.docx

Libraries and Social Media: Follow a Library Day #followalibrary

Follow SABC Media Libraries on Twitter

Follow a library day is again upcoming on 1 October.

David Green wrote a guest post for the International Librarians Network:

Libraries and Social Media: Follow a Library Day.

“It’s a marketing, advocacy, networking free-for-all; a drop-in, casual twitter chat that feels like a group hug. Everyone everywhere can participate, and with steering committee members from South Africa, the Netherlands, and Australia, it’s truly an international affair.

How to play:

• Add #followalibrary to your tweets

• Follow @followalibrary for discussion topics and questions

• Watch the stream by searching #followalibrary”

South Africa Country Coordinator: International Librarians Network

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The International Librarians Network is a facilitated peer mentoring programme that starts it’s next round in September.

Country coordinators act as liaison points for each country. If you are in England, for example, and you want to know more about the program, you would speak to the England coordinator. Country coordinators are responsible for recruiting people in their country to the program.
Country coordinators are also expected to contribute content to the website and online discussions.

Karen du Toit has applied and was accepted as the country coordinator for South Africa. She has signed up for her fourth round (including the first test round), because it has proved to be of so much value to her own professional development.

Karen du Toit – South Africa Country Coordinator

Karen is a radio archivist in the SABC Radio Archives at the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC), the national public broadcaster in South Africa. She has been working in archives and libraries at the SABC for nearly 25 years. She loves how technology and social media has changed the library and archives profession, and the fact that librarians and archivists are the change agents in this process.

Karen tweets at @karentoittoit and blogs at Karen’s 23 Mobile Things (personal) and SABC Media Libraries blog (corporate), while keeping the SABC Media Libraries website and social media sites updated.

 

Contact details for the South Africa ILN country coordinator: southafrica.ilnetwork@gmail.com

Twitter: @karentoittoit

Library advocacy & lobbying – discussion topic for ILN #blogjune

I am linking up with the International Librarians Network with their discussion topic about Library advocacy for my third blogging in June (#blogjune) post.

The questions that needs answering:

Is there an library advocacy or lobbying campaign you’ve loved? What made it stand out for you? 

I love the #followalibrary yearly advocacy campaign on the 1 October. It was a bit quiet in 2013. Luckily it seems that the Twitter outreach this year, awakened by the International Librarians discussion topic about library advocacy and lobbying, has already taken up the challenge.

Image

#followalibrary on Twitter

A Facebook page for Followalibrary for this year has been created by Wilma van den Brink @wbk500 from Amsterdam, and she suggests that each upload a library shelfie #libshelfie for this year.

What are some examples of how you have been an advocate for libraries? How did it work out?

Social Media is one of the great new ways of advocating for libraries. The feedback from our own libraries active on social media is that it has given us a voice and has created awareness about our services.

What are 3 ways in which you think you could become a better advocate?

1. Getting more skilled with regards social media and advocacy practices, to use it to upgrade the library’s social media presence.

2. To always have a positive view on my own library services, and to have that elevator speech ready when asked about our jobs and our services.

3. Love what I do! (Even more, which I do!)