We're planning a feature story and need your help. What's it about? The secrets of the top social networkers—we're not seeking rock stars per se, but rather rock star ideas (Mack Collier made this point in a recent blog post). However, we do want to focus on the people themselves—those who do something really well or have an approach that's distinctive and unique. We'll make a final selection and ask these folks for a first-person account. While this won't be so much about the tools themselves, it'd be nice to have a broad representation. To name just a few:

Blip.TV
Delicious
Facebook
Flickr
Glogster
GoodReads
Google Apps
LibraryThing
Meebo
Ning
PBWiki
Second Life
SlideShare
Twitter
YouTube
VoiceThread
Wikipedia
Mobile apps
Screencasting
Other community sites

Casting as wide a net as I can here—since we can learn a great deal, I think, from those outside our immediate communities—I'm considering not just school librarians, but public library people, tech specialists, K-12 educators, administrators, vendors, and nonprofits, including library and education organizations, authors, publishers, book folk, academic libraries...
So if you have any ideas or know of a great, creative user, let me know.

Thanks very much. Looking forward to hearing from you.

Kathy Ishizuka
Technology Editor
School Library Journal

@kishizuka
@sljournal
SLJ on Facebook
 
 
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I'm often surprised and delighted by what I find on Twitter. And today was no exception when I saw that Chris Brogan posted to his blog a reflection on, of all things, libraries and more pointedly, how they are evolving.

Brogan, a social media expert who is genuinely a social media expert, is coauthor with Julien Smith of the best-selling book Trust Agents.
Here's what he had to say:

"I dropped off three copies of Trust Agents to my local library today, and realized a few changes since I’d last gone in (a few months or so). They’d added free wifi. They’d taken most of the new release fiction and nonfiction and stuffed it in an off-center room to make room for their ever expanding collection of feature length DVDs.

That’s right: my library has become Blockbuster.

But no, not really, and let’s not malign this, because my library is adapting to what its patrons are demanding, and they evidently want newly released movies about the mafia and aliens and anything starring Nicholas Cage or Jim Carrey. And this gets us thinking about what a library’s mission REALLY is today..."


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Do read the rest of his post.
But the upshot is that he's welcoming a dialog here:
 
What do libraries really stand for today? Who do they serve? How should they evolve? What are your thoughts?

Brogan is addressing public libraries, but who's to say the conversation couldn't itself evolve or relate to other library services, as in K-12, let's say. Or maybe social media and libraries? Ebooks and what's ahead for readers?  

At the Summit, we talked about the need to engage the greater audience and getting out the message about what you do. Now seems like a good opportunity.

- Kathy Ishizuka (@kishizuka)


Photo of Chris Brogan by CC Chapman



 
 
In their own words:
For more video impressions, notes from the sessions, and more, visit the Summit Ning.
 
 
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After trading several emails - she's got some very exciting ideas about school libraries - I met Lisa Layera Brunkan in the hall (where some of the best stuff happens, no?). Much has happened since the September 2008 cover story, and she'll catch us up during her keynote on Saturday at 8 - 9:30 am.

Before her presentation, Lisa would like us to consider:

Cultivating Indispensability: Perspectives from beyond the library community.

She's also on the hunt "for stories that highlight librarians and programs from all over the country! Help us share best-practices and help build the case that not only do libraries and librarians matter, they are fundamental to flourishing in the 21st century."
  • Can you quantify this year's cuts to library programs in your community - are they up? down? stable?
  • Do you feel that your principal, superintendent, and state leader’s ‘get’ what you do and support you in your work? If so, please share how you’re getting the word out and why you think they’re listening.
  • Are you a peer coach for technology?
Please respond on the Ning.

Photograph by Rick Dahms
(From left): Susan McBurney, Denette Hill,and Lisa Layera Brunkan

 -- Kathy Ishizuka (@kishizuka)

 
 
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Winding my way down to DC on the Acela.

En route, I've posted a link to our latest issue, October. In the feature well:

Joyce Valenza and Doug Johnson on "What Keeps Us Up at Night," a discussion started at the last SLJ Summit.
Judith C. Koss guides us through tricky territory: copying DVDs.
Likewise, Ellyssa Kroski considers social media policies for organizations, including libraries.
And rounding up the "scary" theme, ghost stories.

Ahhh. Train travel so kicks air travel's butt.