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"What if every library in the world ..."

New Year's generally bring out the "what ifs" and "this year we're gonna" - take a look at this one from Deborah Fitchett that I think reaches for the skies:
What if every library in the world brought their anonymised circulation data, their IM reference statistics, their anonymised usability testing and survey results, their project reports, their lesson plans and handouts, and their iPhone applications out from their hard drives and their intranets and made them publically accessible?

I cannot see why it won't work except for two things:
  1. Lack of librarians hearing about it
  2. Librarians not doing it
This post is my effort to help solve #1.

As for #2 then Deborah has a job of answering one question, "What's in it for me?"
The answer given then has to be a list of (relevant) benefits with "why" and not a litany of features.

And so, Deborah has kicked us all of, what about you?


  1. Some of them do! In my previous career incantation I was on the library usability mailing list!

  2. Thanks for the plug, Mike! "What's in it for me/us?" will definitely be the kicker; do you think I can convince everyone of fame and fortune? :-) (I do think that ultimately it will be a budget saver because people won't have to keep reinventing the wheel.)

    And Tim, thanks for the link - I've signed up to take a look at it.

  3. Chances are slim with "fame and fortune" but extremely high on "not inventing the wheel" :-)

    I'd imagine (through my stereotypical view of librarians, sorry) that "knowledge sharing" as "good practice" would also be a trigger point.


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