Cataloging: Week 8

This past week I got to experience an interesting example of professional development with emerging technology. It turns out that OLAC (Online Audiovisual Catalogers) and MOUG (Music OCLC Users Group) do monthly TwitterChats on various topics of interest to the two groups. This month, they were discussing different ILS interfaces, and the pluses and minuses of each. I was able to take part in the conversation, and watch other experts in the field explore this topic. It was very interesting to see Twitter as the preferred space for this sort of engagement, and it definitely had pluses and minuses of it’s own. For one, it was a space where people already share their thoughts, and where these two organizations were already present. It is a method that is open-source and accessible to anyone with a computer or a phone. The mobile version is extremely friendly and easy to use. On the other hand, Twitter wasn’t really built to handle group chats like this, so some adjustments had to be made to make it work. Everyone who commented had to use a common hashtag, and if you forgot, your comment wasn’t included the right way.All in all, I think that it is good for these groups to be trying out new technologies and ways to access each other from a distance. I think that with more planning and organization in future implementations, this will be a very easy and neat way to have virtual talks.

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