10% Anarchy and some other commentary

A few words on wordpress before I continue: The blog stats feature is incredibly addictive: it’s fascinating to see what people type in search engines to get here! I also just realized that I was not using the blog surfer feature in a way that anyone would call “well.” Color me embarrassed.

I was going to use this blog to mention some politics type things that have been irking me but I’ve changed my mind because the idea of creating conflict is too daunting. (Incidentally, the only reason I am posting this now is in an attempt to further avoid my scary feminist theory readings.)

Moving on, the nypl is launching a new blog project for its employees. This means that library employees can blog at work on an nypl-approved website (here on wordpress) without getting in trouble for blogging at work (as a friend did recently). There are a couple of catches to this supposedly forward-thinking project. The first, and most obvious, is that the endeavor seems to still be in a “beta” stage as it is inaccessible from computers outside of the library network (unless you have the mysterious user name and password). As a result my blog surfer page on here goes nuts every time I view it because one of the blogs I’m subscribed to is linked to that site as well as just being a regular wordpress blog–or something like that. The second problem is that the project seems to be further supporting the de facto division between staff members since the project was mentioned at a meeting for nypl librarians (I think, we’re talking 95% positive) and I do not know any other clerks who know about the project. What this fact means, to me, is that the library is not entertaining the thought that clerks would have anything to say in a blog to further improve the library’s “image.” I know clerks don’t have time at desks, but they could still, you know, read. Don’t get me started on whether or not pages know about it.

Anyway, given the lack of accessibility and the strong certainty that I am not the desired blogger demographic, this blog will be staying right here: unofficially talking about the library and as anonymous as ever (but not really because a lot of readers heard about this blog from me). The other reason for this is because I’ve concluded that at any given time I am 10% anarchist. When I feel contrary and need to question authority/play devil’s advocate in discussions this percentage can increase. But it prevents me from joining any site where my content is going to be monitored all the time as much as it prevents me from keeping my mouth shut about things that irritate me.

That’s about it for news. Expect more reviews soon but not, perhaps, as frequently as in August because school has started and there are a lot of things to do. (Speaking of reviews, I’ve been reading a lot lately so I’ve been reviewing a lot here and on amazon. I’ve also been spending a lot of time plugging books to people at work. Several librarians are impressed with the range of my interest and the recommendations I can offer, which is amusing since I’ve been recommending books I read in high school and I’ve been an avid reader since my age was a single digit.)

One thought on “10% Anarchy and some other commentary

  1. Hiya – as one of the people responsible for various blog-related initiatives at NYPL, let me clarify. There are a couple of things going on, none of which we’ve done a good job of explaining to the broader staff:

    1. Since July or so, we’ve had an installation of WordPress-MU up at blogs.nypl.org; initially this was just a test to evaluate the usefulness of multiuser WordPress as a blogging platform, but we decided to open it up to the general staff to see what people came up with. This is what I think you’re talking about as a closed beta – the blogs are only accessible from within the NYPL firewall, or by authenticating with your iNotes username/password (same as if you wanted to access LAIR). However, there’s *emphatically* no distinction made between librarians and other staff (I’m not sure which meeting you’re talking about, but I’ve never made a distinction between kinds of staff in any of my presentations on the topic); to set up a blog there, just go to blogs.nypl.org and follow the instructions…if you’ve got an iNotes login, you can set up a blog. In fact, pass the word to other clerks/pages – it’s probably time to start formally announcing this, now that you mention it.

    2. The current plan is to keep the blogs.nypl.org blogs purely internal, because most of the people are blogging about librarianship, and we wanted to create a space for “inside baseball” discussion that could be relatively unconcerned about public appearances. I’m *also* working on a pilot to get library staff (note: *staff*, not just librarians) blogging about areas of their expertise in more formally public-facing ways…you should be able to track more on that at http://labs.nypl.org in the next few weeks…

    One more thing – if you’re interested in talking in more depth, drop me an e-mail and we’ll chat. I’m always eager to hear more perspectives on this stuff…


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