Online Communities

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Revision as of 11:18, 11 August 2005 by (Talk) (Questions, Comments, What You'd Like to Know About Online Communities)

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Success Stories

Tips for Developing Online Communities

Thoughts About Online Communities in Libraries

Questions, Comments, What You'd Like to Know About Online Communities

I am curious about the accountability factor regarding online communities. Specifically, is it a better idea to force users to "sign in" to a wiki (or blog) in order to allow them to edit the page? Is it a good idea to require a library card number as a username (or allow them to create a username\password that is connected to a card) to help prevent spamming the site? Or have open sites been successful? -Posted by Mike Beccaria 8-11-05

Great Examples of Libraries Creating Online Communities for Their Patrons


Forums and Listservs

Online Book Clubs


Posts are tagged with one or more categories so that each post can be in more than one blog (for example "teens" and "events" or "kids" and "audio".

On all of these blogs, the AADL has chosen to leave comments open, which has led to some interesting online discussions between the library staff and their patrons. Technological changes, the website's redesign, and library construction plans have inspired many comments -- some positive, some negative, but all useful. One item about the library's system to e-mail due date notices on books ended up with 25 comments while a post about gaming tournaments ended up with over 60 comments! This is a great model that could be used in other libraries. Blogs are a fantastic tool for disseminating information to patrons, but it is also a great tool for soliciting useful feedback from patrons if a library is willing to allow and encourage patron comments. This is a great way to develop an online community and a better relationship with your patrons!


Flickr,, Furl, and other social software

Instant Messaging

  • Check out the wiki section on virtual reference services for relevant articles, success stories, and a list of libraries that use IM.

Great Examples of Online Communities Among Librarians

General Online Communities




  • LISNews is a collaborative weblog dedicated to reporting news and discussing current events in the library world. It is an open community where any librarian can post stories and comment on posts, making it far more of a "conversation" than the average blog.


Blogs and Websites to Watch

Specific Blog Posts, Articles, and Presentations