Get Social Media Savvy This Summer – Part 4: Blogs
Published: July 30, 2018 by Priscilla Ameneyro
Blogs are the original social media. Even before MySpace, which started as a blog style site, there was LiveJournal and Open Diary. We’re talking circa 1999 before y2k and broadband internet. In that sense, blogs have withstood the test of time. They can be very personal like diaries, but they can also be informational like academic journals (although never as formal or peer-reviewed). Some blogs include pictures, links and videos and others are just plain text. Most blogs allow comments (just like social media) but make sure you read the site rules before engaging in public discourse. The last thing I’d like to mention before diving into my lists of LIS blogs is that most bloggers make their contact information available should you wish to reach out to them.
This is the last post in a four-part series exploring how iSchool students can utilize social media including Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. Summer break is a great time to discover new content. If you don’t already use an RSS feed, here’s everything you need to know to get started. So grab an iced coffee and find somewhere comfy to sit while you browse my blog suggestions.
Most active social media users can be found across multiple platforms. Many of the bloggers below also have complementary accounts on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc. It’s up to you if you want to follow them on social media or subscribe to their blog feed. You’ll find their social media accounts are primarily a means to promote the latest blog post, so why not skip straight to the source?
- http://librarian.net/ – Jessamyn West describes herself as a “sometimes librarian, sometimes writer, sometimes blogger, and sometimes technology instructor/consultant.” She claims that librarian.net is the first single-editor library-oriented weblog.
- http://freerangelibrarian.com/ – written by K.G. Schneider, Dean of the Library at Sonoma State University.
- http://www.kraftylibrarian.com/ – this is a great blog to check out if you’re interested in medical librarianship.
- http://www.noshelfrequired.com/ – a good site for all things ebooks.
- https://futura.edublogs.org/ – Carolyn Foote is a high school librarian interested in technology.
- http://letterstoayounglibrarian.blogspot.com/ – specifically aimed at graduate students, get advice from Jessica Olin, Director of Library Services at a community college in Western New York.
- http://www.abbythelibrarian.com/ – a blog about being a children’s librarian.
- https://mrlibrarydude.wordpress.com/ – written by Joe Hardenbrook, Director of Library Services at Caroll University, who blogs about libraries, technology and teaching.
- http://archivesblogs.com/ – a great syndicate site for archivists that pulls in content about archives from across the web.
- http://www.trevorowens.org/ – this blog focuses on born digital content and preservation.
- http://stephenslighthouse.com/ – a blog on library strategies for direction, marketing, technology and user alignment.
Many professional associations and other LIS groups maintain blogs, such as the American Library Association’s Library of the Future blog. Check out the website of any professional organizations you belong to or are interested in to see if they have a blog. You can also check out this International Librarians Network post that lists many of the main institutions’ blogs.
Our very own School of Information runs several blogs that all students should know about:
- Archives and Records Administration Blog
- Career Blog
- Center for Information Research and Innovation (CIRI) Blog
- Curriculum Blog
- iStudent Blog (this blog!)
- Virtual Center for Archives and Records Administration (VCARA) Blog
If that’s not enough, former Career Blog writer Kate Spaulding has ten blogs she recommends for MLIS students and MARA students respectively. Asking someone in the field what blogs they recommend is a great conversation starter. I would caution you to be selective about which blogs you subscribe to as an overloaded inbox is only going to give you anxiety. If you have too much content to wade through, it defeats the purpose of subscribing in the first place. Blogs are an excellent way to learn what other people are doing in your field, keep up with new developments and read opinions about timely issues.