Library 2.0

Library 2.0

Library 2.0 is a loosely defined model for a modernized form of library service that reflects a transition within the library world in the way that services are delivered to users. The focus is on user-centered change and participation in the creation of content and community. [ Library 2.0 - 9/1/2006 - Library Journal ] ] The concept of Library 2.0 borrows from that of Business 2.0 and Web 2.0 and follows some of the same underlying philosophies. This includes online services such as the use of OPAC systems and an increased flow of information from the user back to the library.

With Library 2.0, library services are constantly updated and reevaluated to best serve library users. Library 2.0 also attempts to harness the library user in the design and implementation of library services by encouraging feedback and participation. Proponents of this concept expect that ultimately the Library 2.0 model for service will replace traditional, one-directional service offerings that have characterized libraries for centuries.


The term "Library 2.0" was coined by Michael Casey on his blog [ LibraryCrunch] as a direct spin-off of the terms Business 2.0 and Web 2.0. Casey suggested that libraries, especially public libraries, are at a crossroads where many of the elements of Web 2.0 have applicable value within the library community, both in technology-driven services and in non-technology based services. In particular, he described the need for libraries to adopt a strategy for constant change while promoting a participatory role for library users.

Library 2.0 made its conference debut at Internet Librarian 2005 in October, 2005, when Michael Stephens of Saint Joseph County Public Library addressed the idea in relation to the typical library website.

A September, 2006, article in Library Journal, titled “Library 2.0: Service for the next-generation library,” begins by expressing the benefit of Library 2.0 to library administrators and taxpayers as providing “more efficient ways of delivering services to achieve greater returns on financial investments.” The article proceeded to express that the much discussed Library 2.0 is something important for librarians to become involved in as it may radically change our customer service and interaction.

With Library 2.0, library services are frequently evaluated and updated to meet the changing needs of library users. Library 2.0 also calls for libraries to encourage user participation and feedback in the development and maintenance of library services. The active and empowered library user is a significant component of Library 2.0. With information and ideas flowing in both directions – from the library to the user and from the user to the library – library services have the ability to evolve and improve on a constant and rapid basis. The user is participant, co-creator, builder and consultant – whether the product is virtual or physical.

Key principles

* Browser + Web 2.0 Applications + Connectivity = Full-featured OPAC
* Harness the library user in both design and implementation of services
* Library users should be able to craft and modify library provided services
* Harvest and integrate ideas and products from peripheral fields into library service models
* Continue to examine and improve services and be willing to replace them at any time with newer and better services.

Concerns and Considerations

Some of the concerns over Library 2.0 are those related to access to technology, privacy [ [ Library Juice » The Central Problem of Library 2.0: Privacy ] ] and security. In 2006, Steve Lawson, humanities liaison librarian, wrote a blog post entitled “A Library 2.0 skeptic's reading list” that collected links to blogs which discuss these concerns. Steve says “I'm not anti-Library 2.0 . . . I like to think of Library 2.0 as a continuing conversation about the future of libraries, and it makes sense to me to try to round up some voices that challenge Library 2.0 conventional wisdom.” [Steve Lawson, A Library 2.0 skeptic's reading list, ]

The Library 2.0 Online Public Access Catalog

See : OPAC#The Next-Generation Catalog

Library 2.0 is a new way of providing library service through new Internet technologies, with emphasis on “user-centered” change and interaction. Like Web 2.0, a full-featured Library 2.0 OPAC gets better the more users are involved in the process of interacting with the catalog and sharing content.

Librarians have been working to retool library catalogs in order to make them more useful for patrons to find, organize, and interact with information in a way that has infinite potential for user customization. These new types of catalogs are a shift from "isolated information silos" to "interlinked computing platforms." [Wikipedia contributors, "Web 2.0," Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, (accessed April 20, 2008).] In the past the information flow was mostly one way, from library to user. With new web tools information can be released to flow in every direction (library to user, user to library, library to library, and user to user).

Jessamyn West, on her website, authored “What We Want: An OPAC Manifesto,” which broke down the needs of library staff, geeks, and users in their OPAC. These valuable suggestions inform librarians of the flexibility, customizability and plain language approach that is desired by users in their OPAC. Librarians should be aware of these issues so that planning for improvement can begin. [Jessamyn West and friends, What We Want: An OPAC Manifesto,]

The debate surrounding Library 2.0

Library 2.0 has been a source of debate in the blogosphere. Some librarian bloggers have argued that these key principles are not new and have been part of the service philosophies of many library reformers since the 19th century. Others are calling for more concrete examples of how libraries can get to Library 2.0. Walt Crawford, for example, argues that Library 2.0 comprises a combination of tools and attitudes which are excellent ideas and not new to librarianship, a few business- and tool-focused attitudes which will not serve all users and user communities, and incorrectly places libraries as the appropriate source for all users to gather all informationref|crawford.

Proponents of Library 2.0, such as Stephen Abramref|abram, Michael Stephensref|stephens, Paul Millerref|miller and others, have spoken to these criticisms, arguing that while individual pieces of Library 2.0 may not be entirely new, the convergence of these service goals and ideas with many new Web 2.0 technologies has led to a new generation of library service.


* Abram, S., Casey, M., Blyberg, J., & Stephens, M. (2006). [ A SirsiDynix Institute Conversation: The 2.0 Meme - Web 2.0, Library 2.0, Librarian 2.0] , February 2006.

* Blyberg, John. (2005). [ ILS Customer Bill of Rights] ,

* Blyberg, John. (2006). [ 11 reasons why Library 2.0 exists and matters] ,

* Boog, J. (2005). [,1895,1881893,00.asp Library 2.0 Movement Sees Benefits in Collaboration with Patrons, Publish] , November 2005.

* Casey, Michael. (2005). [ Working Towards a Definition of Library 2.0] , LibraryCrunch, 21 October 2005.

* Casey, M. & Stephens, M. (2005). [ Where Do We Begin? A Library 2.0 Conversation with Michael Casey] , ALA TechSource Blog, December 2005.

* Casey, M. & Stephens, M. (2006). [ Better Library Services for More People] , ALA TechSource Blog, January 2006.

* Casey, Michael & Savastinuk, Laura. (2007) [ Library 2.0: A Guide to Participatory Library Service] , Information Today Press, 2007. ISBN 978-1-57387-297-3 ISBN 1-57387-297-0

* Casey, Michael & Savastinuk, Laura. (2006) [ Library 2.0: Service for the Next-generation Library] , Library Journal, September 1, 2006.

* Courtney, Nancy. (2007) [ Library 2.0 and Beyond: Innovative Technologies and Tomorrow's User] , Libraries Unlimited, 2007. ISBN 978-1-59158-537-4

* Crawford, Walt. (2006). [ Library 2.0 and 'Library 2.0'" "Cites and Insights 6, 2."] January 2006.

* Farkas, Meredith G. (2007). [ Social Software in Libraries : Building Collaboration, Communication, and Community Online] . Information Today, 2007. ISBN 978-1-57387-275-1 ISBN 1-57387-275-X

* Harris, Christopher. (2006). [ Library 2.0 Week] (Updated), Infomancy, January 2006.

* Harris, Christopher. (2006) [ School Library 2.0] , School Library Journal, May 1, 2006.

* Levine, Jenny. (2005). [ Hello, Library (1.0) World!] , ALA TechSource Blog, 10 October 2005.

* Maness, J. (2006). [ Library 2.0 Theory: Web 2.0 and Its Implications for Libraries] . Webology, 3 (2), Article 25.

* Miller, P., (2005). [ Web 2.0: Building the New Library] . Ariadne, No.45 October 2005.

* Miller, P., Chad, K. (2005). [ Do libraries matter? - The rise of Library 2.0] , Talis November 2005.

* Miller, P. (2006). [ Library 2.0: The Challenge of Disruptive Innovation] , Talis February 2006.
* Stephens, Michael. (2006). [ Web 2.0 & Libraries: Best Practices for Social Software] , "Library Technology Reports", 42:4.
* Talis Talk ( 31 January 2006). [ Podcast with Thomas Brevik, Michael Casey, Ken Chad, Paul Miller, T. Scott Plutchak, Michael Stephens and Richard Wallis.]

See also

* Learning 2.0
* User-generated content
* Web 2.0

External links

* [ library2.0 tag at - follow the pointers]
* [ Ambient Librarian - a Library 2.0 wiki]
* [ Yarra Plenty Library Melbourne, Australia]
* [ Public Library Charlotte Mecklenberg County, NC, USA]
* [ The 23 Things]
* [ BEYOND LIBRARY 2.0: Building Communities, Connections, & Strategies - Theme of the conference Computers in Libraries 2007]
* [ Library 2.0] , social network on Ning
* [ Online Librarian Community - Library 2.0]
* [ Building a Library 2.0 OPAC] (Wiki)
* [ What We Want: An OPAC Manifesto] by by Jessamyn West and friends
* [ Is your OPAC fun? (a manifesto of sorts)] from the LibraryThing Thingology Blog
* [ Library 2.0 and the Problem of Hate Speech (article)]

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  • Library — Li bra*ry (l[imac] br[asl]*r[y^]), n.; pl. {Libraries} ( r[i^]z). [OE. librairie, F. librairie bookseller s shop, book trade, formerly, a library, fr. libraire bookseller, L. librarius, from liber book; cf. libraria bookseller s shop, librarium… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • library — ► NOUN (pl. libraries) 1) a building or room containing a collection of books and periodicals for use by the public or the members of an institution. 2) a private collection of books. 3) a collection of films, recorded music, etc., organized… …   English terms dictionary

  • library — [lī′brer΄ē, lībrər ē; ] also, though usually regarded as nonstandard, [lī′bər ē] n. pl. libraries [ME librarie < OFr < libraire, copyist < L librarius, n., transcriber of books, adj., of books < liber, a book, orig. inner bark or rind …   English World dictionary

  • Library —   [engl.], Bibliothek …   Universal-Lexikon

  • library — place for books, late 14c., from Anglo Fr. librarie, O.Fr. librairie collection of books (14c.), noun use of adj. librarius concerning books, from L. librarium chest for books, from liber (gen. libri) book, paper, parchment, originally the inner… …   Etymology dictionary

  • library — /laibrari, ingl. ˈlaɪbrərɪ/ s. f. inv. (elab.) libreria …   Sinonimi e Contrari. Terza edizione

  • library — *museum, archives, treasury, gallery …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • library — [n] book repository athenaeum, atheneum, bibliotheca, book collection, book room, information center, media center, reference center, study; concept 435 …   New thesaurus

  • Library — Reading room redirects here. For other uses, see Reading room (disambiguation). For other uses, see Library (disambiguation). Reading room of the library at the University of Graz, in Austria …   Wikipedia

  • library — /luy brer ee, breuh ree, bree/, n., pl. libraries. 1. a place set apart to contain books, periodicals, and other material for reading, viewing, listening, study, or reference, as a room, set of rooms, or building where books may be read or… …   Universalium