Wednesday, 28 July 2010

The Lighter Side of Libraries? Exploring Library Facebook Pages, Thing 16

This Blog post is going to be short and snappy. To the point.
I think there IS a space for Facebook and libraries IF you go about it the right way.

Exhibit A.  Library FB Groups and Pages that work:

Why do they work? It's a simple formula: keep it light-hearted, post regularly, interact, make it visual. Put a face(book) to your library, add pictures of staff and events, invite readers for cookies and juice, or to complete a stress-busting jigsaw puzzle during the exams, post interesting/amusing links. Why not? It's a bit of fun and shows that you care and are approachable.

What you shouldn't do is use your FB page for your serious and/or extensive announcements.  There are other and better ways for exchanging this kind of information.

Exhibit B: Library FB Groups and Pages that don't work (yet!):

Interestingly, I know that Cambridge University Library did have a FB page, but I can't find it anymore. My guess is that it was of a similar nature to the links above and they did the right thing and pulled it.  By a similar nature, I mean  too textual, irregular posts and no interaction.

I'm not saying a FB page is for every library. It's not even for life. But, if you can make it work and have the time to make it work, it can become a great space for your readers and staff to interact. However,if it's not working, forget about it. Just beacuse 'everyone is on Facebook' doesn't mean you have to be too.


  1. Many Facebook pages, relating to institutions such as Nortwestern University Library or places seem to be lifted straight from Wikipedia. Can they be taken down?

  2. Interesting point Suzan. No idea to be honest, I will take a look...

  3. The thing about the Central Library Facebook presence is that that's quite good, but their stand-alone webpage is terrible - - (as mentioned over on whispersinthewilderness).

  4. To Girl in the Moon: I totally agree about the Central Library website ; it's awful. I'd like to know a) who designed it and b) who maintains it? Maybe they are placing a little too much attention on their FB page and not enough on their web pages. The latter should always take priority if you ask me.

  5. We should ask them, shouldn't we? I'll try when I'm feeling a bit more tactful!

  6. We should. Let me know when you are feeling tactful!