Using social media to create a participatory library service : an Australian study

Smeaton, Kathleen & Davis, Kate (2014) Using social media to create a participatory library service : an Australian study. Library and Information Research, 38(117), pp. 54-76.

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Abstract

Public libraries are increasingly using social media in an attempt to meet users in their own spaces. Social media can be useful when used to create a participatory library service – to engage with users. However, there has been little empirical investigation into the success of social media use by public libraries. This article reports on the findings of a research project that explored the use of social media by Australian public libraries.

Two organisations participated in case studies that involved interviews, document analysis, and social media observation. To contextualise the use of social media in the case study organisations, a sub study was undertaking involving observation of an additional 24 public libraries across Australia. This article focuses on the findings from the observation sub study. It presents and applies a methodology for classifying social media content to determine whether the sample libraries’ social media use is indicative of a participatory approach to service delivery.

This article explores how a range of social media platforms are used by the sample libraries and considers what ‘best practice’ in participatory library service looks like. The two case study organisations’ use of social media is highlighted as exemplary practice.

Impact and interest:

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ID Code: 72671
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: Library, Social media, Participatory library
ISSN: 1756-1086
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > INFORMATION AND COMPUTING SCIENCES (080000) > LIBRARY AND INFORMATION STUDIES (080700)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > INFORMATION AND COMPUTING SCIENCES (080000) > LIBRARY AND INFORMATION STUDIES (080700) > Librarianship (080706)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > INFORMATION AND COMPUTING SCIENCES (080000) > LIBRARY AND INFORMATION STUDIES (080700) > Library and Information Studies not elsewhere classified (080799)
Divisions: Current > Schools > School of Information Systems
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Science & Engineering Faculty
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2014 Kathleen Smeaton & Kate Davis
Copyright Statement:

Library and Information Research is an open access journal. A freely available copy of this paper may be downloaded from the journal’s website: http://www.lirgjournal.org.uk.

Copyright and associated moral rights in works published in Library and Information Research are retained by the author(s) but this paper may be used freely, with proper attribution, in educational and other non-commercial settings.

Deposited On: 09 Jun 2014 22:53
Last Modified: 11 Jun 2014 12:15

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