Saturday, November 20, 2010

Meebo me

Like most librarians I know, I am online constantly. There are always multiple tabs open and I am checking, toggling back and forth. Continuing to build our capacity to reach out to students with help, support and resources is our ongoing educational mission.

When I go to check email and see that my account logged out twenty minutes ago and a student tried to reach me from the classroom with a citation question, or a teacher took a shot and emailed asking for a resource (or even sent up a flare for help with a technical problem),  I realize the opportunity was lost. This drives me crazy.

I know our CCHS Learning Commons wiki gets a lot of traffic during the school day, and I have wanted to figure out how to make it more effective as a communication tool.

Browsing through my RSS feed this afternoon a fascinating post from Information Tyrannosaur caught my eye. Check out his post on using Meebo in the library :

Meebo Bar for Libraries | Information Tyrannosaur

This is a really useful description of Meebo:

"Enter the Meebo Bar. It’s a piece of javascript code that’s sits as a layer on top of a website.  This allows it to be on multiple pages so your widget is not just on your “ask a librarian” page or your homepage; it’s everywhere without taking up a bunch or room. In addition, it’s fully customizable so you can include your library’s Facebook page, posts from your Twitter stream, Flickr photos, YouTube videos, and more. Users can get help from a librarian and also connect with them on social media all from a single bar on any of the library’s pages."

I have seen Meebo on university sites and our regional public library system site, but never really thought about integrating it into our web presence. This is going to be a fascinating trial.

Information Tyrannosaur closed his post with a question.

Is anyone currently using this? Would this be something that could be useful at your library?

We are trying it! I'll let you know how it goes. Thanks Information Tyrannosaur!

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Blogger Kathleen Johnson said...

I have been using Meebo for a couple of years but still trying to break through the "shy" factor with students. They are comfortable IM'ing each other, but not necessarily an adult they don't have as a teacher in class everyday.

November 22, 2010 at 4:46 PM  
Blogger Robin Cicchetti said...

Thanks for the feedback, Kathleen. Very appreciated. It will be interesting to see if we can build some traction. I worry about students getting, um, creative in posting questions. I'll leave it at that ;)
Thanks again, Robin

November 22, 2010 at 8:36 PM  

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