Lesson 3: Blogs and RSS Feeds

After reading the article, “Why and how to use blogs to promote your library’s services” by Darlene Fitcher from 2003, I realized just how long blogs have been around and what useful tools they can be. Darlene discusses just how easy and productive having a blog in the library can be. How it can promote library events, support the users who want updates on current material, engage the community with new book reviews and book activities, support their community with various value-added services as needed, and build new relationships by promoting the library to new users. I found this a very important topic to learn about as I can see myself (as I am doing for this course) using this method in the workplace. I think it would be very exciting to see a blog progress and see how the community and target population would respond to it and contribute. A blog does not have to just be by one librarian or a couple librarians contributing; however, the patrons can also comment and leave their opinions on whatever topic is brought up. This article is ten years old but even ten years ago libraries saw the importance of using the Web as a medium to reach out and communicate in a different way than before.

The second topic of the week was RSS feeds or “Rich Site Summary”. I learned about this tool and how I can use this very useful technology to subscribe to feeds and information from news sites, weather sites, databases, blogs, etc. Previously to this lesson I had heard of the term RSS but did not really know what it was. After reading about it and experimenting with it this week (and adding an RSS feed to my blog (subscribe to my blog! Hint, hint!)) with Google Reader, I have discovered what a genuinely ingenuous and easy tool that this is! I actually had a lot of fun finding pages with RSS feeds and subscribing to them. I subscribed to RSS feeds for theweathernetwork.com in London, Ontario and in Sudbury, Ontario and I subscribed to RSS feeds for various libraries, webpage’s and blogs. I am very excited to keep using this tool as I find it so useful that I can subscribe to feeds all over the Web and access them all in just one area. I will definitely be recommending this tool to my friends and anyone interested as it is not only useful but a timesaver.

Those are my thoughts on Lesson 3! Sorry for the late post, it has been a busy past week as I have been getting back into the heavy workload of a Master’s student and am (hopefully!) finally getting into a good groove with balancing work and life in London!


Rebekah Harrison

Fitcher, Darlene. (2003). Why and how to use blogs to promote your library’s services. Marketing Library Services, 17(6)


Response to Lesson 2: Intro to social software and libraries

The topic of the evolution from Web 1.0 to Web 2.0 in the article by O’Reilly (2005) really struck me as interesting. He discusses how the web changed after the technology market crash in the 90’s and how the web has become a more dynamic, user-driven medium. Having grown up in that time and with just being introduced to the internet and computers back then, this concept of the change in the web has never come across my mind. A lot of the concepts in the article are some that I am still very unfamiliar with but I got the general idea from this article at just how far the web has come since I first started using it as a young child. A couple of the Web 1.0 examples that he used: Mp3.com, personal websites, and Britannica Online I remember using. However, in this Web 2.0 age, I have used most of the Web 2.0 examples: Wikipedia, BitTorrent, Napster, blogging, and Flickr. This shows to me, that not only has the web been changing but I have been following and utilizing the changes.

Next, reading the article by Maness (2006) where he connected the concept of Web 2.0 to what he called “Library 2.0”, I got a better grasp of this concept. His discussion of how Library 2.0 will change the library system to where the patron has more of a say in the library really made sense. Libraries have always been there to serve the patron and it would just make the patron even more satisfied if their communication with their local library was expanded. I think it’s very exciting to think about the library as a much more interactive and web-based medium where we can assist the patrons in ways that we previously have not. Furthermore, this article really helped explain some topics that I found not quite clear from the O’Reilly article, such as: tagging and RSS feeds. Connecting these two concepts to how libraries would utilize them helped clear up the idea of what these concepts were. 

I am very excited and hopeful that I can take these advancements and use them in my career. Even though I am not very experienced in many of the social media communication mediums that were listed in these articles I look forward to learning and using them. Also, growing up in a digital age, I am much more comfortable using these methods to communicate, almost more so than the traditional mediums of telephone and snail mail.

Since the development of the Library 2.0 is still in its early stages I am very excited to see where Web 2.0 will take libraries.

These are some of my thoughts for the week. I hope in the weeks to come that I will continue to learn much more about social media.




Maness, Jack M. (2006). Library 2.0 theory: Web 2.0 and its implications for libraries. Webology. 3(2). Article 25.

O’Reilly, Tim. (2005). What is Web 2.0: Design patterns and business models for the next generation of software. O’Reilly. January 20, 2013. From http://oreilly.com/pub/a/web2/archive/what-is-web-20.html?page=1. 



Hi everyone!

My name is Rebekah Harrison and I am currently in my second term of the MLIS program at UWO. I do not have a a large amount of experience with working with different types of social software like blogs and the other topics covered in this course so I figured that these would be some very useful areas to become knowledgeable in. Furthermore, I am aware of the importance of learning these methods to communicate in the digital age. 

My ultimate goals in this program as a whole would be to find employment in a medical library setting or a rural/special library setting. These areas interest me as I have some experience in medical libraries and in small town libraries. 

I am very excited to get started in this course!