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!

Best,

Rebekah Harrison

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

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