Monday, June 6, 2011

Method 9

Instant messaging and chat. 
I like it.  I feel connected and in touch.  Problem:  I'm in a customer service oriented industry.  I can't ignore my walk-in patrons/customers to "online chat" with a friend/coworker/fellow librarian/library.  I was fortunate in that I have a few young (really young) friends who were willing to help me along without making me feel ancient and way out of touch.

I'm sure there is a use for these functions in libraries.  I would imagine that large library systems could and should use it extensively.  It's so much faster than e-mail.  You get instant response.  If a patron was making an inquiry, you could IM another branch or speciality library if necessary and get a quick response.

We haven't publicized use of instant message or chat from our computer lab.  I think the icon is only available when the computers are in "Administrator" mode. Most of our patrons use our computer lab for employment search, genealogy research, distance learning etc...  Quite a few of our regular computer lab patrons (adult and youth) simply watch TV shows, anime or play games.   

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