February 13, 2012

Interesting E-mail...

Yesterday I got an e-mail from a writer from the Dutch journal Informatie Professional: Platform Voor Informatirwerkers about Instagram and why libraries don't use it. I thought it was super interesting that he decided to e-mail me and when I told Justin about it he urged me to respond. Here is the initial e-mail that I received...
Dear Madam,

I just visited your website and saw you sitting on Instagram. For the Dutch journal InformationProfessional ( we are working on an short article about Instagram. What noticed is that are hardly any libraries Instagram can be found. Only the Shatford Library in America and the Entresse Library in Finland. Have we overlooked something? And is there can a reason why libraries do hardly anything with Instagram?

I hope as soon as possible to hear from you.

Thanks in advance.

Here is my response to his question...
Dear Ronald,

There are two reasons that I believe that Instagram is being under utilized by libraries. One being that there seems to be a mixed generation of librarians in most libraries and I have found in my own experiences that the "older" librarians who tend to dominate the field are resistant and shy away from using new and unfamiliar technologies. With that being said, I do believe that there are "older" librarians that if given the proper training on these unfamiliar technologies would try to incorporate them into their libraries. I think there is just a generation gap that hasn't yet been bridged.

And two being that I don't think most people familiar with Instagram have found a proper application for it within their libraries. In addition to that there tends to be a bunch of hoops one must jump through in order to use photos taken within the library especially if the photos are featuring patrons. At my library we are required to have individuals sign release forms in order to use their photos, so I can see how this would become a burden if one was to use Instagram to post to a social media site or what have you.

In terms of my use of Instagram, I do use it in my everyday life but mainly outside of the library. Despite using it mainly outside of the library I do believe that there is potential for it to be used to interact with the up and coming generation of library patrons, I just haven't figured out how to do so yet.

I hope my answer helped you and I hope you are having a wonderful day.

Misfit Librarian
I'm kind of excited to see if he writes back and if he uses in the journal.

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