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Christina's LIS Rant
Tuesday, June 14, 2005
  Tagging or Wikifying WorldCat or the A&I Databases
Is it ok to say that I'm a little scared of tagging or wiki-fying the WorldCat or the engineering database? Please don't get me wrong, there are lots of wonderful things that could occur. Users could append notes to records on
Think about the wonderful value added by thoughtful, insightful researchers and students.

Ok, now my concern. Think about the vandals, the pranksters, undergrads who don't get it, etc., and their notes attached to the brand you've connected your library brand to. We push these resources and go on all day to anyone who will listen (and frequently to those who are forced to sit there even if they don't listen) about the wonderful library resources and the authoritative information. As GP pointed out in a recent presentation, frequently accessed items will take care of themselves -- people will clean up the mess. Infrequently accessed items may stagnate with inappropriate, inaccurate, or gross information. It's completely unreasonable to assign local library database admins or electronic resource specialists to monitor this kind of thing. They are so overworked as it is.

So what's the answer? How can we get all the wonderful input (and allow intellectual freedom) and not allow vandals to ruin the brands? Require library card authentication before making a comment? Can't really do that. What if you want to say that your professor's book is a piece of junk (before your grade is turned in)? Ideas anyone?

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This is my blog on library and information science. I'm into Sci/Tech libraries, special libraries, personal information management, sci/tech scholarly comms.... My name is Christina Pikas and I'm a librarian in a physics, astronomy, math, computer science, and engineering library. I'm also a doctoral student at Maryland. Any opinions expressed here are strictly my own and do not necessarily reflect those of my employer or CLIS. You may reach me via e-mail at cpikas {at} gmail {dot} com.

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Christina Kirk Pikas

Laurel , Maryland , 20707 USA
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