Library catalogue is not a community! User contributions to online services of archives, libraries and museums

Submitted by Isto Huvila on Tue, 12/11/2018 - 21:56

Presentation at the BOBCATSSS 2019 conference in Osijek, Croatia.


The importance to provide users with a possibility to contribute to the online services of archives, libraries and museum and the cronic lack of popularity of such functions are two parallel truisms that contradict with each other. This paper reports of a pilot study of user motivations to contribute to online services of ALMs. The findings suggest that reasons to contribute vary considerably between individual contributors but also that many of the services provided by memory institutions are not necessarily considered by users as relevant arenas of engagement. It seems that the users and institutions alike have difficulties to pinpoint the role of the existing services. Two possible ways forward could be to focus on developing services with specific social relevance in particular well-defined contexts, and establishing, framing and communicating the social relevance of existing services in more explicit terms. 

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