How do the concepts and findings in these sections of the OCLC report reflect your view of the socially networked world in 2012?
“The new Web is a very different thing. Libraries need to be very different, too.”
(OCLC Report 2007, p. 8-8)
With the advent of Web 2.0, it is important to remember the distinction between ‘information consumers‘ and ‘information producers‘.
The Web gives us access to information like never before . While it also allows us to share a collective knowledge with like-minded individuals, it has dispelled the idea of ‘acceptable thoughts’. When there is no governing body to decide or censure the information, such as a publisher, individuals themselves become more critical of what is acceptable and what is not. While this comes as second nature to those who have developed the maturity level to critically analyse information, many individuals, such as children and adolescents, have not developed such skills. Therefore, we have the problem that everything is viewed as being acceptable, with little regard for moral or ethical judgement. Doors previously closed are now open to many. It highlights the issues of privacy, security and trust.
Social networks can include content that is commercially produced, or it can be user driven in its entirety.
An interesting section of the report identified that most social networking sites are used because friends use the same site. As the main reason for using such sites is to connect to people, these sites provide a faster, easier and more accessible way to do so.
Perhaps social networking has reached a point that will change our focus in the future. Instead of depending on sites because they are ‘fun’ or to ‘connect’ with people, more will use social networking to publish and develop their own information.