Testing out the YouTube app on the new iPhone and I was super-impressed by the quality and speed of the download on the WIFI network.
But this morning I tried to search for some of the videos that amused me most. Less Okay-Go and more 60s concerts. Searching for “Byrds” didn’t give me any Byrds concerts when searching on the iPhone’s YouTube utility. It gave me Paris Hilton getting out of jail and someone named Byrd shouting at her. Names of Bryds members gave me no videos found!
But back on the web at YouTube.com, I got lots and lots of Byrds. No problem.
Testing with “Chumbawamba” gets one vid on the iPhone with “Tubthumping” in the background as dominoes fall down in a spiral.
Back on YouTube.com, lots of great Chumbawamba videos are found.
YIKES! Is the iPhoneTube only licensed material? Is the great old stuff and the new crazy homebrew stuff cut out?
Do you see [online] social networking as a serious, long-term cultural and business phenomenon?
My brother, who was working in a prison ministry,told me: “The guys when they get out they have no networks that’s why it’s hard for them to find jobs or a place to stay or even a place to just have fun.”
Of course, this is part of what prison is about breaking down the social network that got the guys in trouble in the first place. What’s missing, as my brother noticed, is a replacement network. Without a network and associated social support we become steppenwolves, single that will not survive.
We are in a time not on no tribes but of multiple tribes, not of a single family but of multiple families, not in a time of a single social network but of multiple networks — each of the highly and loosely connected social structures more easy to manage in terms of time shifting, commitment, and in selection.
How to make the support of these networks sustainable and flexible is the challenge be it in the form of a business, a government or a group of volunteers.
How can libaries (etc.) best work to shape the next wave? Should they?
First “Yes” to part two of the question, then:
Let’s start with online social network systems instead of starting with libraries.
SNSes are not so much about building networks as about managing existing social relationships as numerous studies point out. Not a life on the internet or a life in Second Life so much as, as Wellman puts it, Internet in Everyday Life.
SNSes and other technologies are good for libraries, if libraries can use them to increase and strengthen social ties between the institution and to those using and supporting the institution, to provide services seamlessly or at least more conveniently. In short to become more of a part of our Everyday Lives.
SNSes are very good at this or so much better than what we’ve had before that their use and potentials are immediately visible.
A tale from today:
I subscribe (via RSS) to a blog at a regional newspaper.
The author there covers state government issues. He is off on an amusing tangent on “Catfish Ammendments.” Where did the phrase come from and what does it mean?
He asks his readers and several old state government hands reply and/or put him into contact with other old hands.
He does a Google Book Search and finds a snippet reference to a 1904 Congressional Appropriations Committee hearing.
But he asks how to get to read more. I alert him to WorldCat.org (you don’t have to pay me for saying this OCLC).
At the same time, I realize that the University Library Reference Desk is my IM friend!
I IM my friend the Reference Desk. Sure enough we have the 1904 document on microfilm. And the Desk, who I now know as a person I pass in the parking lot, can and will do further research.
I put the blogger/journalist in touch with the Desk and we all chat then move to email.
Frankly I and the Libraries and OCLC would have liked it if we were higher on the list of interactions. But realistically, folks ask their friends first — every study shows that.
Libraries need to be part of the Everyday Lives and of the friend relationships managed by SNSes. The nature of those SNSes may be 3D virtual, text, image, IM, Facebook, MySpace or something still in the garage or coffee shop just down the road.
Libraries need to use technology to help shape the information seeking, interpreting and usages of the future. These technologies can help libraries be our better friends — and dare I say it, our better angels.
A sort addendum to my post.
This just came in from my Reference Desk friend which shows the value of the Library online vividly:
Look at the image of the document cover on the Google book search page you sent me: the second line from top reads “appropriations for 1964″ not 1904.
We have the 1964 hearing; p. 616, 2nd paragraph from the bottom reads: “Messrs Bouldin, Vogtle, and Pulley remind one of the fisherman who held a small wriggling fish in his hand, preparatory to cleaning it for eating, and said: “Hold still, little fish. I’m not going to hurt you–I only want to gut you.”
This is part of the statement of Basil Thompson, General Manager, Alabama Electric Cooperative, Inc. pp. 609-618.
Specifically, how do you see it [online social networks] affecting libraries/museums? Right now, and in the future?
The question might be rephrased as how will the online affect the offline and vice versa.
We’ve seen vividly how the frictionless movement of information and goods is affecting the world economies. How the music industry while trying to mount a resistance is in meltdown. How publishing and reading has been changed in what seems for the near term to be irreversible ways. Ask the encyclopedia folks. Ask a small textile town in the Southern US.
If libraries and museum act on their heritage as places for intellectual improvement and social interaction and cultural cohesion, there is a great future for them.
If they act as warehouses for cultural treasures as interpreted by the dominant culture, their days are numbered.
Academic libraries lead public libraries in the transition since more and more academic knowledge is shared digitally more quickly than popular knowledge. But this is only for the moment.
In the past few months, I have been in meeting with several different groups planning small town museums and cultural destinations. All of them talk more about services and events and involvement of the public than about amassing treasures in the traditional sense.
Online, whether social or no, distributes access to the treasures widely and without much friction. The online social networks can, if wisely participated in, increase the value of the institution and to the access of the original.
Oddly, digital access creates a fetish for the original, a desire to see the object up close, a need to meet the person who wrote those words or is represented by that avatar.
Cultural institutions are challenged to find creative and effective ways to exploit this need to meet, to see the original, to follow discussions with physical actions, to enhance the social.
What are the impacts, overall, do you think [of online social networks] on industry, education and cultural institutions?
As with the advent of writing, telegraph, TV and radio, we are seeing reconfigurations of power and of structures for social capital exchange. That is the Bourdieu-ian closure are being restuctured if not smashed.
There is no deterministic answer to this question, but we can make some guesses. Although I remind myself how much we cannot see whilst in the midst of the process (see Forecasting the Telephone by Pool for a cold awaking as to how wrong and how right we can be), — am I hedging enough? I notice that others have perhaps wisely avoided this question — I will say that we are surely seeing a restructuring in knowledge access and in cultural production and in preservation that allows for widely distributed holdings of materials and centrally facilitated access. Additionally there will be strong reactions, including moral panic, to this change. As the tensions resolve, we may have a new period of enlightenment or a new dark ages.
We can count on change, reorder, and reconfigurations of institutions and of the powers that they represent.
I’m one of four participants in a virtual roundtable for OCLC NextSpace. The others are Fred Stutzman, Lori Bell, and Ed Castronova. I’ll not post their writings here — for that go to the next issue of OCLC NextSpace — but I will post mine here for your comments.
How do you define online social networking? Examples of how it’s working well and not so well…
a social structure made of nodes (which are generally individuals or organizations) that are tied by one or more specific types of relations, such as values, visions, idea, financial exchange, friends, kinship, dislike, trade, web links, sexual relations, disease transmission (epidemiology), or airline routes.
In its simplest form, a social network is a map of all of the relevant ties between the nodes being studied. The network can also be used to determine the social capital of individual actors. These concepts are often displayed in a social network diagram, where nodes are the points and ties are the lines.
A friend from Europe twittered me that an online social network is an Interactive e-PLAYground community.
This last elides the other work of social networks as seen in LinkedIn and Match and Classmates to name three.
Bourdieu writing in the 80s saw that social networks were defined largely by who was left out, by their exclusiveness and by how they allocated social and knowledge capital to their members to provide them with an advantage over outsiders.
Lin, Burt and Granovetter all notice that closed social networks have certain advantages but the interactions between such networks — not closure or density — are more important to social capital growth and exchange.
Online social networks draw their strength by not just hosting one social network bound by a Dunbar number (150), but a highly porous set of interactions between “natural” social networks. Not just kids at a certain school or from a certain class but a broader mesh of such smaller networks with casual interactions building and supporting stronger interactions. Messages culminating in a meetup say.
Some sites allow social interactions but are not really supporting social networks explicitly (say newspaper site discussion boards), some are swamped by social networks that change the nature of the networks on that site (say Brazilians on Orkut or Burning Man attendees on Friendster).
Whatever the technology, it is the social that actually provides the networks and the interactions.
Rolling Stone explains (again) how the Music industry blew it over and over and how they plan to reconfigure yet again in a two part series (part one out today). Hillary Rosen, once RIAA flackcatcher, says of the Napster period: “The record companies needed to jump off a cliff, and they couldn’t bring themselves to jump.”
And yes we bought the Paul McCartney CD at Starbuck’s, but once we listened Tucker and I could only stand a few songs. Would we have bought only portions of the collecton on iTunes? Yes.
Just back from a great ceremony and party for Fred and Chelcy’s wedding. Besides the obvious main and wonderful attraction — the wedding — the chat and fellowship after during the reception brought us to some new friends and to some old.
I learned that Maverick Farm is the place we’ve been driving by at the bottom of the valley all week. Sara Safransky is one of the folks running it even though she’s also a grad student at Chapel Hill.
The cool rain came across the mountains last night and this morning’s breeze is clearing off the fog. Brought my espresso machine so’s I can sit out and take in nature and list a few links worth reading:
When I tried playing panzy in Scrabble, I was quickly shutdown. But then I tried fizx and the other players really got mad. But my master stroke was changing store to ruustore for a pile of points. My making crowing noises convinced no one that I might have a new useful spelling.
Then Tucker found this lolcat and I was almost given my points back for fizx. He had tried mooter which we later that evening found on a vanity license plate. He wanted points for that…
At Fred’s bachelor party at the Durham Bull’s game yesterday, I wondered outloud about the amount of stuff going on that had nothing to do with baseball. At every break there was some contest or some mascot shooting shirts or hamburgerhelper hands into the crowd. It was a relentless assault on the senses and often made no sense at all.
Fred, who unlike me or Jimmy Wales knows a lot about baseball quipped: “Baseball is a partial attention sport.” Yes yes it made so much sense then. To be family friendly, the baseball folks have to provide attention getting activities for kids attention.
Now I’m up in Valle Crucis looking down in the valley itself — but on the net. The place here has a great connection and wireless. The breeze is cool and the view, a vista of greens of every shade.
Expect only partial attention to the net for this week. And that attention will not likely be continuous ;->
The work will be both streamed via video at select locations inside Second Life, while a rendition of 77 Million Paintings has been created by blueair.tv creative partner Annabeth Robinson, known virtually as AngryBeth Shortbread.
Two evenings, June 29th and 30th, are open to the general public at multiple venues across Second Life, with the largest public area provided by Joi Ito (Kula Sims). The final night, July 1st, is a private event that will be held in appreciation for Long Now members worldwide (members.longnow.org) and hosted on the Leeds College of Art and Design’s Digital Media Sim. Members of The Long Now Foundation staff and board will also be visiting the Second Life sims throughout the weekend and during the member event on Sunday evening.
MacArthur President Jonathan Fanton and Second Life CEO Philip Rosedale are inviting us to an event we can’t miss. They will host a dialogue, in Second Life, as their avatars (yes, the President of one of the largest foundations in the world has an avatar) discuss the role of philanthropy in virtual environments. Engaging in these conversations early and directly with Second Life participants will help understand and identify ways the philanthropic sector can serve the public in the virtual world.
WHEN: Friday June 22, 2007, 9 am PST (noon EST).
I’ll be in the mountains and off the grid for most of next week enjoying life otherwise. Light blogging at best.