May 27th, 2012

Beyond resource sharing: Twitter #medlibs chat

I’ve been talking about Twitter hashtags ranging from #pubmed and embedded librarianship via Twitter for a long time, but that’s not what I’m discussing in this post.

However, for a ‘where are the medical librarians in social media?’ history lesson I will recommend checking out the pre-hashtag medlibs origins of @mla2008 which then morphed into @medlibs* after the MLA 2008 meeting in Chicago thanks to David Rothman, the original moderator before I took on the group tweet reins sometime in 2009 & still keep an eye on today. I blogged about crashing the #hcsm party back in November 2009 and NLM’s foray into social media in July 2010.

On the first full day of the 2012 Medical Library Association (MLA) meeting, P.F. Anderson proposed having a regularly scheduled #medlibs chat as

This builds on her earlier comment along these lines from June 2011 – great! J Shore began a strategy to identify a time which is appreciated. The problem is that strategy was at the very beginning of MLA, chances are high recall of it is totally lost by now, and participation is limited to those on G+.

Then there’s this

An organized Twitter hashtag chat doesn’t just happen by setting a time though as I’m sure Dana Lewis, moderator of #hcsm, will agree.

There are core issues to tackle, and these are just a few off the top of my head in rough priority order:

  1. If we have a regularly scheduled #medlibs chat, who is the lead organizer/moderator of it?
  2. What topics would we initially like to discuss and how do we get input about future ones?
  3. How many topics per 1 hour (longer?) chat should we have?
  4. Who else besides medical librarians would we like to have participate?
  5. What publicity will be launched to make sure those people are there?
  6. What do we envision as outcomes of this?

Only after these issues have some answers should we be tackling When is it? unless we want to have an initial beta chat then move to regular scheduling.

I am happy to help develop and/or organize but want to put this out here right from the start: I do not claim ownership of the concept and highly encourage others to step up to the plate (the MLA 12 baseball sayings will. Never. DIE in my brain). The reason is because my blogging is on my personal time (note dramatic decrease of that this year) and the work for organizing a #medlibs chat would have to be the same. My family and the job that pays me take highest priority. I’m also in the Pacific time zone where 5-9:30ish pm Eastern is squarely in the middle of work, commute & family dinner time on weekdays. I know our population demographics well – this is a major problem.  I don’t have the solutions but do know by crowdsourcing we can come up with a game plan with great ideas.

* Edit: aww


Posted at 07 19 PM | 4 Comments » | print this post

4 Responses to “Beyond resource sharing: Twitter #medlibs chat”

  1. PF Anderson says:

    Nikki’s questions are broken out into a short 10 question survey here: We’ll share the findings, of course! (But without names) Survey collaboratively designed by @eagledawg, @7Shores, and @pfanderson (yours truly). 🙂

  2. Bonnie Heim says:

    There is a Google+ page for medical librarians, MeLoW (Medical Librarians of the World), that was initiated by Guus Van Den Brekel and myself. Join in if you haven’t already.
    (We mentioned this initiative by the way!)
    There is also a facebook page for MeLoW, and there is another quickly growing group on facebook for Librarian related people
    I wonder how many of the same people are on all of these? Are we seeing new people? How do we attract the others, and where do we attract them to?
    aka Bonnie Heim

  3. Nikki Dettmar says:

    Bonnie I think collaborating more because surely there is overlap here is a great idea – and appreciate the shoutout! I’ll try to connect soon. 🙂

  4. PF Anderson says:

    <3 MELOW. 🙂 I follow it in all those spaces, plus the ScoopIt and PaperLi and all. Definitely want both. #Medlibs has been around longer than MELOW and is used by other healthcare communities when they want to talk to or about medical librarians. And problems with a joint or shared Twitter chat? Or perhaps multiple chats at different times to support different schedules? Think global, act local! 😉 To, ahem, coin a phrase (not!).

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