Friday, 24 June 2011

Blog stalking

CPD23 Thing the Second - reading some other CPD23 blogs, making some comments, responding to comments, making some contacts and finally, writing about all of the above!

Now. I started at the participants page - opening blogs with good titles randomly, then stopped when I realised there are over 500 of us taking part in CPD23. There was so much I wanted to read, and so little time. The internet can feel like one giant conference, going on 24-7. It's very easy to feel overwhelmed and left behind by the sheer amount of stuff going on. This is not the first time I've encountered this - Twitter can induce a similar feeling of mild panic in me, of being incapable of keeping up with it all. Of course, no one can, and this is why as information professionals we of all people are best equipped to roll up our sleeves and tackle vast amounts of information carefully and systematically. So I thought about what I wanted to achieve. I wanted to take a look at blogs by colleagues, blogs by people who had commented on my blog, blogs by people I know via Twitter, and also try and find some fellow archivists/rare book librarians.

My colleagues darklecat and Helen Ceridwen are taking part, so I wanted to see how they were getting on. Darklecat is a cataloguing librarian, who edits the Staff Development and Engagement Newsletter, and I'm hoping she'll write a piece on her experiences of taking part in CPD23, and encourage others to take it up. Helen is also a cataloguing librarian with an extensive career, and blogged about how she hopes to use CPD23 to keep up with the latest developments in librarianship - having already witnessed and adapted to many a transformation of the library sector over the years! Apologies to colleagues I didn't get around to - I will endeavor to track you down and follow you, in a nice way.

I have virtual colleagues on Twitter - librarians I've never met but who tweet interesting links, helpful information, and participate in an engaging daily public dialog with their peers. Bethanar and Marie Lancaster had both left comments on my blog, and make regular appearances in my Twitter feed, so they seemed a good choice. Bethanar has taken the brave step of using Tumblr, a relatively new blogging platform, and her blog is looking super-professional. Marie Lancaster blogged about how she had decided to get involved with CPD23 to get herself up to speed on professional developments, having recently returned to work after maternity leave.

Finally, I used the very useful delicious list of bookmarked participants to find bloggers tagged with rare books, or archives, to find new contacts working in my specialism. Librarian Lou was, along with myself, tagged as 'rare' and 'special' on delicious, which I thought was rather nice. Headstrong Ways is a librarian working in an institution with archives - so I think I may be the only archivist taking part in CPD23? This makes me sad - if you are an archivist, make yourself known!

I've spent some time this week learning how to soup my blog up. I've added an email subscription widget and a twitter stream. You don't have to keep the BBC Micro-style black background and lurid green text it defaults to - there are options to change the colours to get it to suit your blog background. Other useful widgets for blogs here. I've also registered the blog with Google, to make sure it's found in searches. And finally... got my links in Blogger to open in a new window, by following the html instructions here.


  1. Wow, great Thing 1. You inspired me to write more than a paragraph! Thing with the internet, though, is once you've started writing, it's hard to stop.

    Excellent choice of blog photo, by the way. I need to find something more personalised for mine.

    Read my Thing 1 here, I dare you:

  2. Could I add a request for additional 'souping'? There's a gadget for subscribing by RSS, and it gives options to subscribe to posts and comments. I happen to know that is the code to get the comments feed, but other people might not, and without the gadget there's no way to get the comments feed without subscribing to each post as it comes along!

    Sorry for being a demanding reader...


  3. Hi Katie,
    Thanks for the tip! RSS now up and running.