Saturday, October 1, 2011

Libraries as a Community

YouTube is familiar to me as Google.  In fact, due to its immense popularity, I feel that like Google it also has the tendency to take the form of a verb; just Google it, just YouTube it.  Shamefully, I mostly use YouTube to find music, which is probably the equivalent to typing a web address into the Google finder box to get to a website.  Other than that I’ve never really gotten into YouTube, so I decided to explore Vimeo for this task.  I was pleasantly surprised by the videos I accessed on the site and liked how it was set up.  Unfortunately, Vimeo doesn’t seem to have the extensive range of videos that YouTube offers, but I liked the grassroots, independent feel of the site and their videos.  I did not find many videos on their site pertaining to libraries, but I did discover Book Aid International that used Vimeo to spread the word about their cause.  The video below shows a library in Mathare North, Africa.  One of the pivotal points of the video is how the library creates a sense of community.  There is tribalism everywhere in that region except in the library, which illustrates the magnitude of strength a library holds in that society, and any society for that matter. 

Mathare North Community Library from Book Aid International on Vimeo.

The Mathare North video depicting such a simplistic library is interesting to compare to the video on “Libraries of the Future” that I discovered on YouTube.  This video discusses many of the issues concerning libraries at the moment and many of the questions people have about where libraries are going.  Even though this video is focused on a futuristic library, one that by nature will be much more technologically advanced than the African based one above, they both stress the core of the library being a community.

With the common thread of community illustrated in both videos, any library can utilize that same idea on their website.  Showcasing how a library creates a sense of community will only allow more people to see what the library has to offer and will feel that much more welcomed to frequent it.

1 comment:

  1. I was a little bit surprised by the level of familiarity with YouTube. It is often claimed to be the world's second largest search engine after Google. Your point about using YouTube to find music is one of the reasons why my husband and father are very familiar with YouTube even though they are otherwise not very technically savvy. They have also discovered how to pull YouTube music videos through the television using Tivo and DirecTV and play numerous varied artists.