Like an email from Sarah Lohre, about a month ago. Sarah hails from Germany and is part of a team who run "a little experiment" and call themselves Infobib (interestingly, I learned about how their experiment got started not from their blog but from someone else's blog post! They probably have an explanation somewhere in their Infobib post, but in German.)
I was asked to blog "an overview of library-related blogs in Singapore". Wow, tall order. Where do I even start? So I pretended as if I was having a conversation with someone, and I rambled about:
Overview of library-related blogs in Singapore [I wrote: "Now, there are about 15 active blogs written by Singapore librarians. Back in 2005, there was perhaps a quarter of that number."]
Singapore “Liblogarians” [I listed five librarians' blogs there. I chose them because they posted quite regularly... and YES, I was biased and chose only Liblogarians who worked for NLB! Of course that's not doing justice to other non-NLB Liblogarians in Singapore. But I was weak and caved in to organisational loyalty. I guess I should have been more objective. To make amends, you folks can check out my public blogroll of Singapore Liblogarians -- it's not exhaustive so if you're a SG Liblogarian, and wish to "come out of the closet", I'd love to hear from you!]
Library-institutional blogs [There's no official documentation of when library institutional blogs started, but I'm confident my information is correct as to when the first Singapore library-related blog was started. And it wasn't NLB's. I learned recently that there are more library-institutional blogs in Singapore, from NTU, so I'll find time to post about them later -- unless someone beats me to it first (yes, please do, heh) *Update: Hazman blogs about the NTU library blogs]
What do I expect from the future of library and library-related blogs in my country? I shall reproduce this portion in its entirety:
In the last 10 years, the reputations of many libraries in Singapore have improved tremendously, due to the many proactive changes adopted by the public, national and academic libraries. The image of librarians has also improved generally, although many people still do not really know what goes on within the profession. Stereotypes still abound.
I sense that younger librarians recognise they will be the ones to effecting that change in mindsets, about what the profession is about. So I think there will be more librarians taking up Social Media (like blogs, podcasts, and wikis) as a way to engage and connect with users and non-users alike.
Or to learn new skills in order to keep up with whatever’s happening on the Internet. I can personally attest to this part – I’ve learned so much from my blogging “experiments”, and you tend to meet many helpful people in the blogosphere. The amount of genuine sharing is tremendous. It works both ways.
I’d expect libraries and librarians to be around in Singapore for a long, long time. It’s clear to me that library and information professionals in Singapore have the fortitude to adapt and evolve according to circumstances and changing user needs.
Thanks again, Sarah and folks at the Infobib team, for this opportunity to share about the Singapore library blog scene. The full post of my guest entry can be found here.
You might want to take time to check out other guest posts they've invited, from librarians from other countries.
I particularly appreciate the posts, deliberately written in English, from countries where English isn't the first language. Like Spain, Hungary, Norway, Iran, France, Belarus, and many others in between. I'm sure more will be added.
Oh, they add that: "If you don’t see your home country in this list and you feel that writing an article about your country’s biblioblogosphere would be a good idea, please contact one of us."