The title of Edward’s Keynote address to IASI was The Loud Library: Disruption, Media and Social Knowledge
Edward is the Vice President and General Manager, of GameFly Media, GameFly, Inc.
He introduced his talk about The Loud Library by linking to Clayten Christensen’s (1997) concept discussed in The Innovator’s Dilemma, ‘disruptive innovation’.
Edward noted three stages in disruptive innovation: innocent novelty, overlap, crisis. He exemplified this with the emergence of the digital camera and its implications for photographic film producers. He then discussed the disruptions caused to traditional media: music, television and newspapers.
Edward presented data from the World Internet Project Report (2009) to discuss changes in Internet ecology.
In his discussion of the Music industry Edward noted the emergence of MP3 and MP4 formats and the proliferation of peer-to-peer (P2P) hosting sites. He discussed the emergence of harvesting and digital sales whilst noting the demise of ‘conventional’ music industry sales.
Edward noted the demise of broadcast television primetime viewing in the USA. He observed that people watch TV on their own terms and noted the emergence and success of Hulu, ESPN360 and the impact of iPhone.
In his discussion of newspapers, Edward cited Philip Meyer’s The Vanishing Newspaper. He noted too that the Rocky Mountain News closed after 150 years. The decline in newspaper sales is evident throughout the USA as is the business model upon which the newspapers were founded. The emergence of free and reliable on-line news and user generated media streams have had a profound impact on this model. Edward noted Twitter’s success in providing immediate news (US Air Flight 1549 as the case in point).
Millennials have developed a different ecology in accessing the media.
Edward moved from the disruption of music, television and newspapers to a discussion of the disruption to the Library, notwithstanding its existing social functions. Edward argued that the Library is a media organisation and is in the information delivery business. The American Library Association (ALA) has noted generational differences in use of the library space.
Despite the disruption to the Library, Edward had a note of hope for IASI. Librarians have the skills to flourish in the digital age: metadata experts, cataloguers, digitisers, reference points, and communicators. Adaptation is required for fundamental change.
Edward urged IASI delegates to:
1. Know the consumer
Digital natives (Born Digital) post 1990: personal computer available for 15 years, Palm Pilot, Napster, Wikipedia, Skye, iPod, Podcasts, YouTube, MySpace, Facebook, Twitter.
2. Get lost in the cloud. Recognise software as a service. 87% of those under 29 are cloud users.
3. Participate in conversations. There are new ways to interact and communicate. Libraries should be LOUD and an integral part of the conversation business. Libraries should recognise the availability of multiple social networks and the possibility of impacting on the social graph. Examples of these networks are Facebook, LinkedIn MySpace, Bebo, Ning. Twitter. Edward discussed Wikipedia too and encouraged delegated to become part of social graph by adding social knowledge. This is a time for the wisdom of crowds, folksomonies and tags.
In summary, Edward identified important characteristics of adaptation to a new ecology for the library:
- Live in the cloud
- Less attachment to physical collections
- Do not control categorization of knowledge
- Use social knowledge
- Lead conversations where they happen
- Acquire skills specific to social technology
- Surface data from the deep web
- Develop your node in the social graph
Edward concluded his keynote presentation with a discussion of sports libraries, conversations and participatory networks.
He exemplified this with referennce to:
The Flickr Commons
Free online resources.
Google Maps API and Google Earth.
Google’s power and reach.
Edward’s final observation was that IASI can be an important node in the social graph and a point of light in this new ecology.