Two things going on locally bring into focus how I’d like to see library services change in the coming years. The first, wonderfully, is happening at the library in Olympia. Timberland staff and some local folks are coming together to put on an event called “Wikipedia loves Libraries.” The event itself will be held at the Olympia Timberland Library on April 4, and is an editathon of Wikipedia.
The other is a new feature on the Olympia Historical Society’s blog called “Inquiring Minds Want to Know.” Essentially, Society members publicly answer questions put to them. Its a pretty simple concept, but it does a great job of breaking down the walls of local history.
What these two things bring together for me is the concept of preserving and sharing local knowledge online and how incredibly powerful libraries can be. I can imagine expanding the historical society model to reference services and librarians and library users regularly spending time online editing local Wikipedia articles.