Wednesday 25 November 2009

Twitter and repositories: keeping in touch.

I tweet about my work as wrap_ed and I just posted to our members' list to ask if other repository managers also tweet.

This resulted in the creation of two lists on my Twitter profile: one for other repository managers, and one for repository additions.

Les Carr blogged about "Getting Twitter" recently, and indeed I have been a bit slow to get it myself. I think that the new lists facility helps.

Twitter is an interesting mix of the public/private, as with conversations at conferences. I can see tweets from one person to another but I can't very easily follow their whole conversation. I just pick up bits as I walk past!

If I want to have a conversation in Twitter, then I need to be aware of when people are tweeting "at" me. I am likely to have missed some (and appeared to be rude, ignoring someone calling after me at that conference!) because I'm not always in Twitter. Nick Sheppard of Leeds Met just gave me a great tip: every search on Twitter can be turned into an RSS feed. So, I can watch out for tweets "at" me by searching for @wrap_ed and subscribing to that in my RSS feed reader.

Conversations at the conference might be small talk or about more personal stuff but they are all building networks, and as Les's blog post points out, it's the people who tweet all the time about everything who are also providing great informational tweets.

Which is why I particularly like the new lists facility. I can keep track of where the people are whose conversations I might want to dip into, without having to follow them all, all the time! I can also point people who I'm talking to at others whose conversations might interest them.

There were two lists which I created: one for repository managers (people) and one which is about repository additions, generated by code in repositories. I admit that I was sceptical about the value of this sort of tweeting, but if you look at that list you can see that these Twitter feeds do get a considerable number of followers.

In the great Twitter conference we are all saying stuff to audiences who might not exist and could change with the wind, so why not broadcast from our repositories?

Apparently, now I should "tweet" this blog post. My wrap_ed tweets appear on my WRAP blog but not as blog posts, thank goodness, because the headings of my WRAP blog posts are tweeted through the University of Warwick Library Twitter profile! I could then "re-tweet" those through wrap_ed, too, in the other new feature of Twitter, which is kind of like spreading gossip at the conference :-)

A summary of all UKCoRR blog posts goes to the members' list once a month, prepared by our committee secretary. In this instance, though, I started with a direct query to the list so I shall also email about this blog post. Can you all hear me?!

No comments:

Post a Comment