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Relationship and role transformations in social media environments

Hazel Hall (Centre for Social Informatics, Edinburgh Napier University, Edinburgh, UK)

The Electronic Library

ISSN: 0264-0473

Article publication date: 9 August 2011

Abstract

Purpose

This paper seeks to challenge how librarians conceive a number of relationships – between themselves, social media tools, and end‐users, and to argue that this determines the boundaries of service innovation.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper develops themes and ideas derived from research projects on deployment of social media by library and information professionals completed within the Centre for Social Informatics at Edinburgh Napier University.

Findings

Librarians currently demonstrate more sophisticated use of social media for personal professional purposes than for services delivery; a number of challenges currently limit the extent to which librarians are able to exploit social media to full advantage; fuller exploitation of social media is possible when librarians transfer the good practice exhibited in personal professional use to applications for services delivery; service innovations are considered before tools; and end users are treated as collaborating clients rather than consuming customers.

Originality/value

The paper is of interest to those keen to take advantage of the opportunities offered by social media that extend beyond replicating existing service delivery.

Keywords

Citation

Hall, H. (2011), "Relationship and role transformations in social media environments", The Electronic Library, Vol. 29 No. 4, pp. 421-428. https://doi.org/10.1108/02640471111156704

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited