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Keeping everyone in the loop (discussion topic)

Notes Making sure everyone knows what's going on is always a challenge. Technological solutions like webpages, blogs, wikis, and email lists may help in sharing information, but sometimes a non-technological solution like a whiteboard, bulletin board, quickie meeting or notebook with the "important stuff" works equally well for staff that is in the same physical location.

My question for all of you is "How do you share information amongst your library staff?" Do you have any methods that work really well that might benefit other libraries? For example,

  • If your library has a network problem on Friday, how would you share this info with your Saturday staff?
  • If you're on a committee or email list and hear about an upcoming upgrade or a new service that another library is using, how do you let others at your library know about it?

What great ways have you found to keep staff in-the-loop at your library?  Please leave a comment and share what works... or what doesn't work so well!  If there are certain things that present a particular challenge, perhaps we can address these in a future post...

Using Twitter to find out about outages

Even if you're not a fan of Twitter, there's a use for Twitter you may be able to appreciate --- finding out if other people are having trouble with an online service or site. 

The other week I couldn't access the TechBits blog, which is hosted through TypePad. Was it a problem with my PC? With the TechBits blog? With our TypePad account? With the TypePad service in general?

I hopped on over to Twitter and chose "Search" from the menu at the bottom. I searched for "TypePad" and pulled up all sorts of results from Twitter users who were tweeting about their TypePad troubles (in this case, for the previous 10 minutes that the service had been down). I had my answer -- it wasn't just me, it wasn't our account... the TypePad service was having trouble.Twittersearch

Here's a partial screenshot of a search for "TypePad down" that I did today (click on it to see it full-size) that shows results from when the service was down. You can even see my tweet about my search experience!

There are many Twitter search services and this is just one way that searching Twitter can come in handy.