Monday, October 20th, 3:30 to 5:00 Presenters: Laurie Welling & Carole Myles of Assumption College

What is Google Analytics?

  • Free tool to track usage patterns on your library website.
  • Analytics vs statistics
  • Generates metrics: unique ip addresses accessing the site, pages visited, how often and how long, peak   periods of use Why did we select Google Analytics?
  • was designed for eCommerce sites

Why did we select Google Analytics?

  • Track user navigation patterns
  • Make improvements based on our GA stats
  • It’s free!

How did we implement Google Analytics?

  • Need a Google account like Gmail in order to sign up
  • Create a free Google account
  • Log in to GA
  • Add a profile
  • Enter the URL you want to track
  • Activate tracking by inserting system-generated script into your webpages
  • Add users (They can receive reports via email weekly, monthly, quarterly)
  • Edit profile

The Dashboard

  • Set date ranges
  • Customize, and geographical locations
  • Explore all reports by “drilling down” to ever greater detail. The bemailed reports won’t show this. You have to be an active user to go online and drill down.
  • Look at content overview, visitors, traffic sources, goals (goals are eCommerce-oriented)
  • Explore Saved Reports by “drilling down”: visitors overview, traffic sources, map overlay, content over view
  • In Visitors Overview, you can look at visitors’ browsers, operating systems, languages, network locations
  • In Traffic Sources, you can look at percentages of visitors from Direct Traffic (knowing the URL), Search Engines, and Referring Sites
  • Map Overlay will show you exactly where your traffic is coming from: Country, State, City
  • Content Overview will show you what the visitors are looking at and for how long.
  • Conclusion: Google Analytics is a very powerful tool for tracking the traffic to your website, and relatively easy to configure and analyze. You could do it in a matter of hours. Use it to drive the website design, to redirect library resources where needed most, to plan.

Sunday, October 19th, 3:30 to 5:00 p.m. Presenters: Julie Schwartz, CT State Library jschwartz@cslib.org & Alix Quan, Ass’t Director Head of Reference, Massachusetts State Library alix.quan@state.ma.us
Julie’s Schwartz’s Presentation
jschwartz@cslib.org        Another contact: Steven Slovasky sslovasky@cslib.org
The Connecticut State Library initiated the Connecticut Digital Archive Project because so many state documents and reports are now only available online, and often are posted for only a month or two and then disappear. Search engines don’t provide access to most of these publications even though users expect easy access.
The Connecticut Digital Archive was established to alleviate “The Empty Shelf Syndrome,” i.e. no print versions anywhere & difficult or impossible to find on the web, a big problem for the reference department. The digitized archive harvests and ingests “born digital” Connecticut state publications, catalogues them in MARC, and integrates linked records in their OPAC. Then these state publications are made available through Connecticut’s statewide union catalog and WorldCat. They started in 2002 by “grabbing” a group of documents that are 4-5 page reports by various government departments. Linked from their OPAC by using “web harvester” which set up the parameters of the link. Links frequently broke so some were downloaded to desktop and uploaded to catalog. The harvested & ingested “born digital” Connecticut state publications were sent to OCLC’s databases in Ohio. Software is constantly changing so archivists must constantly adapt to change. They can harvest an entire webpage with multiple links on a certain subject as an integrated resource. Sometimes find documents on archived pages. After cataloguing in MARC and integrating the linked records in their OPAC, the records are made available through Connecticut’s statewide union catalog and WorldCat. Sharing these resources are shared and integrated on OPAC, Statewide Union Catalog and WorldCat to improve access. WorldCat is huge, with 64,000,000 records, and 1 billion library records.

WebHarvest grabs a document from a URL on the web and ingests it on their OPAC with NO errors or changes. Using metadata is key for accuracy. The best method is like picking raspberries, slower process but more quality. Their secret weapon is Steven Rice who combs through CN state agency websites looking for suitable documents for the state library’s database. Standardization is another basic principle of digital preservation. “Name authority control”. We need to know who did the preservation and how it was done. Preservation metadata.
OCLC says the data will be migrated or emulated as their website changes, now they say they will “manage” data.
Library of Congress NDIIPP (National Digital Information Infrastructure Preservation Program) http://www.digitalpreservation.com Web Archives Workbench takes a more archival approach. CONTENTdm is OCLC’s latest – it makes everything in your digital collection available to everyone, no matter the content. Connecticut says it’s not working very well.

Alix Quan Ass’t Director Head of Reference, Massachusetts State Library alix.quan@state.ma.us
To develop the State Library of Massachusetts’s Electronic Documents Archive, open source software was used. This Open Source Institutional Repository Software was developed in 2002 by MIT and HP to store theses and dissertations. It’s robust but bare bones, written and customizable in Java
In 2003 the state library received funding to: configure a webcrawler that would locate and download .pdf and .doc files from agency sites, create a database that manages these downloaded files, and purchase a server to store them. They found that the documents were difficult to locate, no permanence. State law requires agencies and legislative offices to send State Library copies of any publications they produce, but no one complies. They configured the webcrawler to find and grab documents in various formats, and found it worked too well. It found so many documents, it was difficult to manage. Some of what was retrieved were not what was wanted. So they took another approach. As electronic items were discovered, they were catalogued with links to agency websites.

In the 2nd phase, they chose DSpace as electronic depository. Even though they preferred open source, they found that it isn’t really free because it needs a high level of Java expertise to configure. DSpace provided keyword indexing of all the documents. In 2005 &06 they received funding to scan MASS Session Laws (Acts and Resolves), approx 50,000 pages. Each Act is a separate file and fully keyword-searchable. These are used heavily by legislative staff, lawyers and town officials. They created separate PDF and tax files for each, and in addition, downloaded a copy of each so that the state library would have a permanent copy. They are encouraging agencies to notify us about new “digitally born” reports, and can having them send the link or a copy of document to a state library email account. To date, they have added 1000 docs. Staff is identifying and adding other scanned docs. They have set up a scanning center at Boston Public Library: They scan it, and OCR it . Have done Legislative Biographical directories and Annual Reports from 1840s on. They are collaborating with UMASS Boston, UMASS Amherst and Boston Public Library. UMASS Boston is sponsoring the dig of older Acts and Resolves from 1600s to 1940s. Other area institutions have scanned other series: UMass Amherst – Yearly report on Vital Statistics, Election Statistics, Fruit Notes,
and Annual Reports of Northampton State Hospital, Boston Public Library – Soldiers and Sailors of the Revolutionary War, Boston University – some years of the Department of Public Health. The State Library has created a webpage with links to the major series scanned: www.mass.gov/lib/collections/dc/StateDocumentsOnline.html More material from throughout the country is being scanned and added constantly to the
Internet Archive site: www.archive.org

Future Plans:
• Download archival copies of scanned docs and make available on dSpace (for the keyword search capability)
• Migrate and upgrade dSpace to the state library to be managed there.
• Evaluate other digital asset management systems to see what meets needs best.
• Put all digital projects in one central location
Contact Information
Alix Quan
Assistant Director/Head of Reference
State Library of Massachusetts
24 Beacon Street
Boston, MA 02133

Sunday, October 19th, 1:00 to 2:30 Presenter: Amy Benson of Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard <amy_benson@radcliffe.edu>
Amy Benson

  • How social networking and 2.0 technologies impact privacy issues and policies.
  • How libraries can use patron information to customize and individualize services.
  • What must be kept private? There are issues of trust with regard to customization and targeted adverts.

Discussion of libraries & privacy: legal aspects, technological aspects, mindsets, opportunities, expectations offline & online, on both the library’s website vs in the physical library

In the “Real” World, both online and offline, we leave footprints, often without knowing it: Consider requests for your zip code and tel #, the proliferation of discount/loyalty cards, online credit card transactions, cell phone use. Consider the dry cleaner who can ascertain your personal information from knowing your phone number, use of EZ Pass (individual tracking could get you a speeding ticket, while aggregate tracking could keep you out of a traffic jam by providing accurate traffic reports).

In the “Web” World, sharing personal information is a requirement Searches, email, maps -all require sharing personal information.

“Hanging out” on the Web Americans watched 558 million hours of online video during the month of August 2008, according to Alexa.com.

Users should:

  • Check set-up applications carefully. Facebook shares your personal info with other “Know who I am and access my information” applications. You can set categories of viewers and individual viewer settings as well.
  • Read Privacy policies
  • Note Trust/Privacy symbols on websites.

Users want control but not barriers to sharing & collaborating.

Library website use declined between 2005/07, the only segment of web search that declined- young people don’t find library systems intuitive so they turn to Google and Yahoo. They are used to having their info tracked, and it doesn’t particularly bother them. The barriers of log-ins and authentication checks irritate them. According to a recent OCLC survey, consumers believe that information found on the Web is as creditable as that found in a library.

User profiles and histories allow sites to supply targeted info – Amazon, Gmail, iTunes, Facebook’s newsfeed. Young users rely on this customization and don’t mind giving out personal information to get it. Users self-filter through customization. Examples: Pandora, the music genome project, allows users to their music preferences in order to hear “sound-alikes.” Downside: The user can be profiled into a cocoon and never challenged. Using Rollyo (Roll-your-own-search engine), a library could customize searches in preselected sites with a roll-your-own searchroll designed for a certain demographic. Use Google web history (tracks your own search history) so you can track your searches – any registered user of a Google product can use this.

Questions to keep you up at night Filtering narrows the information flow. Can libraries automate information delivery? Can libraries allow people to customize the flow of information from the library to them? Do we librarians want to go in this direction? If the trend is toward self-service, where does that leave libraries? What value can we add? What if the only economically sustainable model is to generate revenue based on content supplied?

What is data made of:

  • personally identifiable
  • Anonymized (anonymous)
  • Aggregated
  • Archived

Lack of control: Data is often hosted on systems and servers that we have no control over (Ex: Flickr – Note here the value of and difference between individualized tags rather than more formal objective aggregate ones) See YouTube: Supermarket 2.0.

What do they do with all that data? Personal information is a very valuable commodity, especially the preferences and habits of consumers. Analysis of this information is used for creating personalized suggestions for purchase (targeted adverts), as well as aggregated feedback for what is popular. Example: Gmail electronically generates ads based on content of emails in return for the free email service. Look at Google’s privacy policy. Note: If libraries offer customization based on personal profiles, patrons must have the option of opting in or out of this service.

Consider what aggregated data can produce, like Wikipedia, exemplifying individual personal tags versus collective wisdom. Google Image Labeler, Who is sick? Google floats beta tests out there all the time. Check out “Big Brother Pizza Shop” on YouTube posted by the ACLU.

It all comes down to trust: No such thing as a free lunch. We give up a measure of privacy for a measure of convenience. Users must be allowed to judge the trade-offs Steven Colbert “Wikiality” Libraries can bring more trusted and vetted resources to the table.

WorldCat.org is accessible to anyone, LibraryThing

Libraries can make use of personal information to customize, but patrons must have the option of opting in or out of these customized services. According to an OCLC survey, personal information on the Internet is more private now than 2 years ago; 52% of young people are less likely to feel the privacy constraints. 60% of respondents trust the library. Only 11% of respondents rate activity on a library website as private. On the other hand, Web searches were considered private by more than 25%. 54% look for security icons. Respondents had reservations about giving out credit card #s and phone #s. 24% are unsure if the library website has rules on how private data is used. Note from Jay the blogger: don’t take the above stats as gospel, “The hurrider I went the behinder I got” (paraphrased from AA Milne’s Winnie the Pooh).

Librarians should check their state’s RSAs, not just the legislation but also case histories, etc.

Patrons must retain control over their personal information. There is a balance between privacy and convenience, transparency vs restriction (log-ins, etc) which should be thoroughly explained to patrons.

In conclusion: libraries should:

  • Eliminate barriers
  • Strive for transparency by letting users know what to expect, and how to opt in and out of these personalized services.
  • Strive for ease of use
  • Serve as information guide and trusted source
  • Permit end users to contribute content on and off the library webpage.
  • Do more with the data you are currently collecting
  • Move from counting stats to watching users to understand their needs, habits and desires and to capture and analyze user behaviors.
  • Use that data to recommend, suggest, serve, and assess those services.
  • Offer users ways to contribute and collaborate (Use focus groups or bibliographic classes).

Privacy policies to peruse: Boston Public Library, ALA code of ethics, Danbury Library

Hello folks, I’m Jay Rancourt, the library director at Cook Memorial Library in Tamworth, NH. The village of Tamworth is small (Pop.2500) and rural (dogs sleep in the street outside the library), and looks like a place that Norman Rockwell painted. The library is smack dab in the center of things, both geographically and metaphorically. My daughter, Lichen Rancourt, who is presenting on Tuesday morning, created an open source website for my library as a public library beta test for Scriblio. The library patrons love it, especially the young ‘uns.

I’ve been wanting to write “Tales of a small library” for a long time. Sometimes I feel like I’m working on the set of a library sitcom, or drama, depending on the day….

Everything is happening all the time. Even in our small town.

There are interesting characters coming in and out, bringing their feuds, standoffs, love affairs, accidents, crushes, small disputes, gossip, moments of mayhem and profound joy to our little library every day. and that’s just the staff. Heh, heh.

On my good days, I feel like I’m standing tall at the center of the universe. Which, of course, I am…at least MY universe. SuperLibrarian.

Other days I’m drowning in quicksand, up to my neck in…..paper, accounting, piles of random runaway books, unanswered letters, broken computers, staff problems, questions, phonecalls, doors that won’t close, security systems that fail, teenage hackers to fight off, scratched brand new DVDs, ILL overdues, wonky cataloguing, a poor but expensive automation system that won’t comport itself properly, slow connectivity, books checked in with strawberry jam smeared on them, broken raw eggs thrown into the bookdrop, pictures falling off the wall, a snowshoveler who makes more than I do but who doesn’t show up on open days, so I have to do the shoveling.

Rant, rant, rant. You get the idea. But don’t get me wrong. I love my job most of the time. Just not when I’m busy hating it.