The Wisdom of Librarians

What do librarians know that Google doesn't?

True, Google doesn't know anything–it simply aggregates searches and feeds the results to the next person who comes along. Yet, every day, millions of people put their information needs in Google's hands, trusting the popular search engine to deliver the correct results.

So, how can librarians and information professionals overcome this "wisdom of crowds" effect and prove their value? Edward Castronova, associate professor and director of the Telecommunications Department at Indiana University, has a few suggestions: (1) become hype killers, because Google amplifies hype; (2) help clients analyze information rather than just find it; and (3) organize the information needs of your organization's members (employees, students, etc.) to form a social information network, then harness it to promote internal collaboration.

Want to learn more about these ideas? Read his article in the forthcoming April/May issue of Information Outlook.

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One response to “The Wisdom of Librarians”

  1. Stuart Hales says:

    Librarians as teachers is an interesting notion, though it raises the question of whether that role will resonate with clients and employers.

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