Thursday, November 01, 2007

New OCLC Report: Sharing, Privacy and Trust in Our Networked World

OCLC just published another must-read report, Sharing, Privacy and Trust in Our Networked World. This report summarizes the findings from an international study on online social spaces, including social networking attitudes and habits of both end users and librarians. It explores social participation and cooperation on the Internet and how it may impact the library’s role, including:
  • The use of social networking, social media, commercial and library services on the Web
  • How and what users and librarians share on the Web and their attitudes toward related privacy issues
  • Opinions on privacy online
  • Libraries’ current and future roles in social networking

One interesting tidbit from the report: Internet activity keeps going up. Search engine use increased from 71% to 90%. E-mail use grew from 73% to 97%. And the use of blogs, went from 16% to 46% in 18 months. While all those activities keep going up, up up, use of library Web sites dropped from 30% in 2005 to 20% in 2007. Sure different populations and even a few different nationalities were surveyed in the two reports, but still that stat is worth some thought.

Privacy and Trust in Our Networked World follows on the heels of another must-read OCLC report, College Students’ Perceptions of Libraries and Information Resources.