Monday, April 21, 2008

New and improved, with 100% more caffeine

So, I - The _Overly_ Caffeinated Librarian (recently updated ;) apparently did a blogging no-no when I hurriedly set up this temporary blogger blog (temporary, because I've just been waiting to move to a university run blog platform, since this is a work-related blog) - I didn't check to see if anyone else had registered, trademarked, or in any other way planted a flag on the phrase "Caffeinated Librarian". I did make sure that the domain name bit caflib was fairly unique - and I choose to use caflib instead of the spelled-out, and hard to key in, caffeinatedlibrarian, because I knew that would make it easier for my co-workers to jot down and find. There is one site using caflib as an actual domain, a company that sells a chicory-coffee mix (maybe something one of the other caffeinated librarians could comment on, because I've never been brave enough to try adulterating my coffee with chicory- it sounds a little -ew- to me), but I figured we could co-exist in peace ;) . I've recently had it pointed out to me that there are at least two other bloggers that have already laid claim to variations of the blog title " Caffeinated Librarian"; "Coffee|Code : Dan Scott, Caffeinated Librarian Geek" (posting since April 2005), and "The Caffeinated Librarian" (posting since Oct 2005) first at live and then on blogger. Mea culpa. I've gone ahead and updated my own blog title to "The Overly Caffeinated Librarian" to facilitate disambiguation. I'm sure there are actually thousands of caffeinated librarians out there (of both the regular and overly-caffed varieties) and it's inevitable that someone else will come along later and use yet another variation of this phrase- coffee and librarianship seem to go hand in hand. Of course, this is not actually an unusual occurrence on the web in general. Try this search for "Megan's blog"- now, find the unique Megan's blog you where theoretically looking for. I'll wait… done? No easy task, is it? I've never told people to look for me online as any variation of "The Caffeinated Librarian"- I always tell them to search for "Robert Slater" (with some extra word like librarian or UIUC) to find my web presence. I never really expected anyone to stumble across my blog accidentally; I don't really think I have that kind of a blog, nor am I an interesting enough person or blogger to attract any fans. I latched on to the phrase "caffeinated librarian" because it aptly described me to those people I was in direct contact/communication with- they knew I'd never be seen without my trusty mug of coffee (at one time, referred to as my coffee barrel).

I do want to take a moment to talk about anonymity and the web- when people mask their actual identities- whether for good reasons or not- it makes it very difficult to locate them. It's also very difficult to establish a base-line level of credibility for any information you find on anonymously posted documents (no news to any info lit librarians out there, I'm sure- I've taught how difficult it is to evaluate web sites as information sources myself occasionally). I'd encourage all bloggers out there who want their information cited/referenced and easily locatable to link your actual identity to your blogs (like Dan Scott and I both did)- it makes it easier for everyone to figure out who we individually are, as well as making your posts discussing the intelligence of fellow librarians more credible and, generally, more civil. Remember, bloggers are people too (despite what some professional journalists may say to the contrary ;) . Just like you, they are blogging for fun, not profit, so we should try to set a friendly tone. Now, since the first Caffeinated Librarian's blog is just a really fun place to chat about recreational activities, there's no real reason for her (I think, without id verification I can't be sure it's her, and not him ;) to post her actual identity, but I've always been straightforward about stating who I am up front- so at the very least, it would be difficult for someone to mistake us for each other.

I hope that this change to my blog title is enough to placate "_The_ Caffeinated Librarian," and that this is the start of a beautiful, very (virtually) caffeinated friendship. :) Oh, and thanks for being the first real human commenter on my blog (until now I've only attracted the attention of some bots…). Okay, enough off topic posting, back to working my lit review of e-book research. Oh, and don't forget to sign up for openCMS training!