Libraries Cannot Afford to Ignore Virtual Worlds

Free Image Hosting at www.ImageShack.us Tonight’s WoW2 show is on the Potential for Virtual Worlds in Teaching. Read post here: http://tinyurl.com/27phgh. Toward the end of the session, presenters will talk about Second Life, safety, and teenagers.

The blog post points out that Horizon Report 2007 states that virtual worlds and massive multiplayer gaming will play a significant part in college education in the next 1-5 years. Recently, the Alliance Library System who heads up InfoIsland (over 11 islands in Second Life) won the Library of the Future award for 2007 from ALA/Information Today. (info. to be posted soon on the ALA web site). I saw on Yahoo! this morning where more movies are being offered in 3D here. These environments are ones many teens know how to navigate. It makes sense that librarians working with teens would as well.

I have started a link on the YALSA tech wiki for virtual communities. This wiki is everyone’s space to add and share inforomation. A virtual community is not just about Teen Second Life or what one or two libraries are doing in that particular environment , it is only one way to connect with teens via a medium. Many of us connect our teens with virtual communities through MySpace and YouTube. We are certainly not ignoring that teens are online and we can reach them through a variety of ways. However, reaching them in 3D combines a lot of the elements of Web 2.0 that we already are using. Many libraries are navigating in these environments as well. Please share. Simmons is offering a course on virtual communities now.

The picture is of adults and teens eating cake together to celebrate a birthday in Teen Second Life for one of the teens that has been very involved on the Island.

Posted by Kelly Czarnecki

About Kelly Czarnecki

Kelly Czarnecki is a Teen Librarian at ImaginOn with the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library. She is a member of the YALSA blog advisory board.
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