Over the past few days I've been reading blog posts that provide a review of 2007 from a particular perspective. Depending on the theme of the blog, the recaps focus on trends over the past 12 months related to technology, libraries, news, music, etc. While reading the posts I've been thinking about what are the teen/YALSA/library trends from the past year. A review of the past 12 months of posts on the YALSA blog led to the following list of a few of our own trends in 2007:
- Social networking - web 2.0 didn't show any sign of letting up as an important tool for teens to use in all aspects of their lives. Forrester, OCLC, National School Boards Association, and The Pew Internet in American Life Project (to name just four) published important reports on the role of social networking in teen lives.
- Library programs & services - librarians serving teens continue to try out new and exciting ways to meet the needs of their adolescent customers. Some librarians are looking at virtual worlds as a way to connect with teens. Other librarians are focusing on music to make connections. And, there are librarians who are finding new and innovative ways to connect with teens using a traditional format - the book.
- Copyright - digital rights management (DRM) continues to be a topic librarians need to keep up with in order to serve teens effectively. This year major leaders in various entertainment industries took action in order to stop what they deemed illegal use of digital music and video files. Librarians serving teens need to continue to find the best way to help teens understand the legalities of using digital content. At the same time librarians need to advocate for legal decisions that support teen use of that content.
- Advocacy - librarians working with teens continued to work to educate their colleagues, administrators, and community about the value and importance of serving teens in the public and school library. While there's been lots of progress in this area over the past several years, there are still instances in which librarians find themselves working with staff and community members in order to make sure that teens get the quality service they deserve. A key aspect of a teen librarian's job is to be an advocate for the population she serves.
Did you notice a trend in 2007 related to teens and/or teens and libraries? Let us know with a comment to this blog post.
The YALSA bloggers were busy in 2007 writing posts that explored the world of teens and of libraries. Thanks to each of them for keeping readers up-to-date on a wide-variety of topics. I'm looking forward to reading what they have to say about the stories of 2008.