On a typical day of walking around the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh Teen space, only one computer activity reigns alongside social networking: watching videos. Therefore, it was no surprise when I read the new Nielson study shows that teens are the #1 consumers of streaming online video. According to the report, teens mostly use online video for music videos, tv shows and anime, and to connect socially by sharing amateur videos with their friends.
They’re also turning to online video as a resource for information, from how to beat levels in video games to explanations of vector mathematics. With these trends, it’s likely that online video is going to play an increasingly important role in delivering information, as they can literally see the information play out before their eyes without missing a beat in any of their other online activities. Of course, this means online video will play an increasingly important role in your library.
Even though Teen Tech Week was in March, our library used that time to promote something new (for us, anyway) – a teen video contest. One of the challenges we face as a medium-sized library system is keeping our programming lean and focused, so we combined two ideas to make this program work:
1) our Central Library wanted to have a teen video contest this spring
2) we needed high school involvement to fulfill a Big Read grant in April/May
The combination of the programming was great, as it allowed us to use contacts we’d made with Kansas City Public Television and TimeWarner Cable. We were also able to reach out to school districts in a different way through broadcast media classes. In addition to giving the contest a tight focus, we were also able to encourage teens to experience The Maltese Falcon, our Big Read pick.
We’re nearly ready to announce the winner – and we’ve had a lot of fun with this initiative. Check out the demo video that the KCPT interns made for us below, and try a video contest yourself – you won’t regret it!