Prior to working at Toddington, Ms. Clegg worked for 10
years as a detective with the West Yorkshire Police in the UK.
Images are from her slides.
We are living in a digital world!
In order to be a
competent, successful citizen, you need a new set of tools
-Lee Rainie, Pew Research Center
The largest group of digital users is in Asia, but they
constitute less than 30% of the Asian population.
North America and Europe are pretty saturated with 78% and
63% of the population already digital users.Greatest growth potential is in Africa, Asia and Latin America.
Digital use will take off as we move into the Internet of
Things – when we are connected with our refrigerators and cars and we get
reminders of what we products we need at home while we are shopping.
Technological change is happening twice as fast social
change in incorporating the new technologies.Business is moving even more slowly.It is hard to keep up and we can’t always afford to keep up.New phone technologies are rolled out
Among new technologies – geo-tagging (in social media posts
and photos) has led to geo-fencing.Building an electronic fence around a spot and harvesting the Twitter,
Insta-gram and other posts within the fence.
The value of a network
grows as the square of the number of its users increase.
-Robert M. Metcalfe, co-creator of Ethernet
There are a variety of Social Media categories:
Collaboration and Crowdsourcing – vBulletin
Dicussion Boards, Google Groups
YouTube is social network platform but it is also a search
tool.It is a good resource to find
training and product information.
Gaming platforms – World of Warcraft and virtual worlds like
2nd Life are great places for social interaction and research and
investigation.There can be product
reviews.Some universities have set up
campuses in 2nd Life and you can take classes by placing your avatar
into a classroom.
Both are good ways to access person-to-person
interaction.From a law enforcement
perspective it is important.As
technology develops there are complaints of online offenses requiring new
definitions and reporting of crimes.
Blogs tend to have low readership currently, but when they
first took off in 2007 people were sharing a lot of personal information.Some blogs are online diaries and still good
sources for personal information on individuals.
Foursquare is an example of a space timer.Sites like this tell you that a person was at
specific place at a particular time.
Space locators are location-sensitive only.TripAdvisor and Yelp tell you where people
Quick timers are time-sensitive only – Twitter and Facebook
Slow time – neither time, nor location specific.Sites like Wikipedia and YouTube.Items here will be around for a long time,
Social Media Building
Ms. Clegg talked about the elements of social media –
Presence, Relationship, Reputation, Identity, Groups, Conversation and Sharing.
Linked-In is focused on Identity and pulls in elements of Reputation,
Relationship and Groups.
Foursquare focuses on Presence with elements of Identity and
YouTube is about Sharing – and secondarily about
Conversation, Groups and Reputation.
Facebook is a big winner – it is really about Relationships
with elements of Presence, Reputation, Identity, Conversation and Sharing.
Twitter is another big winner – but its primary focus is on
Sharing and secondarily about Presence, Relationship, Reputation, Identity, and
How connected are we?
Ms. Clegg showed examples of people putting social media
ahead of personal safety.
Posing for photos at fire scenes
Updating Facebook status while driving (her
example was related to an actual fatal accident)
An incident with a man taking a hostage and
posting to Facebook – and others updating with police movement and activity.
Tracking people using
Now there are tools (some free, some for purchase) that
allow you to draw a digital fence around a location and pick up the Twitter,
Instagram and other posts at that location.
You can draw a fence around someone’s house and follow their
posts and tweets.Use this to find a
Twitter user name and perhaps a Facebook profile.Search in Facebook on photos – or photos that
someone has liked – find their friends.
Often an individual is careful to monitor his/her Internet
activity and profiles, but their friends and family members may not be as
Using Geofeedia Ms. Clegg’s company found a posting by an
employee at a secure location.There was
a clear photo showing the employee’s desk – his monitor that was displaying a
classified document and his personal laptop that was in used.Both are violations of security guidelines.
Another location they found a posting by a soldier who was
scheduled for deployment.She was posing
with her rifle.From that post they
could pull up her Facebook profile and photos of herself and her friends.
Knowing her Twitter profile name they could search on the
Teaching Privacy website for other posts by her worldwide and see where she has
One trick that Ms. Clegg showed was an enhancement of the
familiar wild card search in
Google.Put a name in quotes but add an
* - “Lisa * Smith”The * acts as a wild
card and will cover up to 4 additional words between the names.
Ms. Clegg used this on one project and was able to find the
name of a subject’s wife.The subject
had done a good job of keeping his own online profile low, but not his wife and
family.With the wife’s name she was
able to find associations with the children’s school and then photos on
Facebook and Twitter of the children.Following Twitter posts and the time and location stamp she was able to
trace the subject’s route to work – dropping the kids at school and on to his
place of business.
For all this geo-tracking – Ms. Clegg concluded by showing
us a site:
If a city tears up the same street three times over a six
month period to install three different cables, there’s a KM problem.
If KM is imposed by IT – no one will do it.
There are often multiple KM groups within the same
You have to look at the cultural aspect of the organization
in order to see how you can incorporate KM practices.
How do we proceed?Short term – it may be easy to fix an immediate KM short-coming.Provide someone with the information s/he
needs.But what about the long term?
How do you find out what you need to know about your
Hire a consultant.Conduct a survey.Become an
Undercover Boss!Just like the TV show,
go undercover to find out what problems exist in your organization so you can
New hires are another source of information on what is going
on and what isn’t working.They have their
experience at another job and can communicate on any difficulties they are
having in finding information at the new place.
KM by stealth –
if management doesn’t like KM – do it anyway, just don’t call it KM.
Managers lose sight of the grass roots after about two
years.Many times good workers become
managers because they know how a department works.They know what it takes to run things
well.But as they focus more on
administrative duties, they begin to lose sight of the work.
KM Culture –
there is not always enough Time, Thought or Reflection to implement KM.
People cycle through the organization faster and
faster.It is harder to keep track of
what KM efforts have been made before and what is in place and/or working and
Often KM technology is rolled out – but we forget that human
oversight and interaction is needed.We
often forget to train people on how to use the technology and think that the
technology will just do the work of KM.
Human oversight and intervention is IMPORTANT!
Be Agile – add value
to the KM process every day or every week.Work toward accomplishing the KM solution for the organization
How do we get buy-in?
Listen – eavesdrop!
Where are people suffering?Where is the pain?What is
keeping the boss awake at night?
Build the KM strategy around what is worrying the boss.If you can find a solution to her/his
concerns, you will get buy-in at the top.
Ask the following questions to people in your organization and
listen to their answers.You will learn
Tell me about your day – what does your department do?
Tell me about your research?What are you working on?
What’s the buzz in your field these days?
Facts and Findings:
When preparing a report on the Knowledge Audit there are
Facts and findings – the current state of things – just the
Pointers – this prepares them to think about and get ready
to hear solutions.But don’t include the
solutions in the report.If you do, they
will skip to the solutions and explain away why they cannot afford to implement
Solutions – find out where the organization is in pain – and
tailor the solutions to ease that.
Notes from a presentation by Siva Vaidhyanathan, Robertson Professor in Media Studies, University of Virginia at the 2014 FEDLINK Spring
Exposition at the
Library of Congress,
Montpelier Room on
May 14, 2014.
Libraries have done so well that they are taken for
granted.They become invisible – like an
offensive line in football.You only
notice when it doesn’t do its job.
Google is 17 years old.In that time it has changed our expectation of how companies should
operate and on the availability of information.Google is pervasive and we have become dependent.
Right to be forgotten
What about the recent European Court decision that people
can remove information about themselves from the public record.
The European case involved a Spanish man who at one time
owed a large debt.He repaid the debt –
but anyone searching his name on Google finds a page about the debt – but not
the information that the debt was repaid long ago.
In the days before the Internet anyone doing research on
this man would have to go to a local library, courthouse or records office and
search through records and likely learn that he had repaid a debt that he owed
at one time.This kind of searching
takes time and costs money.In the age
of Google it is cheap and easy – but it fails to provide the context of the
information.Yes – there was a debt –
THAT WAS REPAID!
Following the European Court decision, the New York Times
opined that this was an attack on the free press.But we had a free press before Google – why
does this threaten the press?
Another reaction to the court decision is the sense that if
we cannot find something on Google, then it doesn’t exist.
Facebook has changed the way we connect socially with
others.In the past one managed one’s
circles of friends and would selectively share personal information.Our co-workers would know some information;
acquaintances we meet at conferences would know some, perhaps not the same information.Our family would have other information – but
our siblings might know things that our parents did not know.
Facebook scrambles those circles – so that everyone is
suddenly on the same level of knowing the same information about us and our
associations.Unless we learn to control
our Facebook privacy settings.
Google scrambles our ability to control our reputation.The links that point to us are skewed by the
weight given to some websites.Some news
sources are given more significance than other sites.For example, Huffington Post articles seem to
stay at the top of the search results.
NSA has had a partnership with Google and Facebook, but we
only recently learned that NSA has gotten even more access to our personal
information at these sites than even the administrators realized.
The mission statement is not – “Don’t be evil.”
It is To organize the
world’s information and make it universally accessible.
When Google started in 1988 – that was ambitious – so much
material was being added to the Internet on a daily basis.Yahoo approached the organization with people
to do the sorting and categories to help.
Google folks were in university and applied for a National
Science Foundation grant for library research – and they developed the
algorithm to sort and organize the web sites.
Organizing is a job of discernment, judgment and
training.It needs training and
This is the hubris of Google – to think that they can
organize the world’s information.Not
all of the world’s information is on the Internet – and they still cannot make
it universally accessible.
Libraries have the skill and the ability to provide access
to their collections – and they have better metadata!
But this was part of their purpose in launching GoogleBooks,
GoogleScholar and even taking on YouTube.
GoogleBooks – was a deal with Harvard University, Stanford,
New York Public Library, the Bodleian Library and a few others that gave
Google, a six-year old start-up company, the access to hundreds of years of
acquisitions and materials with the purpose of digitizing and putting on the
Internet – without any plan for copyright and license agreements.
But these projects are losing money for Google.
More about Google
Google is a benevolent dictator.In the early days of the Internet porn sites
came up pretty regularly in Internet searches.Now Google downgrades the ranking of porn sites – the sites are still
there – just not on the first page.
Personalization and localization are great for shopping and
for business, but they are not very good for learning – when we are trying to
research some principle or standard and it isn’t tied to something within our
What is missing is the learning and the context of
information that comes from doing real research.Algorithms favor the interests of developers.
Popularity of sites plays a role in search retrieval on
Google.The more popular sites come up
first.This is disastrous when you are
searching for health information.Search
on vaccination and you get a lot of sites by vaccine-bashers and Huffington
Post articles.That is a subject area
where brand names should matter – Centers for Disease Control or WebMD etc.
What is the goal?
Google has already won the battle of the search
engines.So far they haven’t won the
battle of the operating systems of the Web or of Mobile devices.The goal is become the operating system for life
– when our appliances and our cars and our clothes are all connected to the
What is the long game?On the open Web, Google wins over Facebook.If you spend your time on Facebook – then
The big players are Apple, Microsoft, Google and
Facebook.Who will win when data is
flowing through our lives?Who will we trust
to manage all of that?Who will be the
operating system of our lives?
Here is the presentation I gave at the National Press Club, Washington, DC this morning. The was Government Libraries event sponsored by Lexis/Nexis and moderated by Marie Kaddell.
Other presenters were Samir Goswami, Director, Government Professional Solutions, Lexis/Nexis, and an expert on human trafficking, and Kris Vajs, Chief Librarian at the US Federal Reserve Board of Governors Research Library.
Strong Roots, New Branches – how I grew to become a librarian
Thank you, Marie, for inviting me here today.I have come to this event almost every year
and I have gained much from the speakers.Marie asked me to share the story of my career as a librarian.I hope that you will find it encouraging and find
something from own experience to aid yours.
Building on the theme for today – I think of trees with
strong roots and new branches. So I will
use the analogy of the life of a tree as my framework.
While growing up I remember a poster in my sister’s bedroom.Bloom
where you’re planted.Posters were
the tweets of the 1960’s.
Trees grow everywhere: Forests, Groves & Orchards, Homes
& Neighborhoods, Tree boxes, Bonsai pots and in cracks in the sidewalk.They grow naturally, or planned by
landscapers, arborists, homeowners, farmers and bonsai masters.Some grow to be majestic oaks or redwoods
while others remain small.Some die as
seedlings while others live to be hundreds of years old.
I often say that I fell into being a librarian.After college, with no real career plan, my
godmother steered me toward federal service.She had made a career working in human resources and thought that would
be a good path for me as well.
This was back in the day – before personal computers and
smartphones – and I went to OPM a few blocks west of here to take the
Clerk/Typist exam.The first job was
with the FDIC and I started my library career by weighing, opening and sorting
the mail.I checked in serials using a
Kardex system.I shelved, I weeded, I
did loose-leaf filing and I filed cards in the card catalog. I replaced pocket
parts and even learned how to handle Shepard’s Citations volumes.Not use them – that wouldn’t come for another
15 years, but I figured out what to keep and what to toss.
I left that job to become a Personnel Clerk/Typist at the VA
Medical Center in Washington, DC.It
seemed to have more chance of advancement.It was an interesting experience and I learned a lot about HR rules and
benefits.But one day, a friend from my FDIC
days, told me that they were looking for a cataloger.This was not a position that required an MLS.
I took that job and since then I have always worked in
Growing and nurturing
But I needed library skills to go along with this job.I got OCLC training at FEDLINK and I took a
cataloging course with Dr. David Battey.If any of you had the privilege of knowing him or taking a course from
him – you are lucky.He was a brilliant
man and one of the first librarians I ever met who wore his quirkiness with
Luck had much to do with my career – that and some talent to
learn.I took on the cataloging, and
other duties as assigned.I learned how
to take care of the library system that the FDIC had at the time.I took over running the back-ups.I dismantled and rebuilt system furniture.
I had a good boss and good directors for the library.After I had been on the job for a year or so
– and figured I knew everything – I got a new boss who helped to give me a new
attitude in my job.She helped me to see
the bigger picture of how my job fit in with the structure of the library and
the agency and why it was important.She
was a dedicated civil servant who took her responsibilities seriously.She was also fair-minded and encouraging to
Then the Internet happened and life as we knew it changed
In this case I was again lucky.I learned about gopher sites and ftp and
html.I learned about the reality of
electronic resources.And that interest
prompted me to get my MLS.
Again, I was lucky – my agency helped pay for my
degree.I attended the University of
Maryland, College of Information Studies.After I finished there were some staff shifts and I moved into a
Over the next few years I made the most that I could from professional
development, training classes and attending conferences and workshops.I took advantage of DC-SLA to network with
other librarians in the area.From the
start I would write up my notes from attending conferences and share them with
It was during this time that Blogs and then Twitter came
into vogue.A colleague was testing a site
for supporting library services and asked me if I would consider starting a
blog.I did and used it to post my
write-ups on conference and workshop sessions.I had some following – not a lot.
I talked to some speakers who were successful bloggers.One gave me the advice, if you don’t have anything special to say- don’t blog.I applied that same notion to my tweets.I mostly tweet from conference sessions I am
attending or to promote a new blog entry.
I also provided weekly updates on what I was doing.This helped me to mark my successes and achievements.I worked on projects in the library but also
volunteered for programs at my agency as a way to promote the library.
While it is important to blossom and reach out on the job,
it is also important to have hobbies and interests outside of work.Face it, sometimes work can be a drag.I find comfort in music.For many years I sang with a choral group and
for the past 14 years I have played trombone with a community band – DC’sDifferent Drummers.I also enjoy helping
my husband work in the yard.There are many
ways to re-create oneself.
Storms and drought
Sometimes we face difficulties on the job: down-sizing,
budget cuts, or difficult colleagues.And personal life presents challenges: illness, finances, care for
children, parents, partner or spouse. These are times when we need to learn to
be resilient and be strong.
A challenge in one job led me to take a look at my health –
and that took me on a journey of its own and a successful weight loss.
Calling to mind the analogy of a tree – you have to bend
during the storm in order to survive.If
you become rigid – you can break or topple.And having had two trees come down at my home – you want to avoid that!
We all make mistakes.Yes, it is embarrassing. What is important is to learn from our
mistakes.I have had some setbacks, just
like many others – but I have tried to be optimistic, improve myself and move
The reason that we laugh at clowns is because they do the
things that we do – they trip and fall – but they do it in the spotlight of the
center ring.And then they laugh at
Transplanting trees is a tricky endeavor.You have to pick the right time so the tree
can survive the move.As librarians we
have to be ready to learn new skills so we are ready for our next move.
I have worked in Technical Services, Electronic Resources,
Reference and Acquisitions.I have
trained contractors in using library systems.I have built databases and webpages.I have trained agency staff on library services and Internet
searching.I realized that I have had
some experience in most areas of librarianship.
Most of my library career was with banking agencies.I started out with the FDIC.Then I went to the Comptroller of the
Currency and then to the Federal Reserve Board Research Library.
From there I worked a couple of contract positions – one at
the National Agricultural Library and another in the private sector for a
company called LMI that does consulting work with the Department of Defense and
some other agencies.
The breadth of this experience, the way I marketed it and no
small amount of luck or providence landed me in my current position with the USArmy Corps of Engineers.It is perhaps
the coolest job title I could have ever imagined – Command Librarian.
Branching out &
Now I am in a position where I need to branch out and learn
from my colleagues as well as support them.It is my role to provide guidance to the USACE Library Program.We have 21 district libraries, 3 research
libraries and two other library sites.Fortunately I am not their supervisor, but I have visited each site and
try to find ways to help them.
Looking ahead, I am reaching out to other groups and
divisions at my agency to see how the library can provide better support.I will also reach out to those districts that
no longer have libraries and learn what help they need.
And it is my turn to mentor and help others.One day I got a phone call from a training
officer in our Sacramento District.She
had an employee who was a clerk and was interested in going to library
school.Over the next several months we
traded emails and chatted as she embarked on her training and transition to
becoming a librarian.
I have also been active with DC/SLA and the EmploymentPortal.Some of us on that team have met
with library students and reviewed resumes.
We should regularly look at our careers and what we are
doing and cut away the dead wood.This
can be as simple as reviewing our resumes and removing irrelevant skills and
training.It can also mean letting go of
some of the negatives in our lives, letting go of bad will and grudges.Sometimes this is easy – sometimes it
requires counseling.Don’t be afraid of
Old trees and by-products
What can be said about old trees?They give shade & comfort.They beautify the landscape.Their branches provide nests for birds and
homes for squirrels.Their roots help to
give stability to the land.Their wood
can be used to make homes, doors, desks, tables and chairs.
They can be milled into pulp to make paper for printing of
books, currency and much else.What we
do as librarians and information professionals helps our agencies accomplish
good for the people of America.
I think of the librarians I have known throughout my
career.Teachers in library school who
were demanding and challenged me.Another
librarian earned a Master of Divinity and retired early, but applied her skills
to helping at a theological library.She
went on to lead others on pilgrimages in Benedictine spirituality.People like Sharon Lenius who, though
retired, still support other government and military librarians.
We don’t have to end up on the wood pile.
I leave you with something a manager said to me on my first
day in a job waiting tables. The worst
thing that we can do to you is to fire you.You’ve looked for a job before and you can do it again.The phrasing struck me as odd – but I took it
to mean – if you’re not happy with what you are doing then look for someplace
where you can be happy.
Another speaker at the 2014 FEDLINK Spring
Exposition at the
Library of Congress was Rob C. Thomas, Deputy CIO, FEMA. Here's a summary of his remarks.
Talk about Big Data often misses the essential connection
between those seeking knowledge and the information.The human factor is the key.Librarians and information professionals make
Every federal agency has an obligation to leverage
information.We need to leverage
information to serve the core mission of the agency.
Information is a strategic asset.It is dynamic and it needs to remain agile.
Strategies evolve to meet the changing environment.
We must collaborate with others and increase participation and engage the whole community to leverage and make use of the data.
We need to have participation by all stake-holders.Collaborate to improve effectiveness across the agency.
Transparency is needed to promote accountability.
Release information on a regular, on-going basis.
The culture of an agency is the source of its action or its
Obtaining the knowledge needed will make the difference.
If the Information Culture in an agency isn’t fed and grown,
it will stifle.
Information that is shared is the ripple in the pond.It will stir the waters and help make things
It's the action, not
the fruit of the action, that's important. You have to do the right thing. It
may not be in your power, may not be in your time, that there'll be any fruit.
But that doesn't mean you stop doing the right thing. You may never know what
results come from your action. But if you do nothing, there will be no result.– Mahatma Gandhi (citation needed.)
It has been a full week. On May 15, I attended FOSE at the
Washington Convention Center in
Washington, DC. The only session I was able to get to was the panel on Women Leaders in Technology.
Panelists: Anne Altman, General Manager, US Federal and
Government Industries, IBM Corporation; Teresa Carlson, Vice President
Worldwide Public Sector, Amazon Web Services; Renee Macklin (Invited), Chief
Information Officer and Chief Privacy Officer, SBA; Debora Plunkett, Director
of the Information Assurance Directorate, NSA; Barbara Rivera, President/GM,
Business, Experian; Lisa Schlosser, Deputy Associate Administrator, Office of
E-Government and Information Technology, OMB
45% of the federal workforce is over the age of 50.A lot of people will be retiring in the next
several years.Can we capture that
Panelists said that mentoring was the key to encouraging
young people to work in the federal government.Leaders and managers need to learn how to work with younger workers who
have a different approach to work and tackling projects.
Thoughts - This is a challenge.Young people have ideas and energy but often
their ideas are shot down by older, longer-serving workers.Many agencies are Microsoft shops and because
of IT security concerns, they are aren’t flexible or open to Open Source
software and other systems.Many Gen-X,
Gen-Y and Millennials grew up using Apple products in their schools.They can work with Microsoft – but often
prefer the Apple systems.
It is pervasive and business and government is making use of
it.Amazon runs all product launches
through social media.This saves money
that can be put back into services and products.They are also using social media to
communicate within their organization.
Government agencies are issuing alerts and news releases and
other updates via social media.
Thoughts – Social media is perfect for business.Consumers interested in products are always
on the lookout for news about the products that they like.Government cannot rely solely on social
media.Not everyone uses social media or
is necessarily following every agency.News services track social media, but they have to confirm before they
broadcast and not everyone is tuned into news media (television, online or
Women in the IT World
The moderator asked about the experience of being a woman in
the IT/Computer Science world.Three of the
panelists are also women of color.
Debora Plunkett of NSA said that she was given the advice to
know that you belong.Learn to be okay with being the one and only. Conduct yourself with
honesty, integrity and transparency.Be
happy about what you do.
Other women spoke of the influence of a particular teacher
or mentor.They went on to suggest that
we conduct outreach to STEM students in high school and college – but maybe we
should focus on elementary school to get women and minorities interested in careers
You own your career.Your boss is not responsible for helping you to move ahead – it is your
responsibility.If you aren’t happy
where you are, go to where you can be happy.
Teresa Carlson said that we should build our EQ as well as
our IQ.Our EQ is our emotional
quotient.Learn to handle changes within
the workplace.Be resilient.
The Aha Moment
One of the speakers mentioned that her Aha Moment was when
she realized that she could create a place for herself by finding a need and
filling it.When we encounter a hole we
have options: walk around the hole, jump over it, turn around, or fill the
hole.If we find a way to fill the hole
in our organization, we show that we are part of the team and we can meet a
need – provide something that was lacking.