Tuesday, May 12, 2009

State Library Twitter Account Explained

Question: Is your Twitter account at twitter.com/akstatelibrary real? What kinds of things do you post? How do you decide whom to follow?

Answer: The akstatelibrary account is ours.


Most of our tweets are automatically posted from our RSS feeds. You can tell these tweets apart from any spontaneous comments we make because they have a prefix. Here are the types of automated tweets you will see on our account:

Bookmark: - The Alaska State Library Information Services Section has a delicious account where we put our reference bookmarks. Tweets with this preface denote items we've bookmarked. Bookmarking does not mean we endorse the site, only that we have found it useful in answering reference questions.

For Alaskans Only: - Thanks to the Digital Pipeline, we have been able to set up an alert in a database with thousands of journals for articles whose main topic is Alaska. Tweets with this prefix link to an Alaska-themed journal article. With our vendor license, these articles may be viewed by any Alaskan, but not by people from outside the state.

Have you seen?: The Alaska State Library Historical Collections maintains a blog of Mystery Photos that they have requested help in identifying. The link in these tweets will take you to the photo. - UPDATE 5/25/2011. This blog has ceased.

New@ASL: - This indicates a new item added to our catalog. The link will take to you the catalog record for the title. If you don't live in Juneau, most of these items will be available to you through Interlibrary Loan. Just ask at your local library.

We Answered: - This is posted from the blog you are reading - Since You Asked. The hyperlink in the tweet takes you to the full answered question.

We Liked: - These Tweets come from our Staff Picks list on WorldCat.org. These are books that at least one of the library staff members found interesting.

In addition to these automated ways of feeding our Twitter account, we will occasionally post bits of news about the Division of Libraries, Archives and Museums like upcoming trainings. We may also post informational items about hot topics, like Mt. Redoubt or the recent H1N1 influenza outbreak.

We monitor direct messages (DM's) daily and look for @akstatelibrary a few times a week.


We follow people and institutions we become aware of who meet one of these criteria:

  • An Alaska State Agency (for example: Public Health Nursing)

  • An Alaskan elected official (for example: Governor Parnell, Senator Murkowski)

  • Alaskan libraries, archives & museums (for example: Egan Library)

  • Traditional media outlets (i.e. radio, TV, newspaper outlets)

  • Other state libraries and cultural institutions of national interest
If you've got questions our comments about our twitter feed, please either leave a comment here, or e-mail asl@alaska.gov.

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