American professional librarian, Rebecca McDuff, deplored the lack of utilization of information technology (IT) in libraries in Indonesia, whereas some communities in Indonesia have been very familiar with the internet usage especially for social networks such as Facebook or Twitter. She said that library resources in Indonesia have been quite nice but unfortunately there are often lacks of visitors. One of the reasons is the lack of reading culture and the complexity in searching literature searching.
It was mentioned by Rebecca when she introduced the system of Library 2.0 which is the concept of digital interactive campus library at the University of Muhammadiyah Malang (UMM), Wednesday (12/8). Rebecca is the Regional Information Resource Officer, U.S. Embassy in Jakarta. She presented in American Corner of UMM in order to share knowledge and experience in managing library with 52 librarians of universities, elementary schools, junior high schools and senior high schools of Malang and Blitar.
Progress in managing library, she said, should follow the progress of IT. If the first one could only use paper and printed objects, then there was a floppy disk and compact disc, now it has been more interactive because there is internet. So, the literature data can be exchanged so quickly on demand.
"The excellence of Library 2.0 among others is as a concept or system to facilitate the process of borrowing a book by the user. The concept advantages are more interactive, collaborative, and dynamic with more participants and multi-directions," explained Rebecca.
Communications inter and intra librarians with library users, she added, should be more intense and should not be limited by distance and time. Therefore, librarians can use social networking or web blog to serve either a search of books or just a talk. They can use Facebook or Twitter as the most popular and easy to use mediums besides sms and other chatting mediums.
Participants from UIN and University of Gajayana Malang doubted the accuracy of the use of this system for library users on their campus because most of the old system is still retained and they do not have a high technology culture.
The same complaint was also felt by librarian from Sholahudin Islamic High School who thought the technology is only appropriate for university libraries. University students have been already familiar with internet, while there are only some of students of high school who have often used it. So, the implementation of the system was still considered hard for the elementary schools and high schools.
Answering that question, Rebecca invited to be more optimistic because it is very easy to adjust, but it must be started from the librarians themselves who should be IT literate.
Assistant of the Rector for International Cooperation of UMM, Soeparto, said UMM has long been using Digital Library technology. UMM Library connects with major libraries in Indonesia, even internationally. The availability of international electronic journal has been quite a lot, but it was admitted to be interactively underutilized. "Hopefully with this introduction, we all be able to optimize the libraries better," Soeparto hoped. (t_alf)
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