Public Libraries using IM

Lately, I’ve been researching public libraries providing reference services via IM (using AOL, ichat, MSN, Yahoo, etc.). There aren’t public libraries in my region offering this service and I was pleasantly surprised when I found out that there are many, many PLs into this type of IM! The future has arrived 🙂  However, I would like to know which of those PLs provide reference services via IM in other languages than English.

Many people are posting good and detailed information on blogs about this topic; I am not going to reinvent the wheel but to share few links:

IM me – Instant message controversial? nb.  good article!

Online Reference – wiki

Librarians who IM – best practices wiki

I am a librarian – upcoming book on librarians who IM

Few PLs that IM:

Arlington PL, VA http://www.arlingtonva.us/departments/Libraries/ref/IQuery.aspx

Alexandria PL, Indiana http://www.apl.lib.in.us/im.html

St Charles PL, Illinois http://www.st-charles.lib.il.us/247ref/im_us.htm

Homer Township PL, Illinois http://www.homerlibrary.org/ask.asp

Now, I do have a question for public libraries with this type of IM: what are the legal implications for the libraries, customers, staff— if any? Comments will be gratefully appreciated 🙂

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