And so to "Thing 21". This was great fun - I've not had much previous experience of podcasts, but fear I may become hooked!
First stop - looking at the BBC's offerings...listening to Cumbrian Ospreys and Mike Harding talking about the Cambridge Folk Fest on his Folk and Acoustic podcast. Next - onto more library related podcasts. These seemed to be variable in quality, and one felt that they had not always thought through how to present them, or listened to them with the ear of a novice library user. The first library tour podcast I listened to was confusing - the layout of the webpage was not obvious, and the podcast I felt went into too much detail so that I quickly found myself "switching off" Goldsmith's tour on the other hand was clear and to the point, the webpage was easily navigable, and yes I could imagine walking round the library listening to it (although preferably when it was fairly empty ;) I listened briefly to the JISC and CILIP podcasts. These were not really ones to dip into, but I could imagine listening to them when I needed the information.
Some of the podcasts were easier to listen to than others - one discussion I listened to didn't work for me because the second person was not adding anything, and it would have worked just as well as a monologue. Another seemed much more like a genuine discussion and was therefore much easier to listen to. I also found myself getting irritated when someone introduced another speaker, and then the second speaker also introduced himself! At least one benefit of listening to a variety of library related podcasts is that I will know what to avoid if I ever make one myself.
More light relief followed when looking at the suggested YouTube videos, The Ninja Librarian and A Plagiarism Adventure were particularly good fun (perhaps we should include the Ninja librarian in our induction sessions?!) It became apparent that one did not need to make them over complicated to be effective. I particularly liked the "silent movies" style used in the Goggle Vision and Social Science Library Oxford Library Tour videos.
Would we consider making podcasts or YouTube videos for the library? Making a podcast seems feasible, but one should bear in mind that they need to be well planned and presented. To make a successful video I think requires fairly outgoing personalities, (as well as technical expertise). To make a bad video would be worse than not having one at all. Would it be worth it? I can see that for some people (myself included), being shown how to do something would have more impact than just being told. Therefore I can see their place, as a teaching tool or as an addition to a library tour for example. However, given these requirements I think it will be a while yet before we attempt either.
Now if you'll excuse me... I'm just off for a spot of Croquet... (Thanks for the link "Girl in the Moon")