While browsing through the feeds in my Google Reader this afternoon, I noticed this post from the Pew Internet and American Life Project:


News Consumption 2010: Portable, Participatory and Personal | Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project via kwout

I was struck by the simplicity yet power of the three Ps:  portable, participatory, and personal and decided to look for the research report that supports this talk.  In  “Understanding the Participatory New Consumer“,  the authors assert:

In today’s new multi-platform media environment, news is becoming portable, personalized, and participatory.

I think these three principles are relevant to us as librarians as we think about our program goals and how we can better serve our patrons.  Can we say that our library, our content, and our services we offer are portable, participatory, and personal?  What strategies are you and your library using to make your information ecology portable, participatory, and personal?


3 thoughts on “Applying the Three Ps to Libraries

  1. Wow, what a great set of Ps! I really like this, I think it neatly encapsulates where we need to be headed in the industry. There are so many definitions floating around, this one seems to capture what library 2.whatever-we-are-on-next neatly and as close to comprehensively as one could hope from three words only. Let’s push this idea!


  2. Depressingly, aside from being able to request things via the online catalog and have the magical library gnomes find them for me…I really have no idea what most libraries of my acquaintance have done on that front.

    A library that was a revelation for me was Olin College’s, though. Walk in there and there are comfy chairs huddled in little groups around tables — always a table within reach — and the tables have Rubik’s cubes or squishy balls or other things to fidget with or problem-solve absentmindedly, and then white boards, everywhere white boards. I don’t know how much time you’ve spent around science nerds — Olin is an engineering school, hence its student body is not unlike that of my alma mater — but science nerds think by fidgeting with things, and by being absent-minded, and by arguing, and by running to the whiteboard when they need to illustrate (literally!) a point or when an idea gets too big to fit inside their heads. So all of that furniture says, think here.

    My college’s library (now closed) just had stacks and stuff. I hadn’t known it was a place where you could think. I mean, except insofar as it provided a quiet place to do some thinking. But I hadn’t known until I saw Olin’s library that libraries were places that facilitate ideas, not merely by their collection, but by their essence. That they were thinking-places, not just information-places. Does that make sense? A revelation in furniture.


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