uu.seUppsala University Publications
Change search
ReferencesLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Varken shorts eller kostym: En studie av hur fyra folkbibliotek interagerar med sina användare på Facebook.
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Arts, Department of ALM.
2012 (Swedish)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesisAlternative title
Neither Shorts, Nor Suits : A Study of how Four Public Libraries Interact with their Users on Facebook. (English)
Abstract [en]

The purpose of this thesis has been to examine how four public libraries interact with their patrons on Facebook. The thesis strives to investigate which methods of interaction that seems to generate the most positive response from the patrons. Emphases has been placed on how the libraries communicate with their patrons, in terms of language use, update frequency and response to patron comments. The theoretical foundation of this paper has been inspired by Norman Fairclough, and his theories regarding how discourse not only reproduces social and cultural  practices, but also has the power to change them. By becoming aware of the language that we utilise, and what implications it can have, we can make active choices regarding which reality we want to (re)produce.

Four public libraries in the Stockholm area were selected, and their Facebook pages were studied for five months, between November 2011 and April 2012. Interviews were conducted with one librarian from each library. The interviews showed that the librarians recognised the potential difficulties in finding a balance between the language commonly used in the library community, and the language specific to social media. They were also sensitive to the fact that Facebook-active librarians needed to be able to express themselves rather freely, and use a somewhat more relaxed language than they did in other library-related contexts.

My findings indicate that a successful Facebook presence is dependent on how much time and effort the library has the possibility to invest, considering that social media requires frequent, varied and engaging updates. The dialogue between libraries and patrons is benefited when the libraries respond to comments and questions as swiftly as possible, ideally within a couple of hours.

My research suggests that language constitutes a key element when libraries and patrons interact on Facebook. While engaging in what Fairclough refers to as critical awareness of language, libraries can make active choices regarding what level of personality, and what tone of professional expertise, they want to deploy when they address their patrons, and consequently how they want the library to be perceived. This can contribute to regulating the power imbalance between the libraries and their patrons. By signing Facebook posts with their real names, responding swiftly and attentively to the patrons’ comments, and finding a balance between a more conventional library discourse and a more relaxed one, the libraries can consciously strive to alter the image of the library as an anonymous, rather formal, distanced institution.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2012. , 85 p.
Uppsatser inom biblioteks- & informationsvetenskap, ISSN 1650-4267 ; 560
Keyword [en]
Facebook, Social Media, Library 2.0, Public Libraries
Keyword [sv]
Facebook, sociala medier, Bibliotek 2.0, folkbibliotek
National Category
Other Humanities not elsewhere specified
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-175479Local ID: 560OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-175479DiVA: diva2:531692
Subject / course
Library and Information Science
Educational program
Master Programme in ALM
Humanities, Theology
Available from: 2012-06-14 Created: 2012-06-07 Last updated: 2012-12-04Bibliographically approved

Open Access in DiVA

No full text

By organisation
Department of ALM
Other Humanities not elsewhere specified

Search outside of DiVA

GoogleGoogle Scholar
The number of downloads is the sum of all downloads of full texts. It may include eg previous versions that are now no longer available

Total: 293 hits
ReferencesLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link