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Libraries in Second Life: Linking Collections, Clients, and Communities in a Virtual World

Libraries in Second Life: Linking Collections, Clients, and Communities in a Virtual World The multi-user virtual environment Second Life has drawn attention from many librarians who established virtual libraries and information spaces there. Even as interest in Second Life diminishes, it is worthwhile to look at how libraries in Second Life were established and what models they followed. This study examines the purposes, users, collections, and community integration of Second Life libraries. Researchers identified over 75 libraries in Second Life through the professional literature and search results within Second Life. Using this sample, they identified seven general categories of libraries and discuss examples of each. Some Second Life library spaces help to set a scene and contribute to the ethos of a larger space. Other Second Life libraries connect physical libraries with virtual communities. Still others serve communities that exist only in virtual spaces, supporting common interests or role-playing scenarios. Finally, some Second Life libraries expand understandings of what a virtual library might be, whether through imaginative architecture or unusual collections. Second Life libraries offer collections of resources tailored to the needs of individual communities and make them available in different formats. They also offer social and educational programs, much as physical libraries do. Whatever the future of Second Life, the libraries that have been established there raise important questions for future virtual library work. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal Of Web Librarianship Taylor & Francis

Libraries in Second Life: Linking Collections, Clients, and Communities in a Virtual World

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References (45)

Publisher
Taylor & Francis
Copyright
Copyright Taylor & Francis Group, LLC
ISSN
1932-2917
eISSN
1932-2909
DOI
10.1080/19322909.2013.780883
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

The multi-user virtual environment Second Life has drawn attention from many librarians who established virtual libraries and information spaces there. Even as interest in Second Life diminishes, it is worthwhile to look at how libraries in Second Life were established and what models they followed. This study examines the purposes, users, collections, and community integration of Second Life libraries. Researchers identified over 75 libraries in Second Life through the professional literature and search results within Second Life. Using this sample, they identified seven general categories of libraries and discuss examples of each. Some Second Life library spaces help to set a scene and contribute to the ethos of a larger space. Other Second Life libraries connect physical libraries with virtual communities. Still others serve communities that exist only in virtual spaces, supporting common interests or role-playing scenarios. Finally, some Second Life libraries expand understandings of what a virtual library might be, whether through imaginative architecture or unusual collections. Second Life libraries offer collections of resources tailored to the needs of individual communities and make them available in different formats. They also offer social and educational programs, much as physical libraries do. Whatever the future of Second Life, the libraries that have been established there raise important questions for future virtual library work.

Journal

Journal Of Web LibrarianshipTaylor & Francis

Published: Apr 1, 2013

Keywords: Second Life; library; virtual world; multi-user virtual environment; collections; users; digital library

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