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Confessions of a Lurker

Posted on 14 January 2010 at 2:53 pm in Musings.

Apparently today is “delurk” day in the blogosphere, as lurking readers are encouraged to actually comment on their favorite blogs that they normally read in secrecy. I admit to being guilty of lurking on a number of blogs; either I have nothing to add or say in reply, or I’m shy because I don’t know the blogger personally and feel out of place commenting, or it’s a really popular blog and I see no point in adding my two cents when there are hundreds of other comments. I should know better — I certainly appreciate the small handful of comments I get here and on my feed on facebook, and I’d bet the blogs I read (particularly the “smaller” ones) would in turn appreciate the attention themselves.

So I thought I’d highlight a handful of my favorite blogs to lurk, some widely read, others not. Don’t be offended if your blog didn’t make my list…this is just a small sampling from my Reader, and I probably don’t consider myself a lurker on yours!

Blogs by librarians:

  • Carolyn the Librarian: This blog is written by a friend and former classmate of mine. She’s an academic reference librarian and one of the most organized, cogent and sharp colleagues I’ve had. Her blog is serious-minded, as she is, focusing on evaluating the library services she takes part in, and analyzing changing trends in academic librarianship. I read it regularly (or as regularly as she posts), and her blog has always featured in my “friends” blogroll at left, but I’ve only commented a couple times.
  • Silversprite: This blog is authored by John Kirriemuir, a library consultant who resides in the Outer Hebrides of Scotland (an area of the world recently featured in an evocative National Geographic piece). He travels extensively and blogs about the libraries and library services he witnesses in his journeys.
  • The Cataloguing Librarian: I’m not a cataloger, but I might be some day – it’s hard to know what direction my career might take. I have taken courses in the subject and done some archival cataloging during my recent internship, so I know the basics. Reading Laurel Tarulli’s blog, a frequently published Canadian cataloging librarian, keeps me up on many of the bigger questions in cataloging, thus helping me remain informed should I find cataloging a part of my job duties some day. Plus, she writes well and keeps what might be a dry subject pretty interesting. I think I’ve commented once.
  • Librarian in Black: Sarah Houghton-Jan’s blog on library web services is one of the gold standards on the subject — widely read, influential, and positive about the possibilities in library services. Reading Librarian in Black is a great way to stay informed about the technological possibilities out there (along with the occasional horror story).
  • The Travelin’ Librarian: This interesting blog is a hodgepodge mix of professional observation, personal musings and interesting links (not unlike my own, but generally better written!). The author is veteran librarian Michael Sauers of Lincoln, Nebraska.

Plus a music blog:

  • Dust Sleeve. I love, love, love this music blog, though I’ve only commented on it a couple times. I first found it googling for reviews of a Wolf Parade album (anyone who knows me understands I am a fanatic) but kept reading it due to the well-written reviews, the entertaining song mixes, and links provided by writer Erin Fox. After reading her blog for nearly a year, I can definitely say I trust her taste in music. And unlike some music blogs, she writes without pretension.

Now, I suppose I ought to go out and delurk on each of these blogs by posting some comments…in the meantime, I suggest you check them out!

And of course, I’m always happy to get comments here on The Pinakes. No need to be shy. Perhaps you can tell me your favorite blogs to lurk?