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Crowdsourcing and social engagement: potential, power and freedom for libraries and users.

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  • Lc. Internet
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  • Jz. None Of These
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  • Bz. None Of These
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The definition and purpose of crowdsourcing and social engagement with users is discussed with particular reference to the Australian Newspapers service, FamilySearch, Wikipedia, the Distributed Proofreaders, Galaxy Zoo and The Guardian MP’s Expenses Scandal These services have harnessed thousands of digital volunteers who transcribe, create, enhance and correct text, images and archives. The successful strategies which motivated users to help, engage, and develop the outcomes will be examined. How can the lessons learnt be applied more broadly across the library and archive sector and what is the future potential? What are useful tips for crowdsourcing? Users no longer expect to be passive receivers of information and want to engage with data, each other and non-profit making organisations to help achieve what may seem to be impossible goals and targets. If libraries want to stay relevant and valued, offer high quality data and continue to have a significant social impact they must develop active engagement strategies and harness crowdsourcing techniques and partnerships to enhance their services. Can libraries respond to the shift in power and control of information and dare to give users something greater than power – freedom?

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