Western History & Genealogy Blog

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At DPL and WHG, the future is now

Dreams of the library of the future!

Have you ever dreamed that libraries would one day be a place where people will not only check out items from the collection but also add to it? A library that wasn't confined to the rules of publishers? That future may be closer to than you think!

The Creating Your Communities (CYC) project, being developed within the Western History/Genealogy department, is trailblazing a virtual path for DPL's future by enabling users to add content and interact on the CYC site. The project is based on the concept of Participatory Archives and will encourage community participation and contributions and democratize the content the users and community contribute.

It's exciting to think about the potential of the project and what it means for the Denver Public Library. Is it possible for libraries to become publishers? Will librarians become Cultural Curators and will we refer to our catalogs as Cultural Databases?

Someday, will we as library users use library tools to remix personal photos, stories, videos, songs, books, films, histories, all those things that define us as individuals (and community groups) and remix, share, comment, tag, via the Library? And have those personal items archived and cataloged for as long as there are libraries to preserve it?

This all leads to a conversation that libraries must have about how these digital tools (like the CYC site) achieve the larger goal of the community and the individuals in it. Are these tools solving a problem and representing the community? The CYC team and the library's Web development team consider this question seriously before any digital project is started.

How do you think user participation and contributions will change the library game?

Keep a close watch on the CYC project. Great things are coming your way in the very near future!

Written by LaurieKM, Posted by JamesR

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