Friday, September 29, 2006

 

Most reliable search tool could be your librarian

I read about this article on Library Stuff. It is written by CNet, a mainstream tech website. It does a nice job of explaining why Search Engines are not the total solution to patron's informational needs. I love this quote.

"There's a problem with information illiteracy among people. People find information online and don't question whether it's valid or not," said Chris Sherman, executive editor of industry blog site SearchEngineWatch.com. "I think that's where librarians are extremely important. They are trained to evaluate the quality of the information."

I taught several Internet courses over the last eighteen months at Texas Woman's University. These students were in PHD courses and many did not think to question information found on the web. I am sure my students are a good sampling of the general public. If public libraries adopt any role in the community, it should be to teach patrons about information literacy. How do you find the information online and how do you judge its credibility? If you are not offering classes like this, you should be.

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