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Library Quarterly Report FY17 Q1: July - September 2016


Library Launches Connections: A New E-Newsletter

Connections, the new library e-newsletter

Since March 2016, the library has been testing a new “system-wide blog” that comes with the library’s LibGuides CMS system from vendor Springshare. For years the library has sought a customer-initiated news source to help us share the updates, news and library-related events with patrons and friends.

The site, accessible at: http://library.virginiadot.org/connections, is called “Connections,” the new "Library E-Newsletter” though technically it is a blog. Blog is short for “Weblog” a Web 2.0 technology that has been around for more than a decade and is roughly equivalent to an online log or journal that users can subscribe to via e-mail. 

We hope to use Connections to publish 1 to 4 new posts a month (no more than 1 per week), and each post will be focused on topics of interest to known library users, describing a new feature or development in 150-250 words as well as including
images and links to internal and external resources. Connections has two parts, a front end and a back end. Patrons see the front end features and library staff use the back end to manage posts.


Front End Features:

  • Blog posts are listed in reverse chronological order (the most recent one is listed first).
  • Recent posts appear as hypertext links at the top of the page.
  • Anyone with an e-mail address can self-register to receive automated “alerts” of new posts.
  • The blog includes an “archive” showing older blog posts by month.

Back End Features:

  • The back end allows staff to use a rich text editor to design posts and include images and links.
  • Staff can “schedule” a post (write a post today and have it “publish” itself at an exact day/time in the future).
  • Each post comes with a “friendly URL.” Example: http://library.virginiadot.org/blog/national-bicycle-month
     

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