International librarianship – video by Jan Holmquist

Hi Friends

I met Kate C. Byrne in Helsinki for IFLA 2012 and I was very proud when she asked me to do a short video about international librarianship. The video is intended to add value to Kates presentation – but I hope you like it too – Please connect with me if you want to explore international librarianship with me….

Circulating Ideas Featuring Jan Holmquist

janholmquist__I am very proud to be the guest on Steve Thomas great podcast Circulating Ideas – A Podcast I think makes a very big difference for learning in libraries and is making libraries better…

Thank you for having me as a guest Steve – and thank you to all who listend and liked – So many shares and positve comments – means the world to me….

Head over to Circulating ideas to hear the show and all the other interesting podcasts Steve has done with inspiring librarians.
Circulating Ideas Featuring Jan Holmquist

Time out of mind

I wrote this about my favorite album for Read Watch Plays topic about re-reading. Can you read an album?

Read Watch Play

Time out of mindFrom the first guitar strums of Love Sick – to the seconds when the voice appears – I get the chills of rereading my favorite album in the world – Time out of mind by Bob Dylan – also it is hard to think of a better title for this months re-read topic – because time should be out of mind when you think about the best of art – music, games, movies or poetry…

The well known story of this album is that Dylan was not satisfied with producer Daniel Lanois sound – I have to disagree on that one, Bob – I absolutely love the sound and the feeling it provides… it is dusty and like the wind turning a bit chill after a warm summer day… and it is a very unique sound too

Sometimes the silence can be like the thunder

Read more: http://www.bobdylan.com/us#ixzz2H3TX73JS

Yet again…

View original post 693 more words

Unglue: Giving books to the world by crowd funding

The most democratic book project I know is about to relaunch – Here is an article I wrote for the German library magazine BUB as member of the Zukunftentwicklers network – With a few corrections because a lot has happened with Unglue.it since the deadline:

Picture credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/freefoto/3239197673/sizes/m/in/photostream/What is crowd funding and what does it mean to unglue?

To unglue a book means that you buy the rights to the book and then pass them on by giving the book to the world for free to read in any e-book format and on any device – without DRM or time restrictions under a creative commons license. But you don’t do it alone. You chirp in a little and so does a lot of other people who think it is important to free the same book. This is called crowd funding. When you crowd fund (and unglue) the project you support has a deadline and the money needed must be raised before the end of this deadline or the project fails. If the money is not raised before the deadline – you don’t loose your money – because the amount you pledge is not drawn from your account unless all the money needed is raised.

The good thing about Unglue.it as I see it is that everyone is a winner. The author gets paid for his work and the world gets unlimited access to the book – What’s not to like about it? I think Unglue.it is the most democratic book project you can imagine.
The first book has already been unglued and is therefore yours too – it is “Oral Literature In Africa” by Ruth H. Finnegan – 278 world citizens participated in unglueing this book raising 7500 dollars – The e-book version is available for download from the Unglue.it website. You can go to Unglue.it to learn more and make your own pledge to give the gift of a book to the world.

Libraries, ebooks and freedom of information

In the current e-book market it is very hard for libraries to purchase and lend out ebooks to the public. This fact is making it darker times for universal access to information for the first time in decades. Lots of titles can’t be offered because the biggest publishers in the US are not working with the libraries there, and in Europe EBLIDA is doing work to get better deals here too. Booksellers say libraries are a threat to the ebook business even though research shows that libraries increase book sales – not the other way round. The current situation looks like a library nightmare. Though the focus for modern libraries shift from collections to connections it is still important that information will be more freely accessible in future – not less. There are also privacy concerns with some of the models in which libraries and we as citizens can purchase ebooks today. Booksellers can erase books from our devices (it has been done!), can spy on us to see what we read, underline and bookmark in our ebooks etc. Libraries do not own ebooks. They license them – and can’t lend them out limitlessly on most contracts.

The e-book formats are not universal and library e-book services are often hard to use limiting potential use because of technical illiteracy and difficulties.

The values behind Unglue.it contribute to another voice in the debate on the future of ebooks, libraries and access. If Unglue.it becomes a universal success the role of libraries on the e-book market will be (almost) obsolete because they will have provided all ebooks freely available for us all in every digital format without DRM and without spying on the reader etc. This is basically a very librarianish goal… – but there is still a long way to go.

Crowd funding – success and challenges

One important thing when crowd funding is that your project tells a story that is important to the possible contributors. You need to see that what you are contributing to will make a difference to someone and will be making the world a better place. This can be a tricky thing for a project like Unglue.it because everyone can agree that universal access to good books is an important issue – but what if the title does not appeal to me? Sometimes it is easier to raise a lot of money for a cause broadly known than for a work of art very few people know.
Crowd funding is not a new thing. It has been used to collect funds for helping out after natural disasters for many years and political parties are crowd funded by their members etc. Barack Obamas campaign for the presidential election 2008 was partly crowd funded like many other presidential campaigns have been. The new thing about Obamas campaign was that so many people contributed even if the amounts were small – a lot of people “owned” the campaign. These are all examples of projects that their supporters meant would make the world a better place.

Crowd funding projects – library related and beyond

In the library field successful crowd funding campaigns include Buy India a Library where 100 people from all over the world funded the building of a library connected to a school in Mysore, India including books, newspapers and wages for the staff for two years. The campaign raised more than 3000 Euros in less than two weeks and it was more funds than needed. Therefore it additionally funded four donkey drawn mobile libraries in Africa. The thought about opening a library in a world where a lot of libraries were closed appealed broadly.

The online library TV show This Week in Libraries current season is also partly crowd funded by people from all over the world who want to keep the show on the air. This Week in Libraries focuses on ideas and innovation in libraries and interviews library innovators from all over the world. The Help This Week in Libraries campaign showed that the show has a large world-wide supporter group.

A few examples of non-library related projects are singer Amanda Palmers newest album, art book and tour crowd funded via the very popular platform Kickstarter.com. Her campaign collected more than one million dollars before deadline.

The Uni is a reading room for public space that is also funded via Kickstarter and even though it is based in New York City there are now a new Uni in Kazakhstan too. It provides a flexible library like outdoor space for reading, showcasing learning and one of its aims is to improve public space.

Good luck with crowd funding your own future projects and with making the world a better place by crowd funding others projects and unglueing books to the world.

Jan Holmquist is a librarian working with library development in South East Denmark at Guldborgsund-bibliotekerne.
He is also a global librarian, Zukunftsentwickler, blogger, Tweeter and crowd funder – member and co-founder of the Buy India a Library team and Help This Week in Libraries team.

Picture credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/freefoto/3239197673/sizes/m/in/photostream/

A librarians summer (vacation) diet

About a month ago my good friend Buffy Hamilton shared this post from Chris Brogan. It inspired me to plan a summer diet for myself. I am on vacation for the next three weeks – and shortly after that I head to Helsinki for the IFLA conference. During my vacation I will…

Unplug more – Disconnect to connect
I have been thinking about and practicing more unplugging from social media lately. I am busy at work and I value my network in my spare time. What I learn from people on twitter is hard to overrate – but most important to me is being present with whatever I experience and the people I find valuable. Unplugging from technology focuses my attention to where it is supposed to be at vacation time – with my wife and wonderful son and daughter. Rule: max 45 minutes of social media a day: Twitter that is. No Facebook or G+ – at least a week of total unplugging.

Summer reading: I will read more of what I save to Instapaper
I save an awful lot to read later at InstaPaper. I must learn to save less and read more. For summer reading I will focus on InstaPaper and read a lot of valuable stuff waiting for me there… And in the future I will be more brutal when I hit “Save to InstaPaper”.

I will read lot’s of children books with the kids
Because it is awesome 🙂

I will lay in the grass and look at the clouds – If weather permits.
Because…
I am a full grown man
I will lay… lay… lay
In the grass
…All day.


I will listen to an album a day – Because the album is still a strong artform

Often I listen to a few songs from different artists to hear new stuff or tunes from favorite albums. Spending time on listening to a whole album is rare these days. Summer is a oppertunity to enjoy albums as intended

Get on the bike – or run
I bicycle around 10 kilometres a day at workdays. I will get at least half an hour of excercise during vacation time too. (#notetoself)
When I cycle I will send warm thoughts to the awesome library unconference Cycling for Libraries – If you want to re-read what happened when they visited my library last year – Here’s a link for you.

I will use the summer to think about personal goals
Summer vacation time is a bit like New Year – but the weather is better. I’ll make “walk and think” appointments with myself to set personal goals for the rest of the year.

Not think
I will also take some time to clear my mind. Practice mindfulness 20 minutes a day – Without falling asleep that is! 🙂 – I will be Zen-ish!

That is all…

Why the story of Buy India a Library is (still) important

I am very excited to present with Justin Hoenke at Bibliothekartag 2012 i Hamburg, Germany about a project I love and am very proud to be a part of – Buy India a Library

How to use social media for collaboration, inspiration and changing the world will be some of the tracks of our talk. Including a small how to – and facts about the project and the library in Mysore, India. What can you learn from what we did with this project? That is what we will try to answer.

We did not do it alone but with a little help from our friends: Librarians and library lovers from all over the world. 100 people donated more than 3000 Euros and here it is – The Library:

We did this using social media without ever meeting in person. In fact the first time I will meet one from our team is the day before the presentation when I meet Justin in Hamburg. It is not a rare thing to work remote with people you never met – but to gather a team (Justin, Andromeda, Ned, Jan) and fund a library in another country in two weeks. I’ll say that is really something – and the take away is that when we could do it – you can do it too. It’s hard work but it is possible and it is easier than you think.

Libraries are closing all over the world but we just opened a new one funded by awesome people who know that this library will make a huge difference in a local community in India and give children from Mysore, India an opportunity to get important literacy skills and thereby empowering them to live dignified lifes.

This project is an example of egoless social media. Connections matter and because of the connections we made and facilitated, people from all over the world gave Mysore a physical library. Once more, and I can never say this enough, thank you to all those who donated and those who shared what we did. The library is yours, it is ours but most of all – it is the people in the Mysore community that benefits from this library – Just like it should be.

This library, like any other library, will make it’s community better by sharing, gathering  fascilitating and creating knowledge in it’s community…

It Is a Global Profession… If You Want It to Be

It Is a Global Profession… If You Want It to Be

I am very happy to be able to share my thoughts about global librarianship over at Jessica Olin´s great blog “Letters to a Young Librarian”. I hope you will take the time to visit Jessica´s blog and read my post – Comments very welcome.

Jan Holmquist – Unplugged. Thoughts about social media vacation

Photo Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/ste71/3884926360/
The logical thing to do when unplugging for some time is to blog and tweet about it right?

I began thinking about what I wanted from chosen downtime and how to do it best. Since this is not a one time thing (and not the first time either) I want to able to unplug in different ways:

Code Red: Total unplug. No twitter, No email, No facebook etc

Code Orange: I don´t read tweets and don´t tweet but I answer direct messages, and email. I will not catch up on feeds when I´m plugged again.

Code Yellow: I might read and share stuff but I will not be updated on everything in my feed. This will be a broadcast and answer only. Not the best way to use social media – but for taking an inspirational reading day -it might work fine.

Code Green: Plugged…

While doing reasearch about unplugging (Yes – I know… But I did). I found out that I missed National day of unplugging. I downloaded their app (Yes… I know… But I did) and it’s a funny fact that the function to make your own unplugging manifesto is not working (is this app trying to tell me something?)

Why unplug:
There are lot’s of good reasons to do so. Top priority for this  unplugging time is to slow down and be present with my family during vacation time.
To single task, reduce stress and simply to recharge could be other reasons to unplug. How do you unplug? And for what reasons? – I´d like to do an updated version of this post later so your input would be highly appreciated.

Anyway – Here are some links if you are so inclined.
The 99 %: What Happened to Downtime? The Extinction of Deep Thinking & Sacred Space
Harvard Business Review – Blog: The Magic of Doing One Thing at a Time
BBC-Future: Time out on technology
Renny Gleeson TED talk on antisocial phone tricks (3 minutes)
TTW: The BALANCED Librarian (Updated)

See you soon. Take care.

[credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/ste71/3884926360/ ]

http://www.bbc.com/future/story/20120509-time-out-on-technology

Get a happier life with your library

Watch this video about Danish public libraries in English for people new to Danish society and tell me what you think.

When you’re new in Denmark a lot of things can be confusing. The library is here to help you! Through the library you have access to a world of knowledge, culture, entertainment, social activites, and much much more. Visit your local library or visit us at bibliotek.dk

Here is an online version of the handout with the same theme:
Get a happier life with your library – ISSUU

Crowd Funded by Librarians World-Wide – TWIL

This week in Libraries is a rare thing. It is a perfect way to learn about library concepts and innovation for people entering the profession. It is also like a free course to keep your library knowledge up to date for people already a part of the profession. To keep the cameras rolling Eric and Jaap need our help. Let’s crowd-fund our favorite library TV show this year. “This Week in Libraries is crowd-funded by librarians world-wide”. Please support this campaign by donating on the Help TWIL Tumblr.

If you would like to see the episode where I’m the guest on This Week in Libraries – The link is here.

World wide thoughts of a Danish librarian

%d bloggers like this: