Signing on...

Library help via IM hits the Reg.

OMG! On March 1 the University of Chicago Libraries began offering reference assistance by instant message.

In April Paul Belloni, business and economics reference librarian, chatted, via IM, with UChiBlogo about teenagers, typos, and how to know when a session is over.


[10:45 a.m.] meeboguest137866: Hi, it's Carrie Golus.
Is now a good time for the interview?

[10:46] U of C Ask a Librarian: Hi Carrie
What's up?

[10:47] meeboguest137866: Have students and faculty been receptive?

[10:47] U of C Ask a Librarian: Yes,
Although we usually have no idea who we are talking to
I could be chatting with a teenager in Japan
Or an Economics Professor

[10:55] meeboguest137866: Can you tell the students from the profs?

[10:55] U of C Ask a Librarian: No, LOL
If it is a research question I can guess it is a student
Professors usually have tech questions

[10:56] meeboguest137866: Haha
Have you ever accidentally offended someone?

[10:56] U of C Ask a Librarian: not that I am aware of
but a coworker once typed
"I will be back in a sex"
rather than "I will be back in a sec"
we can't take it back once we hit enter

[10:57] meeboguest137866: How about joke or harassing IMs?
It seems too's all anonymous

[10:57] U of C Ask a Librarian: no, not yet
I am a little surprised

[10:57] meeboguest137866: Do you like to IM with your friends?

[10:57] U of C Ask a Librarian: No

[10:58] meeboguest137866: You have to IM for work!
That's awesome

[10:58] U of C Ask a Librarian: I find people say something and walk away and I am too old fashioned
I am confused about if the conversation is over

[10:59] meeboguest137866: Right
Well, I think that's all my questions

[11:00] U of C Ask a Librarian: smiley faces usually indicate the end

[11:00] meeboguest137866: unless there was something you wanted to say
that I didn't know to ask about?

[11:00] U of C Ask a Librarian: :)

Carrie Golus, AB'91, AM'93

May 17, 2010