One facet of transliteracy is essentially “literacy in using new media”.  I was just talking with our reference coordinator about how this plays into our Literacy Department’s learning objectives for teacher education students, who need to learn to teach to “new literacies”, which is pretty much the same thing…

And then, today, I just spent half an hour pulling pictures off my iPhone and communicating on Twitter and Facebook in the middle of a seriously busy day.

I was working.

NO, really, I was.

I was studying the library’s Facebook presence because we’re about to use it as a reply venue for our lobby’s suggestion board.  I was twittering with the president of the Student Government Association about library assessment data.  I was pulling pictures of the suggestion board from my iPhone to email to said president.  I was replying to a staff member on Facebook about how we’ll reply to student suggestions.

All work.  All useful, valid tasks.  All things that get painted with the “not work” or “not serious” or “not academic” brush.  And yet… all work, all serious, all in support of our academic enterprise.  And all things I could have done in another venue using other tools, but… these are the tools that work for me, and for the stakeholders I’m working with.  So this is how we’ll do it, today.

And tomorrow.

But the day after that… I bet the world changes again, and it’ll be time to be literate in using a new tool to do an old task.  Again.  And that’s life.


  1. What do you mean, “change”? But WHY can’t the skills learned 30…20…10…5 years ago still be valid TODAY? Why should we have to .. “change”? Why should we have to learn _more_ than our dusty degrees proclaim?


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