Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Alliance Library System and OPAL to open: An Alliance of Libraries 2.0 on Second Life

Alliance Library System and OPAL (Online Programming for All Libraries) – are pleased to announce that selected OPAL programs will soon be offered in the online virtual reality game Second Life. Book discussions, training sessions, and other programs will be offered to current virtual residents. The goal of the project is to promote the real library and online library services to adults who might not otherwise use the library. What is Second Life? Second Life is a 3-D virtual world entirely built and owned by its residents. Since opening to the public in 2003, it has grown explosively and today is inhabited by nearly 200,000 people from around the globe. There are shopping malls, events, homes, lands of different types, and best of all, participants can contribute content, buildings, and other digital creations.

“We are excited to be offering new outreach programs, events, and services to people who might not otherwise come to the library,” stated Kitty Pope, Executive Director of the Alliance Library System. “Second Life has almost 200,000 residents and is rapidly growing in popularity. This will allow us to see what works and what does not work in this area. Second Life has malls, residential neighborhoods, online communities – why not a library?”

Alliance Library System and OPAL are teaming up to utilize the programs currently offered online to librarians and library users to extend the programs to the Second Life virtual reality game. Although there are a couple of libraries currently on Second Life, none currently offers programs or services. Alliance and OPAL will start with programs and eventually hope to offer library services.

Second Life also now has a Teen Second Life. If adult programs are successful, the group will work to offer library services in Teen Second Life. Librarians who would like to become involved and receive updates on this collaborative project can join a google group set up for the new service at http://groups.google.com/group/alliancesecondlife
Interested librarians may also contact Lori Bell at lbell@alliancelibrarysystem.com for an invitation to join the group.

“We invite any librarian interested in working on this exciting project to join us,” remarked Kitty Pope. “After we offer some programs, if they are successful, we will want to expand to offer additional programs and services.”

Alliance will begin Second Life programming in June 2006. Alliance Library System is a regional library system located in East Peoria, Illinois with 260 library members of all types. Alliance offers continuing education, consulting, resource sharing, and delivery service to members.

1 comment:

Kelly said...

This is the former library system I worked at. Lori Bell is amazing. This is really awesome. Great idea and great work! WOW!