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GLBTRT Web Committee Report - 2011 Midwinter

Submitted, 22 December, 2010

Contacts Page Updates Requested

Check your contact information on the GLBTRT Contacts page.  Ask your committee members to verify their information.  Is the email listed on this your preferred email for ALA business?  Send in changes to glbtrt@gmail.com.  In the coming months, the Committee and Contacts pages will somehow be merged.  More will be forth coming about this.

Blogs

During September 2010, the original GLBTRT blog was migrated to ALA's upgraded, in-house WordPress platform.  The content of the original GLBTRT blog was parsed into two blogs: the GLBT Reviews blog and the GLBTRT News blog.  The original GLBTRT blog’s contents warranted the creation of two.  Since we hope to promote our reviews beyond our membership (thus the name GLBT Reviews and not GLBTRT Reviews), it was best to extract information that was oriented for GLBTRT / ALA members.  The extracted items logically warranted / fit into a GLBTRT News blog.  The Over the Rainbow Project (OTR) blog was also migrated into the ALA hosted system just after Annual 2010 from their wordpress.com blog.

On the GLBT Reviews blog, the posts (about 130at the time) all contained character encoding problems that resulted in question mark glyphs in place of all quote, apostrophe and question marks.  Over Summer 2010, all posts on the reviews blogs where edited to repair these charactering encoding problems.  Since traffic on GLBT Reviews is increasing, all previous posts will be reprocessed: add consistently sized cover art; clean up other minor formatting issues; add carefully selected WorldCat record link.   More about WorldCat links is shared in the WorldCat link section below.  A worthwhile future project for website committee and reviewers to undertake is the addition of all reviews ever written in the Newsletter to be added to GLBT Reviews.  The completion of the Newsletter archive project, noted below will facilitate this possible project.

The hard work on the blogs as paid off in terms of hits (views).   Google Analytics (GA) was tested on GLBT Reviews beginning in September.  It will be implemented on the News and the Over the Rainbow List.  The following numbers are small but we are in the early days of our web presence nodes rising up in search engine results lists.  Note that the following numbers do include the reviews editor and the web committee working on the site.  GA’s  feature to block certain IP address is not working and it will not be fixed soon.  We are investigating a tool to use GA that will add IP address blocking.  At worse case, the reviews editor and web committee members account for about 100 hits.

 Brief Statistics for GLBT Reviews (September to mid-December 2010):

  • The blog had 810 visits with a total of 1,812 page views
  • There’s a total of about 535 unique visitors coming to the blog
  • Every month, about half of the visitors are new
  • Average time spent on the site per visit is 3 minutes and 22 seconds
  • Search Engines account for leading 424 or (51.90%) of our visitors to us
  • Referring Sites account for leading 215 or (26.32%) of our visitors to us
  • Direct Traffic (bookmarks) account for 178 or (21.79%) of our visitors to us
  • 817 visits came from 43 countries/territories

The following is a snap shot of the top 10 countries sorted by Average time spent on the site.

Country/Territory

Visits

Pages /Visit

Avg. Time on Site

% New Visits

Taiwan

1

9

0:12:53

100.00%

South Africa

12

2.67

0:07:51

66.67%

United States

657

2.41

0:03:54

64.23%

Mexico

2

1.5

0:02:21

100.00%

Austria

2

3

0:02:10

100.00%

Turkey

1

2

0:02:09

100.00%

Canada

27

1.67

0:01:41

85.19%

Togo

1

2

0:01:18

100.00%

Croatia

2

2

0:01:14

100.00%

 

The hard work on the blogs, and lacing the web presence together has also paid off in terms of search engine results.  Searches for Over the Rainbow books (trade out ‘books’ with: list, book list, etc), all fair well in being on the first page of results.  Searches for GLBT Reviews, LGBT Reviews, etc . also fair well.  Searching for LGBT Reviews, results in our blog coming in second right after Gay & Lesbian Review.  Note these searches are done without quotes.

In the coming months every effort will be made to get our award lists, reviews, and book lists to be in the first page of results on searches for book titles and/or authors.  Google searches for book titles and authors have already lead people to GLBT Reviews; without much search engine optimization (SEO).  As noted above, search engines account for leading 424 or (51.90%) of our visitors to the reviews blog.  Note also that the traffic from search engines almost always means the person is a new visitor.  The following is the top twenty searches (of 189) performed in search engines, which lead people to GLBT Reviews.  Starting with the 21st search, all the queries lead to one visit.

Keyword

Visits

Pages/Visit

Avg. Time on Site

% New Visits

Visits

lgbt

48

1.041667

20.29167

0

48

glbt round table newsletter queer hauntings

8

11.5

2078.875

0

8

best gay fiction 2010

5

2

48.2

1

5

freaks and revelations

5

2.8

626.6

0.6

5

best gay book

4

4

1341.75

0.5

4

porn comic laura gunn up to date

3

1

213.6667

0.333333

3

joyce meggett""

2

1

0

1

2

best gay male fiction 2010

2

1.5

11.5

1

2

black gay men stories

2

1

0

0.5

2

chica busca chica

2

1.5

39

1

2

firooz and his brother by alex jeffers analysis

2

1.5

132.5

1

2

gay romance

2

1

0

1

2

gay speculative fiction

2

1

0

1

2

girl seeks girl

2

1

0

1

2

jennings plato and paul

2

1.5

282

0.5

2

plato or paul by jennings

2

1

0

1

2

plato or paul the origins of western homophobia review

2

1

0

1

2

reviews dictionary of homophobia, the: a global history of gay and lesbian experience

2

1

0

0.5

2

transgender explained for those who are not

2

1

0

1

2

 

To meet the goal of our award lists, reviews, and book lists to be in the first page of results on searches for book titles and/or authors, a collection of terms is already being complied in the website committee’s ALA Connect space <>.  Over the coming months, more terms will be gathered from the GLBTRT community that will be used to apply search engine optimization techniques to all the main nodes of the round table website (each link in the left navigation bar is a node on the site) as well as the GLBTRT blogs.  There’s a number of SEO pluging for WordPress that will be investigated.< />

David of the Website Committee will be attending SEO training in an online course offered by ALA on January 20 and 27.  Techniques learned will be immediately applied to the GLBTRT web presence.

It is recommended that any new GLBTRT blogs should be developed in the ALA hosted WordPress this platform because:

  • ALA staff will always have access to these sites/accounts so the round table will never lose;
  • access in cases where one person happens to be the only admin, and they drop out of contact;
  • ALA is paying for this service, they host it on their servers;
  • There is support available from ALA staff;
  • Having round table blogs in the ala.org domain has assured that search engines send our blogs, and their individual entries, up in search results.  Additionally, having this web presence (website, blogs, Facebook, Twitter, etc.) all interlinking only adds to our "lightness factor" in search engine results.  Ultimately, this will lead to a powerful platform to share resources we develop as they will be discovered by people;
  • URLs will professional, they will be uniform (this also helps our lightness factor);
    • glbtrt.ala.org/reviews
    • glbtrt.ala.org/overtherainbow
    • glbtrt.ala.org/news

 

WorldCat Permalinks Project

Currently, all titles in the Stonewall Book Award List and Over the Rainbow Book List are linked to WorldCat records.  All reviews published since Summer 2010 on GLBT Reviews are linked to WorldCat records.  As noted above in the Blogs section, all GLBT Reviews posts prior to Summer 2010, will be processed in the following manner: add consistently sized cover art; clean up other minor formatting issues; add carefully selected WorldCat record link.  Since this processing needed to happen anyway, it is easy to add a link to WorldCat.  Links to all Rainbow Project titles will also be gathered and shared with the Rainbow Project blog manager.

These links allow the user to see a particular title in libraries (who participate in WorldCat) near them, as well as provide links to purchase the books from several vendors.  In cases where WorldCat has multiple records, (ebooks and other reasons) the record linked to is carefully chosen   While this is not a perfect solution, it does get people closer to finding a book they might be interested in.

 

Social Networking

Integration

Our social networking presence is continuing to flourish. As we have added accounts to different social networking sites the need to streamline account maintenance by a single person became critical. Hootsuite allows us to instantly share or schedule updates to our Facebook Page, Twitter and MySpace accounts at one time, in one place.  Additionally, Hootsuite has been configured to monitor the RSS feeds of all the GLBTRT blogs and the ALA PR office’s GLBTRT feed.  Any time a post is made to the blogs or a story about the GLBTRT is in American Libraries, a notification will be posted automatically to our Facebook Page, Twitter and MySpace.  Hootsuite also allows for multiple accounts and project/task assignments.  In November HootSuite went from a free to pay model.  All the services that the website committee relied on for free for about a year now cost $5.99 per month.  The free account will not allow the number of feeds the application monitors and number of networking sites it can post to.  David is paying for the costs of Hootsuite.

GLBTRT Feeds on Website

Long term, the goal is to combine all RSS feeds of all our blogs and social networking pages have updates (no duplicates) appear dynamically in one feed on the GLBTRT’s home page as seen on the LITA website.  Rough tests of such a feature are being tested now on the main GLBTRT page as well as the GLBTRT News page.

LibraryThing (LT)

Maintaining a presence in LT does require some hands-on work of web committee members but the results are worth the time.

  • Generally promotes LGBTQ titles in LT
  • promotes the GLBTRT's Stonewall Book Award books, List books and Reviewed books through using consistent tags to identify books by award, list and review tags in LT
  • Using LT means that we can do nice things with the covers of books

Another reason for the round table to explore using LT is to explore the maintaining a complete LGBTQ title collection within LT.  LT can allow for a collection of more than 10K, with special consideration on their part.  They are very willing to work with us on anything.  Potential for this will be explore before Annual 2011.

Currently all the titles of Stonewall Book Award winners and Over the Rainbow Project are in our LibraryThing collection.   (Once the final Over the Rainbow list is released, the titles will stay in the collection but they will not be tagged Over the Rainbow Book List.)  Adding new titles is now very easy.  Import happens automatically when a text file containing delimited ISBNs or ISSNs is uploaded to LibraryThing’s import page.  In the future, if all the GLBTRT lists contain an ISBN, titles can be added to the LibraryThing collection very easily.

Timeliness is important to maintaining a presence in LibraryThing.  We will have a maintenance cycle on the website committee calendar to add titles to LibraryThing after the release of:

  • Stonewall Award winner and honor books
  • books added to Rainbow Project and Over the Rainbow lists
  • book reviews

Profile: http://www.librarything.com/profile/GLBTRT

For more information see the GLBTRT Website Committee’s workspace devoted to LibraryThing: http://connect.ala.org/node/100505

Facebook Migration & Consolidation

At the end of December 2011 the GLBTRT Facebook Group was deleted.  Messages about this were sent out to the Group community with no response on 14 May and 14 December 2011.  Pictures from the group have been saved and will be added to the FB Page.

The message sent was at follows:

Subject:  Midwinter Meeting Events & Deletion of FB Group

Midwinter Meeting Schedule:
Find the GLBTRT’s Midwinter Meeting schedule and meeting documents on the GLBTRT’s Events & Meetings page. http://www.ala.org/ala/mgrps/rts/glbtrt/events/index.cfm The schedule has meeting venue names and room numbers as well as Google Maps links to locations. Our Midwinter Meeting events are also on our Facebook Page’s events calendar: www.facebook.com/GLBTRT

Deletion of our FB Group:
Please join our Facebook Page at facebook.com/GLBTRT. Our Group page (through which you are getting this message) will be shut down in about a week in favor of our FB Page.

Advantages of a "page" over a "group":

* Having that nifty custom url of facebook.com/GLBTRT is a great reason (can’t have that with a group);

* We need one presence on FB so members of both the Page and Group don't get hit with the same messages and event notifications;

* Maintaining one page and adding events will be simpler. For instance, our Midwinter events are being loaded dynamically from a master calendar that I’m keeping. This is not possible for in a Group;

* We can use our Page to link to others pages as "favorites" (such as ours and the SLA's LGBT Group Page and many other great glbtq organizations we’ve connected with already on our Page);

*We can spread our “Like” button all over our web presence, further promoting our organization and lgbtq literature;

* We can add applications to your page such as RSS feed tools. (this is a huge bonus for me since I use Hootsuite to automatically update our FB Page, Twitter account, etc. We can also generate a wall story automatically on our FB Page anytime one of our three blogs is updated. Not possible in a Group.)

* We can gather (anonymous) demographic information about the users who visit your page, even seeing the number of views of individual wall posts are viewed;

* We could advertise our Facebook Page if we wanted;

* We will still have the same functionality to create discussion threads, upload photos, and create events;

* When you do create events you can specify which regions you want it advertised to (For example, if you have an event in NYC you can send out an update to only users that are in that region);

* You have much more freedom to provide information about your organization with customization features not offered on a Group page. Explore company FB Pages for all the ideas how our Page can be customized;

* If you want to upload videos you can simply add the YouTube application instead of having to upload them to Facebook itself (this way you can link to videos on YouTube that you don't have rights to);

There are tons of reasons why we need to do this. The above are just a few. I’ll make sure to save all our images and migrate them to our flickr account or save them on our Page.

Best,
David S. Vess, GLBTRT Website Committee

 

Meeting Documents (current and past)

The Website Committee is still looking for past meeting agendas and minutes to post on the website. These minutes and agendas are well-structured documents processed with rich metadata and structure to make them accessible as well as easy to read. These templates (based off of models from formats in Alice Sturgis’ The Standard Code of Parliamentary Procedure, 4th Edition, as well as Robert’s Rules of Order ) are located on the Events & Meetings page.

If you have agendas and minutes we are missing on the above page, please email us at glbtrt@gmail.com.

Current and Past Minutes/Agendas: http://www.ala.org/ala/mgrps/rts/glbtrt/events/index.cfm
Minutes/Agenda Processing Workflow: http://connect.ala.org/node/106540

Newsletters Project

For the complete explanation of the Newsletter project see the GLBTRT Website Committee's space on ALA Connect halfway down the page under the heading Newsletter Indexing / Digitizing.
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During September 2010, photocopies of another batch of the GLTF; GLBTF and GLBTRT Newsletters were made.  They were then scanned and processed in to pdf files.  The scanning and processing workflows are complex, but well documented.  The scanning and processing work flows will soon be published in a doc to the website committee’s Connect space.  To date, eleven more newsletters have been added to the newsletter archive.

Over the Spring/Summer 2010 a thorough search of WorldCat was performed for iterations of our newsletter.  All libraries holding our newsletter were contacted to:

  • verify holdings (holdings information was not always listed (or accurate)in libraries' catalogs);
  • request they change their "e-holdings" records (shared by many libraries), to point to our current newsletter page, not the defunct but still live newsletter page on the previous committee chair's server space

The result of this 'census' of holdings in U.S. libraries is the spreadsheet created in the glbtrt@gmail.com account.  It is publically available here:  https://spreadsheets.google.com/pub?key=0AoVy9qIMXhvRdDBtV0tlTEllcjd2U3V...

In the coming month, batches of Newsletters are coming from the University of Minnesota.  Website Committee member, Amy Hribar, who works at UM, has facilitated this request for copies of the following newsletters from her Library.

  • v.1:no.1-2 (1988:spring-fall);
  • v.1:no.3 (1988:fall);
  • v.2:no.3-4 (1990:spring-summer);
  • v.3:no.1/2(1?)  1990:fall/1991:winter;
  • v.3:no.3  1991:fall;
  • v.3:no.3/4(2?)  1991:spring/summer;
  • v.3:no.4  1991:winter;
  • v.3:no.3-4 (1991:fall-winter);
  • v.4:no.1-4 (1992:spring-winter)
  • v.5:no.1-2 (1993:spring-summer)
  • v.9:no.1-2 (1997:spring-summer),
  • v.9:no.4 (1997:winter),
  • v.10:no.4 (1998),
  • v.11:no.2-4 (1999:summer-winter),
  • v.12 (2000)
  • v.13:no.1(2001)-v.18:no.3(2006) (missing vol.18 no.4)
  • v.19:no.2(2007)-v.19:no.4(2007) (missing vol.19 no.1)

 

If these Newsletters arrive in late December or January, they will be scanned, processed and posted in the Newsletter Archive by March or April 2011.

Upon receiving all these newsletters, scans will immediately be made and shared with committee member, Sara, who will proceed with her GLBTRT Newsletter indexing project.  As noted above, both scanning and processing work flows will soon be published in a doc to the website committee’s Connect space.

After this phase of the project is completed, posts about the remaining, missing issues will be consistently made on the Newsletter site, in the Newsletter, Facebook, etc. about the missing issues we will still need.

Work flows being documented:

  • scanner settings
  • image to pdf settings
  • processing in Adobe Acrobat Professional
    • (structure, metadata, OCR processing, file size processing)

 

Committee Roster

  • Amy Hribar, 2009-2011
  • Kenneth M. Kozel, 2010-2012
  • Sara Marcus, 2009-2011
  • David S. Vess, 2009-2011 (Chair)

Respectfully Submitted,
David S. Vess

 

 

Agenda Items

Jason, Anne and Dale, I leave it to you all to decide on if the following will be agenda items.  I think we can all talk about these issues on the email list after Midwinter.  You all decide.

  • Bibliography format that all lists should use
  • Welcome message issued when subscribing to the GLBTRT email list
  • Opening SC email list to anyone read or post to

Notes for Agenda Items

For these items I will bring copies of documentation (the ALA Connect page linked below) and make the following points and see what SC decides.  No need to add the below to the actual agenda.

  • Citation format
    • All lists of bibliographic information must be in a consistent format
      • Hits on our resources is growing
      • Is there a traditional format that ALA groups normally use?
      • Supply an ISBN one space after each citation in the following manner:
        • [citation] ISBN: XXXXXXXXXXXXX
        • Welcome Message
          • Welcome message background here: http://connect.ala.org/node/119019
          • Welcome message could be done outside of SC meetings with Membership Promo Comm., Fundraising Comm. and Secretary maybe?
          • I propose to open the SC email list to anyone who wants to subscribe; just like our membership list.  Benefits:
            • people not on the list can email the SC (messages just bounce now) ;
            • No maintenance will be required as the person subscribing can manage their subscription on their own per the easy directions posted on the GLBTRT’s Social Networking page;
            • eliminates the need to decide who is on and not on the list;
            • this approach will mirror ALA’s open meeting policy if we consider the email list a forum in which to conduct round table business in (I suppose?).