Using Social Networking Software to
Promote Digital Libraries1
Doina BANCIU1, Antoniu Gabriel PITIC2, Daniel VOLOVICI2,
Adi Cristina MITEA2
1 I C I Bucharest
(National Institute for R & D in Informatics)
8-10 Averescu Blvd.
011455 Bucharest 1, Romania
2 “Lucian Blaga” University of Sibiu,
“Hermann Oberth” Faculty of Engineering
10 Victoriei Blvd.,
Sibiu, 550024, Romania
Abstract: The impact of the social networks nowadays is impossible to ignore. Sales companies turn towards them as they acknowledge the opportunities provided by the socio-emotional value of the information that spreads quickly within the communities of these networks. Facebook, at more than 600 million users, is the largest of these, to date. We made a study on this very network, in order to observe the way an application can spread among its users for a week, without using any paid publicity. The use of Facebook’s framework for the promotion of digital libraries can constitute an opportunity and a challenge at the same time. In this paper, we propose an architecture to enable the promotion of digital libraries within the social network environment. The results prove that such an approach can have a significant impact in the online community.
Keywords: Digital libraries, Social network, Facebook, Social learning, Consumer, Software Architecture.
CITE THIS PAPER AS:
Doina BANCIU, Antoniu Gabriel PITIC, Daniel VOLOVICI, Adi Cristina MITEA, Using Social Networking Software to Promote Digital Libraries (1), Studies in Informatics and Control, ISSN 1220-1766, vol. 21 (2), pp. 221-226, 2012.
1. What is a Social Network?
In  we have the following definition “… a social network is a social structure made up of individuals (or organizations) called “nodes”, which are tied (connected) by one or more specific types of interdependency, such as friendship, kinship, common interest, financial exchange, dislike, sexual relationships, or relationships of beliefs, knowledge or prestige”.
Another definition for Social Network can be found in . Social networking is the grouping of individuals into specific groups, like small rural communities or a neighbourhood subdivision. Although social networking was established first between persons, especially at workplace, in universities or high schools, it is becoming more popular since internet and online communication can be used by everyone. The main cause for this situation is the fact that WEB is used by millions of individual people seeking other people to share messages, pictures, music, to find life partners or friends, to find business partners, to live some phantasies which in real life aren’t possible. The topics covered are extremely varied.
The strength of social networks has been demonstrated recently in organizing the street demonstrations on Wall Street in Manhattan.
In  there is an interesting study on social networks in US. The US patent office has reported that the social networking is becoming more and more an important subject for patent registration. The Figure 1 shows the rate at which these applications have been filled and the rate at which patents have issued from these applications over the past few years.
The total amount of published applications in Social Network per year is shown in grey and the total amount of issued patents is shown in black.
Social networking patents include any application or issued patent that has the phrase “social network” in it. The growth is obvious in the latest years.
The Facebook was started as a website and a social network in February 2004. It was founded by Mark Zuckerberg and his computer science college roommates and fellows Eduardo Saverin, Dustin Moskovitz and Chris Hughes. The name of the service stems from the colloquial name of the book given to students at the start of the academic year in the United State universities, to help them get to knew each other better. The social network allows anyone who declares himself/herself to be at least 13 years old to become a registered user of the website.
According to  in January 2011, Facebook had more than 600 million active users. In this application the user can create hers/his personal profile, include friends and exchange messages with them, post pictures and get notified if changes occur in friends profiles. Additionally, users can access common interest user groups, which are organized by schools, colleges or have other characteristics. A Compete.com 2009 study ranked Facebook as the most used social networking service by monthly active users, MySpace being ranked second. Also, Quantcast estimated that Facebook had 135.1 million monthly unique U.S. visitors in October 2010  and according to Social Media Today, in April 2010 an estimated 41.6% of the U.S. population already had a Facebook account.
- CANDELA, L. et al., The DELOS Digital Library Reference Model – Foundations for Digital Libraries, 2008
- WORRALL, A., Supporting Community-Building in Digital Libraries: A Pilot Study of LibraryThing, ASIST 2010, October 22-27, 2010, Pittsburgh, PA, USA
- ADAMS, A., A. BLANDFORD, The Unseen and Unacceptable Face of Digital Libraries. International Journal on Digital Libraries, vol. 4, 2004, pp. 71-81.
- POMERANTZ, J., Digital (Library Services) and (Digital Library) Services. Journal of Digital Information, 2008.
- LYNCH, C., Where Do We Go from Here? The Next Decade for Digital Libraries. D-Lib Magazine, 2005.
- Goldman to Clients: Facebook Has 600 Million Users, MSNBC. January 5, 2011 http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/40929239/ns/technology_and_science-tech_and_gadgets/
- Quantcast.com. facebook.com – Quantcast Audience Profile“. October 27, 2010. http://www.quantcast.com/facebook.com. Retrieved November 7, 2010.
- BALOG, A., Testing a Multidimensional and Hierarchical Quality Assessment Model for Digital Libraries, Studies in Informatics and Control, vol. 20, issue 3/2011, pp. 233-246
- VOLOVICI, D., M. BREAZU, D. I. MORARIU, A. C. MITEA, Digital Information Retrieval, Studies in Informatics and Control, vol. 19, issue 2/2010, pp. 185-192.
1 A previous, shorter version of this paper was presented in “The Second INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE in ROMANIA on Information Science and Information Literacy”, Sibiu, 2011, with the title “Digital Libraries in the Social Networks Era”.