Thoughts about the The Hyperlinked Library Model

I worked my way through all of the readings from Module Three, The Hyperlinked Library Model.  I really connected with some of them and some of them I struggled to find the thread that would illuminate the author’s/’ view of the Hyperlinked Library.  I also struggled, initially, to see how Library 2.0 and the Hyperlinked Library are different.

I believe I’ve figured out that the idea of Library 2.0 has more to do with the participation of the users in the information seeking and creating process and the Hyperlinked Library has more to do with the way the organization functions internally and how its structure can interact with users externally to better serve them.  Library 2.0 says, let’s invite the users, see what they have to say. They Hyperlinked Library Model says, we can create networks to solve problems and find information; we don’t have to stick to the old way of being gatekeepers of information. Let’s see who can help and let’s create a partnership within or without our organization to find solutions or to create something new.

Libraries following the Hyperlinked Model have shifted their focus to the user.  I found Denning’s (2015) five questions for libraries helped me make the abstract idea of a “Hyperlinked Library Model” much more concrete and actionable:

  • How can we delight our users?
  • How can we manage the library to enable continuous innovation?
  • What will make things better, fast, cheaper, more mobile, more convenient, or more personalized for our users?
  • What needs could libraries meet that users haven’t even thought of yet?
  • What are the things that libraries are currently doing that users already love?

These questions turn the libraries’ goals outward, so that you’re not looking at what’s best for the organization, but what’s best for the users who make the library a vital part of the community?  It’s the connections and partnerships and learning that is created by asking the questions posed by Denning (2015).

I don’t currently work in a library, but even in the organization where I currently work, these questions and their answers provide insight into changes that need to be made but also leave space to continue doing what is working for the organization and its users or clients.


Denning, S. (2015, April 28).  Do we need libraries? Forbes. Retrieved from

Posted on September 9, 2019, in Uncategorized and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. I’m glad you looked further into the difference between Library 2.0 and hyperlink library. That had me a little confused too about what the diffrence was.

  2. I love the Denning questions…gets your thought process flowing in the right direction…One of the things I keep coming back to while reading is how to define our patrons/users…when we really dig deep we realize how diverse the base of users might be (including those who are currently not showing up)…I feel the Hyperlinked Library asks us to think about the populations we serve differently–not dividing them into the typical categories by age, ethnicity, gender or readers and non-readers…we are asked to find that commonality among various users and bring people together who might no ordinarily find each other…thanks for reminding me about this!

  3. Joshua Tuszynski

    I think you have been able to focus in on a key point about what any library should be focused in on, the users. I like Dennings’ point about how it is important to innovate and change, but to also take the time to reflect on what it is you are doing well. then it turns into a throwing the baby out with the bathwater type of situation.

  4. This is great! I appreciate your thoughtful exploration of the concepts. #hyperlib was actually born out of the Library 2.0 movement and is foundational to the model. I think I would say THL as a model is always evolving as our socio-technological world demands it.

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