Update: The number of users in groups has almost doubled, but the Librarians who LibraryThing is standing firm at 22%. This is looking more and more like the true percentage of users who are librarians. I find this stunningly cool. Oh, PS: important new message display features on the way.
After forty-eight hours, we’re up to 270 groups.
714 people have joined at least one group. Even niches like Medieval Europe (18 members) and and Baseball (5 members) are reaching critical mass. Librarians who LibraryThing is the largest, with 169 members. This suggest that of LibraryThing users—or anyway it’s most active users—23% are librarians—take that, MySpace! 169 librarians can’t be wrong!!*
With that fact in mind, we need to reiterate that LibraryThing isn’t morphing into some horrible commercial or hook-up site. The amazing success of groups is testimony to a pent-up desire to relate around and discuss books on LibraryThing.** Reviews and profile comments weren’t enough—not enough by far. The forums we’re working on will extend that. But we haven’t forgotten the cataloging side, and will continue to improve our data and data models, expand our library horizons, and provide richer information for your catalogs.
Users have written 1,222 messages, which means Robyn and I need to release the “real” forum functionality soon! While we work on the cake, I added some frosting, RSS feeds.
* According to the ALA, there are 136,738 librarians in the United States alone. So, if 23% of LibraryThing’s 61,000 users are librarians, only 10% of librarians are LibraryThinging. In fact, it’s probably much less than that, as the librarians tend to stay and participate at higher levels.
** Not to mention the various families and suchnot putting their individual collection up mostly for searching purposes.