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Open WorldCat: Not Just Read-Only!

Roy Tennant reported on web4lib, “OCLC today released the ability for readers to write their own reviews for books in OpenWorldCat. See Lorcan’s blog. Readers can also upload tables of contents or add notes as well. These are all stored in a wiki system (WikiD) outside of the catalog itself.”

Yummy! I’ve already added a review for Jarhead. My quick observations follow.

Usability observation re registration: I didn’t think the registration page was too long, but I had no idea I already existed in the system, and the system didn’t help me out there. It kept insisting “The E-mail Address you entered is unavailable. Please enter a different E-mail Address.” It should tell me that the address is already registered. Once it dawned on me that mebbe somehow I already existed, it was easy to get a password reminder (actually a new password methinks).

Second observation, re writing the review: “Composing or editing text within this form is not recognized as browser activity.” A system would log me out while I’m exercising My Craft? After 15 minutes? Why?

Third: if the review is going to be held (which is understandable, Amazon does that too; nobody wants to read spam or troll vomit), tell the review writer right there on the screen. I submitted the review… I clicked on reviews… it wasn’t there…now it is… but most days Lorcan Dempsey can’t sit there watching the reviews come in. 😉

Fourth/Fifth: would love the ability to see when other people comment on things I comment on, and have access to a list of things I’ve reviewed.

Overall, very neato concept, and getting there with the execution! I recommend you all give it a whirl.

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