Contribution and relevance begin with visibility. Libraries must clearly answer:
Libraries exist to know and serve their communities, whether centered around geography, purpose, or subjects.
Libraries maintain some of the richest descriptive metadata, curated content, and services in the world. For the Web to connect with libraries, we must share in a way the Web understands
The Web values happy users above all. The Library.Link Network completes the cycle of visibility by working with libraries and providers to ensure the wealth of data and connections links Web users to the Library’s resources, locations, special collections, and events.
The Library.Link Network is a project to bring the immense value libraries have to offer to the World Wide Web. People who search for resources for research and leisure through Web searches and use digital assistants find plenty of sellers of books and media, but are rarely presented with libraries as an option. This is because although libraries have extraordinarily rich catalogs, these are maintained using technology that is not very transparent to web search engines and intelligent agents.
By participating in The Library.Link Network, institutions can upload their catalogs as they are and have them transformed into sites which are very carefully designed to be as attractive as possible for modern automated web applications. The quality of information organization librarians maintain every day is such that libraries should be at the center of the knowledge age, and Library.Link is working to fulfill this potential. Libraries benefit because they can reverse trends which have seen them lose prominence in the minds of the public. Everyone else benefits—researchers, educators, public policy makers, businesses and more because they gain access on the Web to improved, and usually free facilities which have been too long hidden away.
To tell the full story of the library requires collaboration of libraries and their vendors. The Library.Link Network Publishing Partners are commited to telling the Web the full story.
The Library.Link Network performs a 4 step process. Source data is transformed to Linked Data using the BIBFRAME vocabulary. The resulting data is linked across the Library’s Graph and external Web sources. Then the data is published to the Web in a variety of Linked Data vocabularies with clear Creative Commons attribution for the Library. Then through organic or direct consumption, the newly available library resources are available though web search engines or 3rd party applications.
While The Library.Link Network was introduced in 2016, the technology, infrastructure, and partnerships with libraries and some providers have been in place since 2014 helping pave the way. In just the last year The Library.Link Network now has: