As I think more about the experience of playing along with @dancohen‘s Twitter Mystery game, it occurs to me that this was a great example of collaborative reference. The question was a great reference question. Cohen apparently hoped that people would solve by collective knowledge (crowdsourcing) rather than search, some players were clearing using search and others were going on their own prior knowledge. Chris Foster talks about this in terms of The Crowd versus Search, but the results seemed to me to be a great example of the Crowd plus Search, which to my mind is exactly what collaborative reference should be.
With that in mind, could we use a simple Twitter hashtag to create a collaborative online reference community?
Let’s see if it works …
Got a tough reference question? Tweet about it using the hashtag #refq, then follow along and help others answer their tough questions.
I’ll start it off with a tough one from last year that I never did find a satisfying answer to.
See you at #refq