Keepapitchinin, the Mormon History blog » Keepa Goes a-Twittering

Keepa Goes a-Twittering

By: Ardis E. Parshall - August 21, 2009

Cutting edge history, that’s what we like: the tools of tomorrow to access the stories of yesteryear.

As you’ve probably noticed from the sidebar, Keepa is now on Twitter, set up to display the five most recent tweets. (I’m so stinkin’ proud of myself, figuring out how to put that display in the sidebar and make it match without destroying J.’s template.) You can also follow Keepa by signing up through the link provided.

I expect to use it to drop names and make the life of an archives rat sound exotic and wonderful. (It is glamorous, you know; I just need to make it sound as good as it is.) Maybe there will be some mini-stories, too, odd tidbits I run across in research that can be told in 140 characters. You never know. Stay tuned. Sign up.



  1. I like it, Ardis. Good stuff.

    Comment by Steve Evans — August 21, 2009 @ 3:16 pm

  2. i missed having a seat at the blogger table? waaaaah!

    Comment by ellen — August 21, 2009 @ 6:19 pm

  3. You were sitting there, ellen — it’s just that you and I were the only bloggers there at the time, and I didn’t have a convenient way to brag about it then.

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — August 21, 2009 @ 7:23 pm

  4. @keepa Welcome 2 Twitter. U will luv it! #LDS #Mormon :-)

    Comment by Brian Duffin — August 22, 2009 @ 12:44 am

  5. Yay for technology!

    Comment by Michelle Glauser — August 22, 2009 @ 2:17 am

  6. I became a follower just to read tweets about the level of raucous children in the library :-)

    Comment by Anne (U.K) — August 22, 2009 @ 4:49 am

  7. Well, Anne, I wish you were here now. For the last hour or so, four adults have been rolling around on the floor — literally down on the floor, literally rolling around — with a baby girl less than a year old, who is delightedly squealing with all the attention. Earlier, she was banging a pair of sunglasses against the metal shelving, over, and over, and over, and over, while one of the men — I don’t know who’s the parent and who is just some besotted relative — leaned against the table where I’m trying to type this, banging his fat butt in time to the baby’s squeals.

    I kid you not. I have no idea how much disturbance one group is allowed to make around here before the staff will do anything. But it’s a farce. This is NOT a research library — it’s a zoo.

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — August 22, 2009 @ 12:51 pm

  8. Awesome.

    Comment by J. Stapley — August 22, 2009 @ 1:07 pm

  9. Oh Ardis, that’s awful. But don’t worry, it will get better when you move to the new fancy… oh. You did.

    Comment by jeans — August 22, 2009 @ 2:12 pm

  10. Yeah. I realized on my way home that this is the two-month anniversary of the opening of the new Anything But A Library. If I were giving it a report card today — and I won’t, because of the vindictive behavior of one administrator after my last report card — I would give the library an A for surface appearance and an F for everything else. If the church didn’t have a monopoly on these materials, if they were a business with a competitor who could fill my needs, I would go to the competitor and never, ever go back to the church library. It’s that bad, and I’m no longer willing to be a good sport about it and pretend otherwise. As it stands now, the new library is a failure. They could turn it around overnight with competent administrators, but they aren’t accepting feedback beyond some silly little cards that ask all the wrong questions and seek only for pats on the back, and anybody with the power to do anything is safely locked away behind security gates where ordinary mortals like me can’t tell them what isn’t working.

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — August 22, 2009 @ 3:43 pm

  11. Wow. That bad? It must be if it gets under your skin to this degree. I will have to get some more information from you before I attempt to use it.

    Comment by SC Taysom — August 22, 2009 @ 5:33 pm

  12. By the way, the comment about the guy’s fat butt caused me to spit Dietcoke all over the keyboard.

    Comment by SC Taysom — August 22, 2009 @ 5:34 pm

  13. The occasional user probably won’t have the same frustrations I have, SC: you could ask for help and nobody would think twice about it; you can have trouble finding something and not realize that you’ll have the same trouble with everything you need, every day; you might be disturbed by some grossly rude tourist or mob of tourists but chalk it up to their rudeness without the frustration of realizing that the staff has no intention whatsoever of preserving an atmosphere appropriate to a research library.

    For me, it’s the constant frustration of facing the same problems every day, and discovering new ones regularly, while noticing that nothing is getting better, nothing apparently being done to address the problems — possibly because nobody who might care enough to do anything understands they are problems, since there is no feedback mechanism.

    And you won’t be faced by one thing that I have to deal with: I stand in line like everybody else, but when I get to the desk I’m waved aside with “you’re here every day; let me help these people who are only here today” — and when I finally do get the ear of somebody, if anyone else interrupts with their own problem, the staff member turns his back on me to go attend to the interrupter’s needs. Familiarity clearly does breed contempt.

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — August 22, 2009 @ 5:46 pm

  14. I hope to have beat one problem today by spending $100 to buy a portable scanner. I’m not stupid, and I’m not technologically inept, but after two months I still can’t scan anything to my flash drive without help, and *I*can’t*get*help*. You have to press 10 or 15 options before you can get your copy (many dozens more, if you want to assign a label to your scan to distinguish it from the other 100 scans you might make) — most of the staff insist on making all the selections without explaining what they’re doing, so I can’t learn and have to ask for help again the next time. Even when they do explain, and I *think* I have it, the next time I’m standing there staring at the screen, my blood pressure rising, unable to figure out what to press next (would you know that the answer to “select destination” is “save file”? how the heck is that a destination?). I’ve asked and asked for a printed list of steps to follow in making a scan, but nobody is willing to make it, and nobody is willing to spend enough time to let me write notes and make my own list. So today I gave up and bought my own equipment.

    Too bad I can’t buy my own catalog and my own courteous staff member.

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — August 22, 2009 @ 5:52 pm

  15. Wow that sounds insufferable.

    Sorry to hear that Ardis.

    Comment by JonW — August 22, 2009 @ 6:00 pm

  16. I have six kids. I would NEVER bring them to the Church History Library and let them run amok. It just does not make sense. That is why the church has a museum.

    Comment by JonW — August 22, 2009 @ 6:04 pm

  17. Keepatwitterinin!

    Comment by Tatiana — August 23, 2009 @ 1:16 am

  18. One of the things I like about the Tennessee State Archives is the obscurity. Few people know it exists, and those that do have to go through a security guard to get it. It was very much like the old Church Archives. Only the most dedicated …. [I could go on, but I think you get the idea]

    Comment by Bruce Crow — August 24, 2009 @ 8:38 pm

  19. Yup, I sure do.

    Still, I wouldn’t care how many people knew about the library, if they would treat the library as a library instead of whatever they think it is. You know how often I wrote comments that tried to walk people through how to use the archives, and how to get what they needed if the most obvious records were not available. It isn’t that I wanted to keep the archives my private little secret.

    But people who can’t respect the library really have no business turning it into something else. And if the staff had any respect for the library, they would safeguard it a little better, in several respects.

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — August 24, 2009 @ 9:28 pm

  20. It sounds like the library isn’t designed for the technically inept. It is difficult when one’s utility to society becomes obsolete. Open and easy access to previously obscure and exclusive information to the citizen and even people with a bunch of kids must be frustrating to those who once had all that power only to themselves.

    Comment by Justin Case — September 3, 2009 @ 7:50 pm

  21. Such a clever name for such a clueless fool.

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — September 3, 2009 @ 8:06 pm

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