Based on the social capital theory, we assume that personal and professional experts are both relevant to people’s competence development. However, to date, there is little empirical evidence of how professional experts can support, or impede, people in learning how to deal with social media. The goal of this study is to examine the role and position of social media experts in the distribution of information on social media within the library as organization. Design/ methodology/ approach – We draw upon social network and qualitative methods, within three public libraries located in Belgium. Findings – The findings suggest that as the most central actors, social media experts in a library play a significant role in either supporting or constraining the distribution of information on social media. Research limitations/ implications – While the sample size was chosen to conduct a mixed methods study that would explore how the position of a social media expert in an organization such as the library facilitates or prevents the exchange of social media information, we acknowledge the need for large-scale empirical studies that can substantiate our findings in larger and more diverse samples. Originality/ value – This unique study explores how the role and position social media experts in Belgian public libraries can support, or impede, librarians in learning how to deal with social media. This study is useful for other public libraries who want to implement social media, establish a social media policy and/ or provide social media training.
|Keywords|| WEAK TIES, WEB 2.0, PUBLIC-LIBRARIES, FRAMEWORK, TECHNOLOGY, ORGANIZATIONS, ADOPTION, INNOVATIONS, WEB 2.0, DIFFUSION, PUBLIC-LIBRARIES, WEAK TIES, DIFFUSION, INNOVATIONS, ADOPTION, ORGANIZATIONS, TECHNOLOGY, FRAMEWORK|