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Title: Taking the temperature of chat reference: An analysis of user complaints in the time of COVID-19
Authors: Crichton, Chad
Barrett, Kathryn
Keywords: Subject::Academic and research libraries
Subject::User experience
Subject::Library services
Issue Date: 25-Oct-2023
Publisher: International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA)
Series/Report no.: 88th IFLA World Library and Information Congress (WLIC), 2023 Rotterdam;Poster Sessions
Abstract: This poster will explore user complaints over the chat reference service offered by a large university consortium both before and during the COVID-19 pandemic. During the pandemic, chat reference services experienced a surge in demand but research is only beginning to explore how the crisis affected the topic of chats, the nature of discourse, and the experience of chat providers. To date, no research has been performed to investigate the underlying reasons for negative user sentiment and behaviours over chat. The research presented in our poster aims to fill this gap by analyzing user complaints within chat transcripts. What are typical user complaints? Did complaints increase during the pandemic? What have users been complaining about, and did the complaints vary by user type? Our research aims to address these questions and aims to understand how times of crisis affect reference services and front-line reference staff. The research presented focuses on how complaints highlight user needs and preferences with respect to library services and the challenges that users face with online teaching and learning. It will also address strategies to respond to complaints over chat and an understanding of how chat reference transcripts can be used to assess changing user needs.
Appears in Collections:World Library and Information Congress (WLIC) Materials

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