Since the start of the year while I’m waiting for some pdfs to arrive for indexing, I’ve been dabbling in Twitter to see what kind of things get said about indexing and thinking about how to engage with non-indexers and the comments they make. However, it’s not always so easy to find tweets about indexing of books, or other paper-based resources, as the term ‘indexing’ has been hijacked by computer search engine indexers and the Twitter search facility doesn’t always help to discriminate between the two sorts. Maybe it’s time to reclaim the word for ourselves, but it might be too late.
I have found examples of the following behaviours:
- ‘The Washington Read’ – people looking themselves up in indexes and expressing their joy at finding themselves, for example
- Readers praising indexes for the choice of words they have found, for example
- Readers being frustrated because the book they are reading doesn’t have an index or they can’t find what they want in the index
- Emphasis on the value that a professional indexer can bring to a book and the book creation process for example
- Indexers advertising their skills by mentioning praise they’d got from clients, for example