Conferences

Publishers Weekly Planning First pre-ALA Supplement

For the first time, PW will publish a special supplement ahead of this year's American Library Association's annual conference set for June 23-28 in New Orleans. The pre-ALA issue will be published May 30 and will include features on library funding, the e-book loan controversy and an overview of the meeting program, in addition to other pieces on the show. "Our subscribers have been telling us they want more coverage of the library market and the ALA supplement is part of our commitment to act on that request," said PW publisher Cevin Bryerman who will handle advertising inquiries at [email protected] Andrew Albanese will be overseeing the supplement's editorial content and can be reached at [email protected]

SXSW 2011: The Year of the Librarian

By Phoebe Connelly in the Atlantic

"Tech for tech's sake is over. In a year when social media is helping inform our coverage of everything from political upheaval in the Middle East to the unfolding nuclear disaster in Japan, your app better do something more than be cool.

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TED, Known For Big-Idea Conferences, Pushes Into Education

This will be interesting to watch develop. I love TED talks.

From the Chronicle of Higher Ed
March 2, 2011, 12:36 pm

By Jeff Young

Long Beach, Calif.—The leaders of the annual TED conference, known for featuring short, carefully prepared talks on big ideas about technology and society, hope to apply their approach to education.....Read more here.

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Out with The Old, In With the New 'Young Hip Librarians'

SAN DIEGO — The American Library Association capped its national conference at the San Diego Convention Center by honoring creators of children's books. One recurring theme at the conference was how libraries stay relevant in the lives of young readers as many librarians near retirement.

Stand-up comedian Meredith Myers (above) is part of a new group of young librarians who are busting stereotypes about who is a "typical librarian."

“I think we need cool librarians,” said Myers, who sports a stylish hat, bright red hair and black biker boots. “Image is important. (Younger patrons) are more likely to ask for help from people who they can identify with.”

Myers is part of a growing number of young librarians who are busting stereotypes of the “typical librarian” and forcing change within their own libraries. They said it is not uncommon today to see librarians wearing Doc Martin boots, tattoos and dreadlocks. And some new librarians say they are more interested in pop culture than historical text.

Library Leaders Face Tough Choices

America's libraries are being forced to redefine and advocate for their continuing value in society, and library hours are being cut when library use is at an all time high.

At ALA Mid-Winter in San Diego, Roberta Stevens, President of the American Library Association, talks about the organization's plans to address challenges and identify solutions.

When asked how libraries are faring around the country, she answered, “The good news is that there is no longer any question about why do we have libraries, why do we need them.” On the other hand, she said, “Just like other parts of the country, libraries are being affected by cuts in funding.”

Stevens said libraries are doing more with less already. “I think at some point you can reach the juncture where you can’t do any more than you’re doing. What libraries have been doing is what you have seen in San Diego, cuts in hours to accommodate the lower budget. But the problem is every time you cut hours, you’re shutting out thousands and thousands of people.”

Cycling for Libraries

Librarians on bikes, unite! From the website:

We (Finnish librarian Kai Halttunen, Tampere University) – me with a team of keen library lovers – will arrange this tour supported by library associations and collaborators in different countries and I am sure it will be an unforgettable experience for all you who like cycling, get-together and passionate and visionary conversations about a variety of library topics.

Our aim is also to bring libraries, their highly proactive staff and the work all librarians do more to publicity and media. We mean to make this public by using internet and social media and making a documentary about how we handle this challenge of cycling 650 km --from Copenhagen to Berlin in spring-summer 2011 (We leave Copenhagen 28.05.2011 and arrive in Berlin 05.06.2011; 6th and 7th of June we have programme in Berlin).

We all know that good ideas are generated in cafes and hallways and not so much on lecture halls’ benches or somewhere we expect them to generate. That is why we go to this courageous venture of cycling about 10 days together – to see what kind of spectacular performances the library staff can reach if they just wish to. This is a challenge for you, and I hope that you accept it. Let’s go cycling for libraries! The participation is open to all librarians and everybody interested in the field of libraries.

Stay tuned by following this site or our Facebook page.

New Zealand Librarians Meet...and Eat

With 6500 meals to prepare this week for the largest conference to be held in Dunedin for about three years, University of Otago (NZ) catering staff are busy. Otago U website reports on culinary preparations for the Conference.

They are catering for about 630 at the Library and Information Association of New Zealand's centennial conference - more than 500 delegates and about 90 exhibitors - producing breakfasts, morning and afternoon teas, lunches and cocktail event food.

That included catering to more than 80 vegan, lactose-intolerant and gluten-intolerant people with specialised dietary requirements, University Union general manager Stephen Baughan said yesterday.

The conference, spread over several university lecture theatres, began on Sunday and finishes today.

Another article on the conference profiles a former New Zealand national librarian, Mary Ronnie, now in her eighties, and still doing her Scottish dancing. Ms Ronnie emphasised she was optimistic that public libraries - and books - would still be going strong in New Zealand in another 100 years.

A recent visit to a city public library had confirmed that it was filled with members of the public, and this was a good sign for the future.

Internet Librarian Streaming

From Roy Tennant:
Didn't make it to Internet Librarian 2010 in person? Watch Internet Librarian Keynote Address online.

Blatant Berry Bottom Line

In leafing through the issue of Library Journal from earlier this month, the latest John Berry article made me sit up in my seat. Entitled “Half Way to ALA”, he discusses the true cost of conference attendance in terms of dollars and (more importantly, in my estimation) professional advancement.

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'LJ,' 'SLJ' Virtual eBook Summit Draws 2,500 Attendees

Calvin Reid from Publishers Weekly reports that the one-day online event was extremely successful. The Summit featured a keynote by technologist Ray Kurzweil and more than 15 hours of presentations, "E-Books: Libraries at the Tipping Point" focused on every aspect of the developing e-book market and its impact on public, school, and academic libraries. Held September 29 and organized by Library Journal and School Library Journal, the virtual "summit" on e-books certainly delivered on its promises.

The web meeting brought together more than 40 respected experts (including this reporter and PW features editor Andrew Albanese) from across the spectrum of library professionals, academia, and tech journalism as well as the LJ/SLJ staff. An audience of more than 2,500 digital attendees (representing more than 800 public libraries, over 400 academic libraries, and more than 400 school libraries) attended the one-day virtual conference. Ian Singer, v-p, content & business development for Media Source, parent company of LJ and SLJ (no longer affiliated with PW), said the conference was meant to address the fact that "public and school libraries are struggling to understand the e-book industry. We wanted to bring libraries and publishers together and offer a huge knowledge dump about what e-books are and what the challenges are for libraries."

Did you attend? What did you think of the event?

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