My Blog Post of Awesome Things for #alamw13

Its not long before we’re all at ALA Midwinter and Making it Happen and Partying Hard. As usual, I have a long list of meetings to attend all day, every day. I won’t bore you with all the details of my entire schedule, but I will give you some highlights of things that you should know about , that are open to everyone, and that you might want to add to yours. You should know that many of these links are to Facebook Events because that’s the only place they exist but you can find many of them on ALA Conference Scheduler (which is awesome for putting together your conference schedule)

Think Tank Thursday Night
For all you folks who Made it Happen and came to ALAMW13 on Thursday night, this event is for you. This is the ALA Think Tank meetup and social event to start out the conference right. Come out to Linda’s Tavern at 7pm and have a drink and meet other folks from the ALA Think Tank live and in person and some of the Seattle Natives at this neighborhood dive bar.

LITA Happy Hour
LITA is always one of the best networking opportunities at ALA. It’s happening at the Elephant and Castle from 5:30-7:30. The librarians involved in LITA are doing some of the most exciting and innovative work in library technology. You probably read their blogs or follow them on twitter or you might have read their books! Come out and meet all these fines folks in person.

Emerging Leaders Social
This is a great opportunity to join Emerging Leaders past and present at the Emerging Leaders Meetup at the Elephant and Castle from 8-10pm right after the LITA. This is an excellent opportunity to network with other ELers who are emerging, have emerged, or will emerge eventually. If you haven’t been an emerging leader and you’re interested in learning more about this program, or if you want to just come and have some drinks with some excellent librarians, you are also welcome to join us.

Tumblr Meetup
What is Tumblr? Do you Tumbl? No, I don’t get on it much neither and I don’t actually know a whole lot about it. I do know that a lot of awesome people are on Tumblr and I want to meet them all. If you want to meet all the Tumblarians IRL then you should come to this event.

LBB Meeting
If you are a fan of BoingBoing.net you should come to a meeting that showcases the ALA and Librarianship’s involvement in this great blog. You can meet fellow Happy-Mutants, get involved in building up this group of librarians, and hear about great things in libraries around the world who are doing wonderful things and popular culture-related issues (such as net neutrality, steampunk, etc.), as well as makerspaces and digital learning labs. We guarantee you’ll hear about at least one great project another library is implementing that will inspire you. This meeting happens early on Saturday at 8:30am so get ready!

Ignite
This year at Midwinter, the ALA Think Tank is excited to announce the first ever Ignite ALA! It will be held in the Networking Uncommons from 12-1 on Saturday. If you’re not familiar with Ignite, Ignite is a geek event that is being held in over 100 cities worldwide. At the events Ignite presenters share their personal and professional passions, using 20 slides that auto-advance every 15 seconds for a total of just five minutes. Many of these presentations are recorded live and broadcast or archived to be shared around the world. This will be ALA’s first ever attempt to Ignite our passions for our profession!!

NMRT Social
If you are a new member to the ALA or this is one of your first conferences, I know it can be overwhelming. The New Member Round Table is here to help you out. This social event at the Dragon Fish Café from 5:30-7:30 will help you find out more about the organization and meet some great people.


Tweet-up

This year’s tweetup will happen directly in-between the NMRT Social at 5:30 and the EveryLibrary/librarianwardrobe.com After-hours party at 10pm at the Baltic Room. Come and hang out with other Twitter folks and have a drink and maybe dance a little.

ALAMW Afterhours
This is one of the most entertaining nights of the conference when everyone comes together and has a good time. You have a great opportunity to meet a lot of fun people who are just out to have a good time. This event is brought to you by EveryLibrary and Library Wardobe at 10pm at Linda’s Tavern.

Young Turks UNITE!
Young Turks Unite! is an anti-reception for the critical thinkers, the up-and-comers, and the true movers and shakers (LJ ratings do not apply) of the library world at the Diller Room at 9pm on Sunday. If you have a fire in your heart and want to shake up the universe of what we call librarianship, you are invited to join a group of like-minded, passionate professionals for an evening of conversation, provocation, and perhaps even revolution.


Maker Monday

Maker Monday is an exciting day filled with all kinds of events and activities to help you get informed and involved in the latest from the makerspace movement in librarianship. It also provides a chance for successful programs to share their stories and for librarians to meet fellow makers.

Every Library Board Meeting
As a Board Member of EveryLibrary, I highly encourage you all to attend our first Board Meeting. If you’re not familiar with EveryLibrary, “it is the first and only national organization dedicated exclusively to political action at a local level to create, renew, and protect public funding for libraries of all types. We provide tactical and operational support to local voter awareness campaigns, seed and sustaining monies to local ballot committees and PACs, as well as conduct direct voter advocacy in support of library taxing, bonding, and referendum.” Basically, its the very first library PAC!


ALA Council

I do have to plug ALA Council too. Even if you’re not officially on Council, you should remember that ALA is a member driven organization. If you want to see who’s driving, you should come to council and watch how it works. You can see memorial resolutions, dues increases, and a variety of other issues being discussed. I promise that only half of the councilors will try to talk you into running for council.

ALA Council Forum
I know that Aaron Dobbs would say that everyone should go to this so I’ll say it too. The Council Forum is the behind the scenes and nitty-gritty of ALA Council. This is where a lot of the real debate and the real compromise happens. If you really want to see what makes ALA Council run, you should check this out. It would be absolutely amazing to not just have ALA councilors here so that they hear some voices of reason! Come in a speak your mind.

That’s my list of stuff that I’m inviting you to join me at. What are you doing?

library advocacy 2

Ignite Sessions at #ALAMW13

Ignite ALAThis year at Midwinter, the ALA Think Tank is excited to announce the first ever Ignite ALA! If you’re not familiar with Ignite, Ignite is a geek event that is being held in over 100 cities worldwide. At the events Ignite presenters share their personal and professional passions, using 20 slides that auto-advance every 15 seconds for a total of just five minutes. Many of these presentations are recorded live and broadcast or archived to be shared around the world. This will be ALA’s first ever attempt to Ignite our passions for our profession!!

We are looking for around 8-10 presenters on any number of topics. These topics can be library related, or just something that you are passionate about. Maybe you have a presentation that you already gave, one that you are working on, or something that wasn’t accepted for a full ALA Session? This is your shot to debut the most radical or passionate idea you have and Ignite your passion in the rest of our profession!

If you think you have what it takes, all you need to do is leave a comment below with your name and topic. Then, put together your deck of 20 slides that advance every 15 seconds and start practicing. The Ignite session will be held in the Networking Uncommons on Saturday at Noon at ALA Midwinter.

For more information about Ignite in general, take a look at their website for more details and to see who else has signed up, take a look at our Facebook event page or the Networking Uncommons page for ALAMW13

Presenters and Topics (so far)

JP Porcaro – Something Awesome TBA
Angie Manfredi – YA Fiction
Beth Hereford Patin – Libraries: Information’s First Responder
Kate Kosturski – ALA CraftCon
Patrick Sweeney – The Story Sailboat
Tom Bruno – How To Change All The Things: A #MakeItHappen 2012 Retrospective
K.G Schnieder- Radical Optimsim
Amy Buckland- Doing Things that Scare You

If you’re looking for a good explanation of the why and how of giving an Ignite talk, then take a look at this presentation by O’Reilly author Scott Berkun. He does a great job of summarizing what can be achieved in five minutes with twenty slides. Here’s a short video to share:

Library advocacy 3

The Biggest Thing to Happen to Library Advocacy EVAR!!

Chrastka is a baller

Unless you’ve been under a rock the last month or so, you’ve heard about EveryLibrary. This is probably one of the most exciting developments in library advocacy since Andy Woodworth got the Old Spice guy to talk about libraries.

EveryLibrary is a PAC (Political Action Committee) that functions to support library initiatives at the ballot box. In case you don’t know what a PAC is or the larger Super PAC, you can watch Stephen Colbert brilliantly explain it on the Colbert Report and the Daily Show. If that’s not your thing, here is a video that explains them.


THIS WILL NEVER WORK WITHOUT YOUR SUPPORT

Basically, what this means for us librarians is that we can now have the power of presidential election kind of money and resources behind our ballot initiatives for our libraries. Can you imagine what would happen if we raised millions of dollars for our campaigns like the Presidential Super PACs do for theirs? We would most likely never have to worry about another underfunded library again.

You might ask yourself though… Why doesn’t ALA do this? Or doesn’t ALA already do this kind of lobbying? Well, the short answer is no, they can’t and because I’m not smart enough to explain it all myself, I copied the information from the EveryLibrary website below to explain it.

EveryLibrary grew out of the need for a politically active organization dedicated exclusively to supporting local library initiatives at the ballot box. Many library associations – both at the national and state level – are organized as 501(c)3 educational associations. Current law and regulations prohibit these associations from engaging in direct voter advocacy or funding political campaigns. As a 501(c)4 organization, EveryLibrary can act where these associations cannot. The opportunity to fundraise and directly support library ballot initiatives will be unique in the library world.

In each election cycle, tens of millions of dollars are at stake for libraries. From bonding for new or remodeled building projects to changing milliages, levys, or tax rates that impact staffing, collections, programs, and services, libraries are on the ballot. EveryLibrary needs just 50K to Make It Happen, they need our help!

EveryLibrary will help libraries:

  • Assist libraries in both the pre-filing and campaign stages of an initiative.
  • Provide strategic consulting services, voter segmentation advice, and assistance in developing ballot language.
  • Conduct feasibility studies and assist in setting up a local committee or PAC.
  • Develop a fundraising strategy for your local committee or PAC.
  • Train volunteers in voter education and get-out-the-vote techniques.


  • During the run of a campaign, EveryLibrary can:

  • Continue technical and capacity-building consultancy.
  • Provide direct financial support to the local committee or PAC in seed-stage or sustaining levels of support.
  • Conduct direct voter education and get-out-the-vote efforts.


  • So what can you do to help out?
    There are a lot of things, but really, EveryLibrary needs to raise 50k to start the PAC and start helping libraries by November. This is the most important thing you can do right now. Give $5.00 if you can. Give more if you can do that! Share the links with your friends if you can’t give money. Ask your friends and family to give or maybe host a fundraiser. Remember that politicians who oppose libraries are raising MILLIONS of dollars. EveryLibrary is just asking for 50K. We have the power to make this happen.


    You can hear the Founder of the Library PAC, John Chrastka, talk about EveryLibrary with Steve Thomas on his podcast via the link below.

    John Chrastka Talking about EveryLibrary

    Bay Area Librarians are Partying Like Whoa!

    One of the things I’ve been really excited to see is the growth of so many socializing opportunities in the Bay Area for librarians. Most of these gathering are organized on Facebook or some other social media but occasionally they’re posted on Calix (California library listserv). These kinds of events help bring together our community of professionals and paraprofessionals and I hope will allow us to come together when we need support from our peers. I wrote about how important this was a couple of posts ago and it’s great to see it continue with so many other groups.

    Because there are so many groups of librarians (what do you call a group of librarians?), this time I’m going to give you some links to the organizers of these events. Here they are in no particular order.

    Information Amateurs Social Club
    The information Amateurs Social Club is not to be confused with the Information Professionals Social Club although I do generally confuse them. From what I understand, they were both created at almost the exact same time without any coordination and it just happens to be a coincidence. This social club though, focuses on gatherings in the San Francisco area while some of the others focus on other areas of the bay.

    Information Professionals Social Club
    This group was started by an SJSU SLIS alumna and student because they wanted to promote interaction among Bay Area Information Professionals. They are really striving to encourage some more networking between information professionals, new graduates, and students. They organize a lot of informal meet-ups that are designed to stimulate conversation, share employment experiences and educational advice, and above all make new friends.

    Bay Area Librarians
    I’m excited that I started the BAL Page on Facebook and I got to watch it grow to over 400 professionals, para professionals, and students. We have more admins now and quite a few different people starting meetups. Although, Facebook changed some of the settings for Pages and in retrospect I wish I would have made this a group instead of a page. Because I live in the Peninsula area, this group’s meetups are usually near me along the Peninsula. Specifically, we have meetups every Thursday in Redwood City at the Peninsula Yacht Club for anyone who is interested in relaxing and having a cheap drink. if anyone wants to take a swing at making another meetup elsewhere from this page, let me know and I’ll make you an Admin.

    SLIS Students and Alumni
    This page just brings people together who went to San Jose SLIS and want to connect. Occasionally I have seen some organization of some meetups and networking events. Typically, from what I’ve seen, these events focus on getting students connected with professionals to help them build a bigger network and gain some opportunities for mentorship etc…

    Silicon Valley Librarian Network
    This group is all about bringing together people in the Silicon Valley who are in the librarian profession. It’s a new and pretty loose group right now but I’ve seen them share some good stuff. Basically, they just want to create some opportunities for more folks to have some drinks together. I strongly support this of course.

    Librarians Getting Down with Their Bad Selves
    I love the title of this group. This meetup group focuses on South Bay Librarians who want to… Well… Get down with their Bad Selves. I don’t think I need to explain too much more honestly. This one is also fairly new so I’m excited to see what comes out of it.

    Bay Area SLIS People
    The problem people had with the San Jose SLIS Students and Alumni page is that San Jose SLIS students are spread out all over the world. This means that when you try to organize something, it goes out to librarians who couldn’t possibly make it from the east coast for an hour or two meetup. In fact, I got marked as spam for inviting those folks to some of my meetups (Oops, sorry team). Anyway, if you want a group that focuses on us locally, check out this page.

    While I love that we have so many folks dedicated to having people come together to network and socialize, I am a little worried at the same time. There are so many niche groups networking here that we might be working counter to what I get excited about when I think of meetups. That is, I like that we are all meeting from across groups and organizations and across our niches and specialties. I strongly believe that it is really important that we all come together as one profession and work meet each other and create a stronger alliance of professionals. I would love to see all of our groups coming together more often and a lot more crossover from all the groups to create something awesome in the San Francisco Bay Area.

    Afterwork Library Meetup at the Yacht Club

    These meetups are weekly events so feel free to come out every Thursday! I promise to only invite folks every other week from now on since I got marked as spam for these invites. If you don’t want to be included in these community building and networking opportunities, please let me know and I won’t send you an invite anymore.

    Once again we’ll start by having our drinks at the Peninsula Yacht Club and see what happens. Last two weeks we wound up at the Living Room doing some Karaoke and the week before we moved over to
    Palo Alto’s Rose and Crown to meet with some other librarians where we joined forces and had a great time. There’s plenty of places within walking distance if we get hungry or want to party in a different scene and we can always order something at the club.

    These events help us build some library community in the Bay Area so we can do awesome things in the future.

    For those of you who don’t know about PYC, its pretty much a dive bar. The best dive bar in the bay area though! While it is usually
    a private club, you don’t have to be a member to come because you’ll be my guest for the meetup. Just show up, let me know your there, write your name on the guest list, and have a drink!

    You can just come as you are and drinks at PYC are $2-4 and there’s no tipping because I’m bartending. It’s gonna be fun and cheap – everything a librarian loves.

    If we wind up moving on to somewhere, we’ll post something to the Facebook page so people can find out where we went.

    Peninsula Yacht Club
    1536 Maple Street
    Redwood City, CA 94063

    Facebook Event Page