Going to ALA can be expensive and I know that there are many of you starving MLIS students out here who came to ALA on your own dime. There is also a buttload of unemployed librarians who paid their way to ALA, and even more folks whose library didn’t pay them for their trip out. There are many ways that you can save money at the conference by sharing hotels, taxis, and volunteering for passes into the conference, but did you know that you can also get books and prizes and eat and drink for free?
I’ve never eaten better than at an ALA conference and mostly I eat and drink for free! This is in large part due to my fantastic Think Tank team and the sharing of what’s happening at the conference. When one of use hears about something free we text each other and we all descend on the free goodies like a pack of vultures. Well… Now you can be a vulture too!
The vendors at the conferences want you to come and check out their products and they usually try to entice you with free food, drinks, and other good stuff. Mango Languages, for example, is keenly aware of the starving librarian and almost always has something delicious at their booth. However, the big problem is knowing where these events take place, so I am once again proposing a hashtag for all of us to share where we find the free stuff! So, whenever you find something free you can tweet about it and let some of these starving librarians in on the goods using the hashtag #ALAfree. Who knows? You might find out about some of the cool new stuff that our vendors are offering too!
If you are a vendor and want to let people in on the secret, don’t be shy about using the hashtag to entice these future customers to come and see your products and services with free good stuff.
So the ALA Think Tank sold out. But it’s cool, we do it for you.
Andrea Davis brought this to our attention. Mango Languages is holding a Mango Mania Competition at ALA Annual 2011. In order to enter the contest we had to submit a video all about where we would Mango. Luckily, our group had a little “unconference” trip to Tijuana at ALA Midwinter in San Diego and I filmed some awesome footage of that trip. So, basically, without even planning for it we already “Mangoed.” It’s interesting how these past unplanned #MIH shenanigans come back to work for us in strange ways. Here is our video entry –
I’m not going to lie to you. We do get some personal benefit out this competition. The swag and grand prizes are nice (iPad anyone?), but more importantly, the winning team gets credit towards our Mango Languages Subscription at our library system. In the financial state that we are living in now, I’m sure you can appreciate my desire to not get laid off and to be able to bring something back to my library system?
But anyway, down to the meat of this post… So how is this good for you? Well, Mango Languages is giving us some cash for our trip to ALA, but since we all already paid for our trips we decided to spend it on our ALA parties and other off-the-books kinda ALA Think Tank events. We want to make this the best ALA that we can for all the folks going out to the awesome city of NOLA so let us know what we can do to help make it EPIC for you!
We also wanted to get some good publicity for the Think Tank group that is doing all kinds of awesome stuff. The folks involved in the group are fantastic librarians who are doing great things! You can read about this group and what we want to do to revolutionalize from our manifesto. There are many amazing people involved in this group who are working to make conferences more beneficial to the members of ALA and to ensure that the organization is working for its members. You can be a part of this amazing group of awesombrarians by joining the ALA Think Tank group on Facebook.
If you want to follow our Mango shenanigans on the Facebook Fan Page (we had to make one as per the rules of the contest) you can check it out here – ALA Think Tank FB Fan Page