Conference Bits from Day 2

Some of this post is a repeat of what I put on the “official” blog, but some of it is new.

I went to the “Dinner with Colleagues” Weblog, Wikis, etc. group last night. We had a nice intimate group of eight. It was interesting because there was a wide range of blogging experience at the table, including one with no experience at all. We did not hold that against her though. One of my fellow ACRL Blogmates was there, Joy (Wanderings of a Student Librarian), and it was nice to finally meet another who is on this endeavor with me. We shared some of our frustrations and good experiences.

We had some interesting discussions and did not stick to blogging and technology. In fact, we stayed on that only briefly. We talked about all manner of topics concerning our libraries, our frustrations with the profession (if I hear about the “need for new librarians” one more time I am going to stand up and start screaming), and the way we would like to see things change. We talked about marketing, giving our customers what they want/need, food policies, and those crazy things that make our jobs so interesting.

The food was good, but the service left something to be desired. I was very pleased with the outing as the great company more than made up for the difference.

Yesterday at the Scholarship lunch the opening speaker made a point of talking about recruiting the next generation of librarians because of the “graying of the profession”. I almost lost my breakfast. I wanted to raise my hand and say, “Could you please qualify your statement by speaking on the large numbers of degreed librarians who are out of a job while we continue to push for larger classes in MLS programs, most of whom we will not have jobs for when they graduate?” Alas, I kept my hand in my lap and pondered the absurdity of it all. There have been many others who have addressed this issue much more eloquently than I so I bow to them.

Another interesting thing that I realized: Though this conference is marketed to be technology friendly, with the virtual conference and blog, some of the logistical things are askew of this goal. For instance, the only place that wifi is available is on the first floor of the conference building where very few of the meeting rooms are located. This makes it impossible to live blog or cast anything. The area in which the wifi does work contains no tables or chairs. So throughout the day, one can see people sprawled out on the hard floor typing away. Currently, I can not feel my butt. In fact, I am beginning to think that it does not exist at all. Oh well, at least there is wifi available. One has to be grateful for the little things.

–Jane, is grateful