Annoyed Librarian
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Rambling about San Diego

I wish I could say it was easy to tell which conferences were boring by the tweets associated with the conference. If that’s the case, pretty much all conferences are boring.

Between engagements, I brought up the ALA Midwinter mobile app, which provides a lot of useful information, plus the conference Twitter feed.

We find one librarian who is very excited…about luncheon opportunities and possible swag. I can understand wanting a good free lunch, but why anyone would want to leave the conference with the stuff the vendors pass out is beyond me. They’ll spend $50 taking you to dinner, then hand you a plastic pen at the booth. Go with the $50 dinner.

There are also numerous people sharing important news with us. “Had a great time!” That’s pretty exciting. Thanks for sharing!

Others ask deep philosophical questions, the kind you might find on bumper stickers or coffee mugs. “Why is it that every meeting I have is as far away as possible from the one previous to it.” My guess is, they’re not, and that person is just desperate to find something witty to say. Better luck next time!

At first glance, I found this one utterly pointless as well. “Quick brunch at Pappalecco in Little Italy after church. Wonderful latte and sandwich!” Then I realized I was a bit peckish, and a wonderful latte and sandwich sounded delicious.

They were.

We hear that the “Library of Congress has a beautiful exhibit!” It’s true. Your tax dollars at work!

ALA is all about advocacy this year. “400-quotation database on libraries available at ilovelibraries.org – available for advocacy at your library.” Nothing like some good quotes about libraries to excite people. Seems about as useful for advocacy as creating a Facebook group. Viva la revolution!

“Came in late to Tech Trends, but saw little relevance to public libraries. We still need tech literacy & gadgets more than data.” Apparently someone hasn’t drunk the kool aid.

“It is permissible to let a thought go unexpressed.” Wait, isn’t this the anti-Twitter philosophy? This person must be an impostor.

“Of course some of it is bad, but some online writing, esp. on tech, is much better and more timely than articles in journals.” This sounds like a quote from something I didn’t attend. Obviously nonsense. Tech writing is about the worst writing online, full of mindless enthusiasm and knee-jerk hyperbole. Tech writers make library bloggers seem almost calm and sane.

Another profound quote: “We should be less focused on collecting things and more focused on providing what our customers need.” But what if “customers” need the things we collect?

That was about all I could stand. The really annoying thing about this conference is that there isn’t anything really annoying going on. Mostly it’s just business meetings and discussions sessions and the ALA Council.

Speaking of, I’m still waiting to see if the ALA Council will pass the proposed resolution urging Congress to pass the DREAM Act. Considering the DREAM Act has already failed and has zero chance of being passed by a Republican-controlled congress, it seems like the perfect ALA Council resolution, irrelevant and unlikely.

They also have a proposed resolution urging the Library of Congress to stop blocking Wikileaks on staff computers, which I think has already been done. It also urges all libraries to link to Wikileaks, because Wikileaks is all about intellectual freedom and the right to know. You know, because information should be free, and mean governments should have no secrets. Those SRRT folks are at it again. Another urgent problem solved by the ALA Council!

Oy. More later, perhaps.

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Comments

  1. will manley says:

    Thanks for the report AL. As I get set to head for the First Tee, it’s good to know that I’m not missing anything at ALA Midwinter.

  2. Fat Guy says:

    I can see there’s just sooo much to be annoyed with at a luxury hotel in sunny San Diego in the dead of winter. Now go sip your latte while the rest of us do actual work.

  3. Will Marlow says:

    I was impressed (and overwhelmed) by the sheer volume of ALA tweets with the hashtag #alamw11.

    According to Twitter search results, in the last 18 hours there were 1,600+ Tweets with the ALA hashtag. I’d like to see how many of the attendees were contributing to that number…

  4. teenlibrarian says:

    I didn’t know how annoying librarians were until I started to read their tweets.