Naked Librarians: ALA 10 Unplugged. #ala10 (Part I.)

I made several of these shirts in several different colors for the #ala10 conference and wore them all weekend. The QR Code does indeed work.
I made several of these shirts in several different colors for the #ala10 conference and wore them all weekend. The QR Code does indeed work.

Holy. Cats.
After much hemming & hawing, I made it to D.C. this past week for the American Library Association’s annual convention (or known in Twitterland as #ala10). Geeks, by the way, have NOTHING on the librarians ifyouknowwhatImean.
Now that the conference is over, there have been a trickle of posts coming out of the blogosphere about various libarians’ experiences with #ala10. A few worth mentioning are: I’ve been a passive fan girl of Andy Woodworth for some time now as he’s been super helpful in helping me with that murky area between the ending of my SLIS program and being thrust out to the world of librarianship with only a single arm floatie to prop me up. Andy wrote a breakdown of of the conference, specifically talking about social media advocacy. What I took away from this was, “STFU. You’ve got the tools, now USE THEM.”
P.C. Sweeney also wrote up his experiences for the PLA blog, which captured some of the spirit of the conference. While not a blog post, I DID ran into (almost literally) to one of the creators of Crave Libraries on the exhibit floor (and also scored a few cool buttons FTW!). Advocacy, awareness and grassroots-esque ideas while not heavy on the sessions list, were definitely huge topic of conversation at the dinners and social events.
A knockoff of my Moo cards that I printed at home since I forgot to order new batch before the conference. These were also a big hit at #ala10.

The second thing I want to tackle before I going my observations on the conference (and because I know how wordy I am, this will be a two part post, with the first discussing the positive and the second post why ALA (and by extension, most librarians) are still huddling in the 19th century) is the plethora forwarding and retweeting of a blog post by Bobbi Newman that she wrote last year called, Why I’m over people Twittering Conferences, Meetings.
A year ago I would have been nodding my head vigorously and shaking a fist while proclaiming, “Right on, sister!” but having attended three separate conferences within the last year, I can only respectfully disagree.
Here’s why:

  • If you’re Twittering, you’re not paying attention – multitasking is a myth The problem I have with this statement is that it’s flat generalization across learning and theory styles. Statistically, I do much better cognitively if I took notes and in lieu of having a pen/paper or my netbook with me, tweeted the information for later user. I also am a much better visual learner so I need something to connect the aural with the visceral. This also doesn’t take into account those who have smart phones (and thus there is an app for that productivity if you’re sans your netbook) or those with just text only options, so texting at leas to their Twitter accounts may be the only way to keep notes.
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