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So that others who might be planning library-themed unconferences may learn from the experiences of the organizers of Library Camp NYC, this page offers a history of how Library Camp NYC was planned, how it went off, and what lessons the organizers and attendees learned about such events.
Beginning in mid-October
, Steven Kaye starts posting messages on his blog,
The Corporate Librarian
, to see if anyone else was interested in having a library camp event in the New York metropolitan area.
In late October, Steven Kaye creates
on SurveyMonkey.com to narrow down potential dates and to identify potential topics and publicizes them on his blog and on various mailing lists.
In January, Rachel Watstein volunteers to help Steven Kaye find a location.
In April, Stephen Francoeur, a librarian at
, volunteers to see if his
would agree to sponsor and host the event. When the library administration and college conference space administrators agree, Francoeur, Kaye, and Watstein begin working together to plan the event.
By mid-May, it is agreed that the date for Library Camp NYC would be August 14, a decision that is based on: availability at Baruch College of meeting space; it was far enough off in time to allow for planning of the event; since it was in the summer, some might find it easier to attend during a month when they were on vacation; and it didn't compete with other major library conferences. As soon as the date is settled, the organizers begin sending out "save the date" messages on blogs and mail lists (see the
page for details).
Library Camp NYC wiki
is launched by Steven Kaye in mid-April but not publicized until the "save the date" messages went out in mid-May.
Beginning in May, the organizers seek out the advice and help of others who had attended previous library camps (notably,
Library Camp NYC news blog
is started on June 6. The intent of the blog is not to create a destination separate from the wiki but instead to create a flexible publishing platform. Using the free
was set up to be republished automatically on the
page (thanks to
for suggesting this idea). Using the free
service, a system for delivering blog posts via email subscription is set up (see the
In June, the organizers are spending a lot of time thinking about how the agenda for the day would be set. Among the ideas considered are:
having people write topics on index cards, which are collected
having a flip chart set up
using a whiteboard
By July, the organizers are having weekly conference calls to finalize details.
What It Was Really Like
This section will include a narrative of the day. It will also provide links to a page in the wiki for each session that was held. It will also provide links to any blog posts, etc. about Library Camp NYC.
post on the Thingology blog
on the session she moderated,
Library Thing for Libraries
, and on the one she attended,
Cataloguing and Weinberger
with notes from the three sessions he attended:
2.0 Show and Tell
Cataloguing and Weinberger
post on the YALSA blog
focusing on the session on blogging and microblogging
general post on Nylink Notes
on Library Camp NYC and notes from the 3 sessions she atttended:
2.0 Show and Tell
Chris Cormack wrote posts on each of the three sessions he attended:
Open Source Desktop:
Library Thing for Libraries:
on Library Camp NYC - see also the other posts she did with notes on various sessions
Jenna Freedman wrote a
about Library Camp NYC and posts about each of sessions she attended:
Blogging and Microblogging:
thanking his fellow organizers and the attendees
It took longer than we expected to collect the 30-some suggestions for discussion topics, merge ones that seemed to overalap in content, and then assign rooms based on expected attendance. Rather than wait until 20 minutes into the start of the day, it might be worth asking attendees at the registration table to fill out topic suggestion form right away. (Stephen Francoeur)
Although we accounted for vegetarian meals, perhaps we should have asked people when they registered on the wiki to let us know about any specific dietary concerns or restrictions: vegan, kosher, halal, allergies, etc. (Stephen Francoeur)
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