A network for new and aspiring library professionals
On Saturday, half of team NLPN enjoyed a jaunt to the might Toon to attend Library Camp at Newcastle public library. Spying Durham Cathedral and the Angel of the North from the train window made the early Saturday start worthwhile as did the company of @epicbayj and @lumeijueiro !
It was great to see how Newcastle City library has been transformed after it’s refurbishment a few years ago. It was a bright, welcoming and busy space – and not just because of all the library campers milling around.
The first session for us considered methods for maintaining strong communication between full and part time staffing teams. It was positive that many of the methods discussed were approaches that I’m already familiar with from my own workplace, but the abiding message was that if something is worth communicating, it is worth saying more than once, through more than one medium. A straightforward tip that I could see being easily implemented is recording training sessions that take place mid-week so that they are available for weekend staff to watch and benefit from.
The afternoon session saw us getting to grips with Google glass, getting a better idea of how it works and even trying on! Despite this gadgetry, the most illuminating session focused on surveillance and online security.
This session considered what libraries can do to protect users, the role of the librarian in educating users about how they are tracked, and whether this is reprehensible or convenient, especially since library services often benefit from the data and information they gather about users. The discussion focused on the right to be forgotten and search engine removal requests, considering both the limitations of this and the potential for censorship. There were no clear cut answers to many of the discussion points; raising awareness to allow users to make their own decisions seemed to be the fence some ended up sitting on!
As usual, Sue Lawson and Richard Veevers did a sterling job in bringing librarians together from across sectors, grades and locations for informal and thought-provoking discussions. As someone working in HE, I found it particularly useful to get the insight of many public librarians; this is not a perspective I encounter regularly through events and training I attend via my day job, but it’s a good way to be reminded of the bigger picture.
Thanks from team NLPN to the organisers, and thanks to Newcastle – our fave library camp location yet!