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LITA, LLAMA, ALCTS collaboration FAQ #3: finding your niche, serving personas, participatory communications

Fri, 2018-04-20 11:39

On February 23, I posted for discussion a proposal on a closer formal relationship between LITA, LLAMA, and ALCTS. That included an anonymous feedback form where you can ask questions, express feelings, et cetera. I will be collating and answering these questions every few weeks here on LITAblog (so please keep asking!).

Since that time I’ve gotten six (!) questions. I’m going to break them up across several posts; here are the first two.

[S]ince tech is such a big field…[t]here is quite a lot that is relevant to me [in LITA], but it is difficult to find sometimes within discussions….I’m worried about how much a merger with ALCTS and LLAMA would amplify this problem.

This is definitely a thing that’s on our minds as well. It can be hard to find your niche within an organization as large as ALA, and part of the role of the divisions is to make that easier; we want to make sure everyone would still be able to find their home.

In the near future, you should see a membership survey asking about what you find valuable in your LITA, LLAMA, and/or ALCTS membership. This, plus recent work by LITA and LLAMA to learn about our memberships (e.g. the LITA Personas Task Force), will guide our thinking on how a combined division could be structured in order to retain the touchpoints that are most valuable to people.

Combining divisions would also significantly reduce the amount of administrative overhead, which would free staff time to focus on member engagement — LITA Executive Director Jenny Levine has a lot of great ideas on that front that she doesn’t currently have time to implement.

How is combined LITA/ALCTS/LLAMA going to serve their unique personas?

This question included a lengthy set of follow-up questions and statements, including “I can see to some degree combining LITA and ALCTS; they are both technology-themed organizations”; “What was the result of the LITA personas study a few years back?”; questions about the benefit to LLAMA; and “Perhaps we should at least have a participative webinar in which LITA and ALCTS members can share their thoughts in a public forum”.

I will leave questions about the benefits of LLAMA for the LLAMA leadership to answer.

You can read a summary of the Personas TF work here on LITAblog, or the full report. One of our LITA personas is the administrative member. It turns out that people with titles like “Director of Libraries” or “Head of IT” make up a high percentage of LITA members; this is a group that came up through technology and loves their LITA network, but doesn’t always find the content they need today via LITA. A LITA/LLAMA connection makes a lot of sense for this group.

There are certainly LITA members who have no aspiration to be in leadership and thus might not get new opportunities via LLAMA, and that’s okay! Even as it is today, LITA has a lot of niches that aren’t relevant to all its members. For instance, our interest groups include Heads of Library Technology and E-Rate & CIPA Compliance – neither of them directly serve me (I’m not a head of IT or a public or school librarian), but they’re great resources for their members, and I’m very glad that we can provide those spaces for people who are engaged in those issues day-to-day.

In re the webinar, I enthusiastically agree. In fact, I think we should have a lot of participatory webinars. And social media conversations. And mailing list conversations. In fact, the whole leadership group agrees, and we’re putting together a communications working group right now. They’re going to be in planning mode until Annual, but after that they will be facilitating the interactive experiences you’re looking for.

The combination of prior research (like the Personas report); the member survey coming out soon; and these upcoming two-way conversations will allow the leadership group to identify what aspects of LITA, LLAMA, and/or ALCTS membership are most meaningful and valuable to people. That in turn will guide the answer to your question on serving unique personas. (And also non-unique ones; some of the LITA member personas are also major groups within LLAMA or ALCTS.) I’m extremely interested in hearing where people feel most at home in their divisions, so that we can maintain those aspects going forward — while also giving people the opportunity to access more content and a wider network if that’s helpful to them.

Categories: Library News

Congratulations to Heather Moulaison Sandy, winner of the 2018 LITA/Library Hi Tech Award

Thu, 2018-04-19 17:36

Heather Moulaison Sandy has been named the winner of the 2018 LITA/Library Hi Tech Award for Outstanding Communication in Library and Information Technology. Emerald Publishing and the Library and Information Technology Association (LITA) sponsor the Award, which recognizes outstanding individuals or institutions for their long-term contributions in the area of Library and Information Science technology and its application.

The Award Committee selected Moulaison Sandy because it was impressed with her extensive contributions to ongoing professional development across the discipline., which include five books and more than 25 peer-reviewed journal articles. Her work has been presented at over 100 local, national, and international venues in nearly 15 countries as well as at numerous online webinars and talks.

Moulaison Sandy is Associate Professor at the iSchool at the University of Missouri and works primarily at the intersection of the organization of information and the online environment. She is a recipient of this year’s JRLYA/YALSA Writing Award, as well as the ALISE/OCLC 2016 Research Grant and the ALA Carnegie Whitney  2016 grant.

An avid Francophile and traveler, she was named an Associated Researcher at the French national school for library and information science (Enssib) in 2014, and received a Fulbright Senior Scholar grant in 2008-2009 to teach at l’Ecole des sciences de l’information in Morocco. She holds a PhD in Information Science from Rutgers and an MSLIS and MA in French, both from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

When notified she was this year’s recipient, Moulaison Sandy said, “Receiving this award is a true honor, and I am thrilled to join the ranks of LITA/Library Hi Tech award recipients whose work I admire so much.” She will receive a citation and a $1,000 stipend.

Members of the 2018 LITA/Library Hi-Tech Award Committee are: Dr. Patrick T. Colegrove (Chair), Vanessa L. Ames (Past Chair), Holli Kubly, and Christina D. Mune.

Thank you to Emerald Publishing for sponsoring this award.


Categories: Library News

Jobs in Information Technology: April 18, 2018

Wed, 2018-04-18 15:15

New vacancy listings are posted weekly on Wednesday at approximately 12 noon Central Time. They appear under New This Week and under the appropriate regional listing. Postings remain on the LITA Job Site for a minimum of four weeks.

New This Week

Winona State University, Electronic Resources Librarian, Winona, MN

Santa Barbara City College, Librarian – (Web Services and eResources), Santa Barbara, CA

California Digital Library, Metadata Product Manager (career position), Oakland, CA

Visit the LITA Job Site for more available jobs and for information on submitting a job posting.

Categories: Library News

Don’t miss and JSON-LD – the repeat popular LITA webinar

Mon, 2018-04-16 11:54

It’s not too late to Sign up Now for the popular

Introduction to and JSON-LD
Instructor: Jacob Shelby, Metadata Technologies Librarian, North Carolina State University (NCSU) Libraries
Wednesday April 18, 2018, Noon – 1:30 pm Central time

Web search engines such as Google, Bing, and Yahoo are integral to making information more discoverable on the open web. How can you expose data about your organization, its services, people, collections, and other information in a way that is meaningful to these search engines? This session will provide an introduction to both and the JSON-LD data format.

View details and Register here.

Discover upcoming LITA webinars and web courses

The Privacy in Libraries, LITA webinar series continues with
Adopting Encryption Technologies
Wednesday April 25, 2018, Noon – 1:30 pm Central Time
Presenter: Matt Beckstrom

Register now to get the full series discounts, including recordings of the previous webinars or for any single series webinar.

Stay Safe From Ransomware, Hackers & Snoops by working on your IT Security

IT Security and Privacy in Libraries
Presenter: Blake Carver
Tuesday, May 1, 2018, 2:00 – 3:30 pm Central Time

Discover additional upcoming LITA webinars and web courses

Questions or Comments?

For all other questions or comments related to the course, contact LITA at (312) 280-4268 or Mark Beatty,

Categories: Library News

2018 LITA Election Results

Thu, 2018-04-12 10:29

Please join us in congratulating our newly elected LITA officers:

We thank everyone who stood for office in this election. Full ALA election results are available on the ALA website.

Categories: Library News

#LITAchat – ITAL March Issue and Submitting to the Journal

Tue, 2018-04-10 16:52

The March issue of ITAL is out now!

Information Technology and Libraries (ITAL) publishes material related to all aspects of information technology in all types of libraries. Learn more about submitting to the journal.

Join LITA members and colleagues on

Friday, April 13, 1:00-2:00pm EST

on Twitter to discuss the March issue of ITAL with editor Ken Varnum and the issue’s authors, and ask questions about submitting to the journal and the publication process.

To participate, launch your favorite Twitter mobile app or web browser and search for the #LITAchat hashtag and select “Latest” to follow along and reply to questions asked by moderator or other participants. When replying to discussion or asking questions, add or incorporate the hashtag #LITAchat.

See you there!

Categories: Library News

LITA Webinars Coming Soon!

Mon, 2018-04-09 12:32

Check out the line up and get details on all the upcoming LITA continuing education offerings. Here’s a listing of the session titles coming up first. Click through to see details and to register.

The Privacy in Libraries LITA webinar series of 4 more webinars, continues with:

Wrangling Library Patron DataWednesday April 11, 2018, 11:00 am – 12:30 pm Central Time
Presenter: Becky Yoose

And the series will continue on with:

Adopting Encryption Technologies
Wednesday April 25, 2018, Noon – 1:30 pm Central Time
Presenter: Matt Beckstrom

Register now to get the full series discounts or for any single series webinar.

Don’t miss your chance to attend the repeat of this popular LITA webinar.

Introduction to and JSON-LD – repeat
Presenter: Jacob Shelby
Offered: April 18, 2018

Stay Safe From Ransomware, Hackers & Snoops by working on your IT Security

IT Security and Privacy in Libraries
Presenter: Blake Carver
Offered: May 1, 2018

Discover additional upcoming LITA webinars and web courses

Questions or Comments?

For all other questions or comments related to the webinars, contact LITA at (312) 280-4268 or Mark Beatty,


Categories: Library News

Congratulations to Richard P. Smiraglia, winner of the 2018 LITA/OCLC Kilgour Research Award

Fri, 2018-04-06 13:43

Richard P. Smiraglia has been selected as the recipient of the 2018 Frederick G. Kilgour Award for Research in Library and Information Technology, sponsored by OCLC and the Library and Information Technology Association (LITA). Dr. Smiraglia is a Professor in the Knowledge Organization Research Group of the iSchool at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, a Visiting Professor for 2016-2017 at DANS – Data Archives and Networked Services (a Division of the Royal Netherlands Academy of the Arts and Sciences) and Editor-in-Chief of the journal, Knowledge Organization. He has also been on the faculties of the Palmer School of Library and Information Science at Long Island University (1992-2009), the School of Library Service at Columbia University (1986-1992) and was Music Catalog Librarian at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (1974-1986).

The Kilgour Award honors research relevant to the development of information technologies, especially work which shows promise of having a positive and substantive impact on any aspect(s) of the publication, storage, retrieval and dissemination of information, or the processes by which information and data are manipulated and managed. The winner receives $2,000, a citation, and travel expenses to attend the LITA Awards Ceremony & President’s Program at the 2018 ALA Annual Conference in New Orleans, Louisiana.

For over forty years, Professor Smiraglia has earned national and international recognition for his research and contributions in many significant areas, including bibliographic control, metadata, knowledge organization and especially in the areas of non-print and musical works. Smiraglia’s curriculum vitae enumerates over twenty-five monographs, over one-hundred scholarly and scientific research articles, as well as published reports, refereed presentations, doctoral advising, successful grantsmanship, and more which demonstrate his worthiness to be presented this distinguished award.

The Award Committee noted Professor Smiraglia’s many significant contributions. His most distinguished works are on the theory of instantiation and the growth of science in knowledge organization. His influential book, The Nature of a Work: Implications for the Organization of Knowledge (Scarecrow Press, 2001), has been invaluable in the era of data management, as instantiation (or “versioning”) is considered to be pressing importance to open data, data publication, and data reuse. Additionally, his service, since 2004, as Editor-in-Chief of the journal, Knowledge Organization, is commendable. He has nurtured the science of the organization of knowledge, leading this journal of the International Society for Knowledge Organization to become the primary source for disseminating research in both applied and theoretical knowledge organization and knowledge organization systems.

When notified that he had been selected, Smiraglia expressed, “I am humbled to receive this recognition by my peers and honored to be associated with the transformative legacy of Fred Kilgour.”

Members of the 2018 Kilgour Award Committee are Colby Riggs (Chair), Aimee Fifarek, Tabatha Farney, Amber Seely, Kyle W. Willis and Roy Tennant (OCLC Liaison).

Thank you to OCLC for sponsoring this award.

Categories: Library News