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Posts Tagged ‘LIANZA’


Below is a response I posted to Paul Reynolds on one of the Library Ning sites. It was in response to a discussion we are having about the viability of the Ning, with Ning withdrawing from providing free networks. Paul has said he would be happy to contribute towards making the site a Premium site, but would need to see that it is working and worth it. Current traffic would say it wasn’t.

This has led me to ponder yet again the nature of the New Zealand library profession and social networking.  I confess to feeling a little disillusioned and despondent as to where we as a profession are currently, especially with regards to using sites like this and the Ning.

“I can understand why LIANZA would want to concentrate on the LIANZA website. I haven’t heard anything about misgivings/apathy from head office about Ning.

That being said, I despair at times at the lack of professional discourse that is running through the profession. I am beginning to wonder if the lack of discussion here and on other similar sites is a symptom of a wider malaise within the body.

When I have raised the lack of content here and in other places the response I have received has not been encouraging. One reason given for a lack of uptake in the use of Social Networking sites like this is that the list serve [NZ-Libs] works well for people. Yet even on that, apart from maybe one or two bursts in a year, there is no great discourse on professional issues.

I have said it previously. Inactivity breeds inactivity. And live by the maxim Participate or perish. Our burgeoning community is perishing.  

So do we as Kiwi Librarians have nothing to say? Are we too small as a profession to engage professionally? Are we really a professional body, or just a group of people working in libraries?

 I would love to see this community, heck any community, up and running as a vibrant engaging place where librarians connect. I am just getting disillusioned with whether we here, or LIANZA at the LIANZA website will be able to create it.”

Are we too busy? Or is that a cop out and really we just don’t give a high enough value to professional discourse? Or do we prefer to do our networking face to face? And does that mean that those like myself who don’t have such an opportunity, by dint of being in very small centres, will miss out?

I really, really want to know.  Do we as a profession value professional discourse? Are we big enough to maintain a regular discourse? Are we a profession that deals with information and technology, or are we simply a bunch of people who shelve and issue books?

You can answer me here. Or answer me there.   Please. Don’t make me beg 🙂

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More developments since yesterday. I was glad to see the strong response put out from LIANZA last night, and to see Barbara on One News.

Also I was glad to hear us on National Radio this morning.

Library And Information Association Of New Zealand Opposes Library Charges

27 January 2010

LIANZA, The Library and Information Association of New Zealand Aotearoa, opposes Tauranga City Council’s current proposal to charge for adult loans in an effort to reduce the rates contribution to library services.

LIANZA believes that public libraries have a fundamental role in the development and maintenance of a democratic society supporting culture, education, and economic and personal development.

Barbara Garriock, LIANZA President is concerned that other public libraries may also be facing increased charges and budget cuts.

“In hard times Council officers and elected representatives need to focus on services that will provide the most benefit to their community.”  Ms Garriock says.

Recognising that in times of economic stringency there is a tendency to look for ways of raising funds for public services other than by taxation, the Association asserts that it is essential that a basic level of public library provision be retained in accordance with its Standards for Public Libraries, 2004:

1. Public libraries should be free and universally available.

2. Public library services should be available free of charge, except such charges as defined in the Standards.

The UNESCO Public Library Manifesto (1994) states that “Constructive participation and the development of democracy depend on satisfactory education as well as on free and unlimited access to knowledge, thought, culture and information.” 

Public library usage in this country is amongst the highest in the western world and LIANZA opposes any limitations on access to collections by New Zealanders due to user charges.

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I have a couple of questions for you.

How many people out there read the monthly LIANZA newsletter Library Life? I sometimes do and sometimes I don’t. I will print it out, but it’s just not the same. I miss the hardcopy put on the staffroom table, which was often browsed by more than LIANZA members.

Also how many people read the recently released  volume of the New Zealand Library & Information Management Journal electronically? How many people are waiting for the hardcopy? I browsed the content s page, but will wait to receive my copy in the mail before properly sitting down to read it. 🙂

If you think that’s odd for a technogeeky librarian, who is into digital publications, your probably right. But you see I don’t particularly like reading articles in PDF on the computer screen. I just don’t get as much from it. Which is  why I am hanging out for decent Ereaders to come to New Zealand.

Below is a poll, or leave a comment, but I would be interested to know what others thought about this. 🙂

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