What is Library Camp?
A place for anyone interested in modernising and transforming libraries of all kinds to ask, connect, consider, converse, convince, create, debate, deliberate, disagree, discover, discuss, dream, enjoy, examine, explore, invent, investigate, laugh, learn, listen, plan, plot, question, reflect, relax, share, talk, teach, theorise, think, wonder …and to eat cake!
Email email@example.com to find out more...
A few weeks ago I applied for a grant from The Co-operative Bank’s Community Directplus Fund. I was rather pleased with the description of Library Camp and decided to post it here.
Library Camp is not an advocacy organisation for libraries. It does not seek to influence local or national policy, though its’ attendees may wish to. Its’ aim is to provide a politically neutral arena for debate. Library Camp is a place to facilitate the exchange of ideas between library enthusiasts. It will not censor any discussion and it will avoid being censored itself.
The sole financial activity of Library Camp is to fund unconferences about libraries, locally, nationally and, potentially, internationally. As the camps must be free to attend, costs are covered through donations and sponsorship. Public libraries, created to encourage literacy among those without access to literature, are recognised globally as a tool of empowerment.
Library Camp UK12 is the second national unconference for libraries. The event again will be volunteer directed and free to attend for anyone interested in the future of libraries.
The internet has wrought changes in academic, commercial and other privately funded libraries never before seen. Access to information is moving from scarcity to ubiquity
Public libraries are facing the greatest challenge in their 200 year history. Over the last 30 years book issues have halved and the percentage of the public who regularly use libraries has declined from 70 to 30%.
In spite of, perhaps because of, these difficulties it is evident quantitatively and qualitatively, that the public “love” libraries.
Library Camps are places to map the route between these two seemingly disparate views. Not only are the camps places to save libraries, but also places to return libraries to mass public use.
The £1,000 requested goes towards the £3,000 cost of Library Camp UK12. The Signing Tree conference centre was chosen to host the event. It is the social enterprise of the Birmingham Institute for the Deaf. The venue will provide catering and practical support for the organisers and the 200+ attending in October. This is the single biggest expense to Library Camp.
Printing costs, for the event programme, will be the second most significant cost. As promoting LibCampUK12 is mostly online, many internet/technical solutions are either free or of a low-cost. We recognise that this, almost exclusively, online promotion ignores many potentially interested parties. We expect to use traditional media in the future, increasing our expenditure considerably.
We have made fantastic progress in raising the funds required to host a successful camp. With individual donations ranging from a few pounds to £100 and sponsorships of £50 to £1,000, we are confident all costs will be met. Any excess funds will go to help local Library Camps meet their lower, but not insignificant costs. Library Camp received of a £400 grant from a LocalGovCamp unconference surplus.
Manchester, Leeds and Exeter have all held camps in free venues that would have benefited from a central fund to help provide teas, coffees, stationery etc.
Library Camp is an unconference, where participants decide on the programme at the beginning of the day. Read more about the unconference movement and the ideas behind them in Mob Rule by author, blogger and Library Journal Mover and Shaker, Michelle Boule.
Get an idea of what people want to talk about by checking out some of the session ideas listed on the wiki. Why not bite the bullet and add your own!
Not been to an unconference before? Not sure what to expect? The links below might make it all a bit clearer…
We decided it was about time we contacted all attendees of Library Camp UK12. We aren’t intending to bombard you with email updates. We will be in touch when we have enough useful information to pass on, or if we cock up on such a magnificent scale that it requires immediate attention!
We recognize noobs and leets* have different needs and the emails will be edited as required. A consequence of this editing and all your differing needs, is that our message can get confused. Do feel free to contact us on Twitter, Facebook or email if you have any questions and we will reply as soon as we can.
If you have any questions that you feel aren’t important enough to commit to emails, the wikis for previous camps are great places to look, get a feel for UnConferences, or read about past sessions and think about proposing your own session.
If you’re not comfortable about leading a session, another option could be to propose a subject you’d be interested in learning about. You may find others share your interest and would act as host.
We need more ideas - an unconference depends on your participation. Unconferences are particularly useful for librarians who, to cast aspersions, tend not to be the most gregarious of characters. When librarians are allowed to be expressive, as demonstrated at previous unconferences, the conversation goes beyond stimulating, becoming enthusing. If you have never stood in front of a room of strangers to chair a debate, here’s the perfect opportunity to break out of your comfort zone. If you don’t think you’ve anything non-trivial to contribute please bear in mind that some of the most engaging and illuminating sessions sprung from trivial observations.
We’ve received emails returning tickets, making our waitlist a much more attractive proposition. If you know of someone you think would benefit from a days unconferencing, pass them this link
Librarycamp’s waitlist is long! If you can’t make it, please contact us so we can match tickets and possible campers.
Thanks again for all your support, virtual and otherwise.
* google ‘em;)
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Good things come in threes and last week was a very good week for LibraryCamp with three bits of great news.
One: Thanks to over 40 super generous people we reached and our £1000 Crowdfunder target – and even went past it. The total is now a whopping £1067. Big, huge thanks to everyone who has donated or tweeted or in any way supported our pitch.
Although LibraryCmp is free to attend it ain’t cheap to put on. Conference venues, food, printing and lots of other little things all add up to nearly £2500.
We’ve been very lucky because we also have some great sponsors too:
Ken Chad Consulting
Running in the Halls
The success of the Crowdfunder appeal means we can also start a fund to support regional librarycamps across the country…
Two: LibraryCamp tickets went on sale.
Two and a half: LibraryCamp tickets sold out! If you missed out on tickets, don’t despair. You can try your luck on the EventBrite waiting list or, by far the best option, you can organise your own librarycamp – that way you’re guaranteed tickets!
Three: CILIP Update featured LibraryCamp in a news story That’s it in the picture in the post below…
The LibraryCamp 2012 wiki is now open for you to add session ideas, accommodation advice, travel tips, Friday night plans……
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“Have you heard the news?” He said with a grin*…we’re in the CILIP Update! Thanks @bumsonseats for sharing :)
*PS can you name that tune?
Slideshow from Melissa Kiser: How to Run an Unconference at Your Library
Just a quick update to thank everyone for signing up to October’ s LibraryCamp at the Signing Tree Conference Centre in Birmingham. All the tickets have gone now, but the EventBrite page will remain open so you can add yourself to the waiting list. If you didn’t manage to get a ticket don’t despair, there are usually some cancellations in the run up to the event.
Of course, the second option is to run your own LibraryCamp. It’s not as daunting as it sounds! Four camps have taken place since October 2011, all organised by volunteers, so there are lots of people around to give you advice and support.
One more reason to come to LibraryCamp! Tickets available now.
Beautiful cake photo from Creating in the Dark’s Flickr photostream.
OK folks so here’s the information. The first batch of tickets will be available through Eventbrite on the 23rd of July. That’s the good news. The bad? Some of you won’t get a ticket. There, I said it. When we initially planned the event way back when, we aimed for an small increase in the number of attendees. 1 year and 4 mini library camps later; libcampnw, libcampbrunel, libcampls and libcampsw, it’s evident that we’re going to be woefully over subscribed. There are 200 tickets up for grabs for Library Camp UK 12 and some places for organisers and sponsors.
The tickets are to be released in two stages to encourage as wide a participation as possible. The first lot of 50 tickets will be for two specific groups 1) First timers, (those who’ve never attended an unconference before): 2) Library staff/volunteers (without, or not studying towards qualifications).
After much debate it was decided to give the ‘shelf stackers’ (using the term loosely) an unfair advantage. Ideally we’d like cleaners, drivers and caretaker/janitors to bring and share their unique knowledge of libraries. Keeping the event fresh requires fresh attendees. There are many potentially interested staff who are rarely online and have not yet had the chance to experience an unconference.
This will leave only 150 unrestricted tickets. These tickets will be offered primarily to those of you on the mailing list. You’ll receive advanced warning, and then the tickets will be released (first come first served).
This may seem harsh to some-we feel that one of the most important aspects, if not the most important aspect, of the unconference is the variety of people there. We are aware of the difficulty in policing these decisions and are counting on the self organising ability of the event to do the job.
Of course we don’t need to remind you there is a simple solution to the problem of the lack of tickets; start running your own camp! We stressed the ease with which camps can be set up at LibCampNW and LibCampLS. With LibCampBunel and LibCampSW we’ve shown that the message is breaking out of its’ comfort zone. We’ll always be more than happy to help you start up a camp local to you, in any way we can.
On our FaceBook page we are holding a poll gauging peoples’ interest in attending on a Sunday. This followed on from a Twitter conversation about the survey we’re using to gather more details about your Library Camp experiences and expectations. Please take 5 mins to let us know what you think.
We’ve still got some surprises tucked up our sleeve, that we’re waiting to reveal, including one revenue stream that may challenge your ideas as to how we are funded.