Category Archives: Committees and Interest Groups

Major category for Committee and Interest Group business

It begins…

When I decided to write about my time as LITA Vice-President/President-Elect, I knew I would be writing about LITA committees and making appointments to them, about LITA Forum and my experience there, and about my experience with the LITA Board in general.  I’m delighted to learn that there are other responsibilities of the Vice-President, and my hope is that by writing about them, I might help others who are interested in division leadership, be it LITA or not.

My first phone call with Mary Taylor, LITA’s Executive Director (ALA Staff) earlier this year was very pleasant.  She called to deliver the news that I had won the election, and that my term as Vice-President/President-Elect would start after the Annual conference in Anaheim.  She was clearly excited about the upcoming year, and reminded me of these Vice-Presidential duties:

  1. Attend training that would help Mary and me establish a working relationship.
  2. Attend two CNI meetings as LITA’s representative.
  3. Appoint members to LITA’s committees.
  4. Appoint LITA representatives to a few ALA committees.
  5. Plan and run the LITA Town Meeting at the Midwinter meeting in Seattle.

Some of these I already knew about, and some were new to me.  I actually have already attended the training (which I have yet to write about, boo), and I had my first conference call as LITA’s representative to the ALA Committee on Appointments, which is the official way of stating #4.

I have been LITA VP for a month and a half now, and things are really starting to ramp up.  Stay tuned here to learn what I’m doing, and I hope, to learn more about what LITA and ALA are all about.

Questions?  Please ask!

New ALCTS/LITA Metadata Standards Committee

LITA and the Association for Library Collections &Technical Services (ALCTS) , with the support of Reference and User Services Association (RUSA), divisions of the American Library Association, are pleased to announce the formation of the ALCTS/LITA Metadata Standards Committee.

The ALCTS/LITA Metadata Standards Committee will play a leadership role in the creation and development of metadata standards for bibliographic information. The Committee will review and evaluate proposed standards; recommend approval of standards in conformity with ALA policy; establish a mechanism for the continuing review of standards (including the monitoring of further development); provide commentary on the content of various implementations of standards to concerned agencies; and maintain liaison with concerned units within ALA and relevant outside agencies.

The Metadata Standards Committee will begin its work at the Midwinter Meeting of the American Library Association, January 2013. While composition of the committee is still under discussion, membership will likely include equal numbers of voting members appointed by ALCTS and LITA and a voting liaison member appointed by RUSA. The committee will actively seek input from many groups and communities of practice in its work.

Having formed this new committee to spearhead participation in developing a wide range of applicable metadata standards, the three ALA divisions have also voted to disband the ALCTS/LITA/RUSA Machine-Readable Bibliographic Information (MARBI) Committee, as of June 30, 2013. After June 2013, the MARC Advisory Committee (MAC) ( is expected to continue to advise the Library of Congress on MARC development. While there will no longer be MARBI involvement with MAC, other ALA representatives and liaisons as noted on the MAC roster will continue to advise LC about MARC. If a major issue related to MARC requires the attention of a voting ALA body, the issue may be brought to the new ALCTS/LITA Metadata Standards Committee. MARC, however, is not expected to be the prevailing focus of the new ALCTS/LITA committee.

For the past several decades, MARBI has played a critical role in improving library metadata, particularly the MARC formats. ALCTS, LITA, and RUSA thank all those who have contributed to MARBI’s many accomplishments. We look forward to working with the metadata community broadly in developing and monitoring current and emerging metadata standards.

Zoe Stewart-Marshall

LITA President 2012/13

LITA at ALA Annual 2011

By now you’re probably wondering where that fabulous BIGWIG LITA gCalendar is and why it is not already embedded on LITAblog. That’s a fair question.
In my opinion, the gCal has been surpassed by the new Conference Scheduler.

Have you taken a look at the LITA Conference Schedule in ALA Connect?
I know the display isn’t in Calendar grid format, but the new Conference Scheduler offers a complete listing of LITA programs, a way to indicate (and rank!) the various programs which interest you, and a way to export your “My Schedule” selections in iCal or other formats for importing into your regular calendar.

Check it out (and let me know if you agree! (or disagree))

Update: After some feedback, I generated an iCal of all LITA events (Search for LITA and then click the iCal button at the top right corner), and imprted it into the BIGWIG LITA Calendar:

Video: The World (and Jason Griffey) Interview Verner Vinge

The video for Saturday’s interview with noted science fiction author Verner Vinge is now available on the LITA Ustream Channel. The complete interview runs for about two hours and is available in part 1 and part 2.

The work of Vernor Vinge pushes information and technology to its incredible, but possible, conclusions. In A Fire UponThe Deep and A Deepness in the Sky, Vinge examines the concept of the technological singularity, a theoretical point where machine intelligence overtakes human intelligence, and does so in ways that play with information systems and processes. In Rainbows End, Vinge explores one potentially very real future for libraries in which we live in a world of complete information immersion. Jason Griffey interviews Vernor Vinge; futurist, author, thinker, and visionary. This program was recorded live on Saturday, January 8th 2011 at 1pm in the San Diego Convention Center. Sponsored by LITA’s Imagineering Interest Group.

The World (and Jason Griffey) interviews Vernor Vinge

On Saturday, January 8 at 1:30pm in Room 29 A-D of the San Diego Convention Center, I have the opportunity to interview an incredible author and thinker, Dr. Vernor Vinge. Dr. Vinge is most well known for being a multiple Hugo Award winning author, but he is also a Professor and technologist, famous for being a proponent of the idea of The Singularity. If you have time to pick up one of his works before ALA MidWinter 2011, I’d recommend Rainbows End…it has some of the most interesting discussions of libraries, digitization, augmented reality, and information immersion of any book in the last 50 years. He even name-checks the ALA in it. :-)

I am taking questions both now and live during the interview. We will be streaming the Interview here on LITABlog, as well as at the LITA UStream channel, taking questions via Facebook and Twitter, but if you have questions you’d like to ensure that I ask, please let me know at the form below.

Dr. Vinge will be speaking for the first 1/2 hour or so of the program, and then we’ll settle in to the questions. Come join us for what will surely be a great conversation.

LITA offering two workshops in San Diego

LITA is offering two full-day educational workshops on Friday, Jan. 7, 2011 in San Diego.

Jason Clark of Montana State University is presenting Creating Library Web Services: Mashups and APIs. Participants will learn how to bring pieces of the Web together with library data: subject guides, Flickr library displays, YouTube library orientation. Learn what an API is and what it does, the components of Web services, how to build a mashup, how to work with PHP and how to create Web services for your library. Participants should be comfortable with HTML markup and have an interest in learning about Web scripting and programming and are encouraged to bring a laptop for hands-on participation.

In addition, Amanda Hollister of will present Open Source CMS Playroom. This workshop will provide an overview of several content management systems, compare and contrast system functionality and features and demonstrate how open source CMSs can be used to enhance library websites. Open source content management systems present an opportunity for libraries to distribute content creation and maintenance and add Web 2.0 features to library websites. Bring your laptop to explore and compare basic installations of WordPress, Joomla and Drupal CMSs.

More information on these workshops and other LITA events at Midwinter can be found on the LITA web site.

Visit the ALA Midwinter Meeting registration page to register for these events. Please note you do not have to register for the ALA Midwinter Meeting in order to attend these workshops. You may register for the workshop only or add a workshop to your existing Midwinter registration by calling ALA Registration at 1 (800) 974-3084 or through the online registration form in the “Your Events” section.

LITA offering Web course on mashups and APIs

Creating Library Web Services: Mashups and APIs, presented by Karen Coombs of the OCLC Developer Network and Jason Clark of Montana State University Libraries will be held 10 a.m. – noon CST from Nov. 15-19, 2010, with live synchronous lectures each day.

This five-day course will help participants learn how to bring pieces of the Web together with library data: subject guides, Flickr library displays, YouTube library orientation. Learn what an API is and what it does, the components of Web services, how to build a mashup, how to work with PHP and how to create Web services for your library. Participants should be comfortable with HTML markup and have an interest in learning about Web scripting and programming. This hands-on course is synchronous with a daily lecture followed by a hands-on exercise. Instructors will be available for any questions during the exercises. By the end of this course, participants will be able to: understand and apply the major terms of Web services; use simple Web services like Yahoo Pipes to bring multiple sources of data together; build simple mashups with Javascript; build simple mashups with Server-side scripts (PHP). For registration and additional information, visit the LITA web site.

Contact: Melissa Prentice, LITA
mprentice (at)

LITA offering regional institute: Writing for the Web

A new regional institute: “Writing for the Web,” presented by Brenda Reeb of the University of Rochester, is now available.

This full-day workshop presents best practices for writing for the web within the context of academic and public library websites. The format is lecture style, followed by critique sessions that examine how successful sites implement best practices. Participants will revise web copy and receive feedback on their work during the workshop and will leave the workshop with quick fixes they can apply to their site immediately as well as strategies for tackling long range projects that will enhance the quality of their library website. In this workshop, participants will learn how to critique current web content for immediate improvement, write quality web copy from scratch, identify content areas that require significant revision, assess the “findability” of important features or important library content and create a style guide so that content is uniform and meets standards across the site. The intended audience should be familiar with publishing content on library websites, either as a web designer or as a writer.

Brenda Reeb is director of the Business & Government Information Library at the University of Rochester, River Campus Libraries. In addition to her work as a business subject librarian, she began practicing usability testing methods in 2001 at the University of Rochester. Her usability experience includes developing web applications for academic and public libraries, commercial vendors and nonprofit organizations. She has worked with undergraduate students, adults and children. She speaks regionally and nationally on user-centered design and usability testing on library digital projects. She received a Master of Science degree from Simmons College in 1991.

LITA Regional Institutes are one-day workshops on technology-related topics. Taught by experts and presented throughout the country, they reach beyond ALA Conference locations to bring you high quality continuing education. LITA licenses institute to organizations and would like to hear from potential hosts. Please contact LITA if you would like more information.

Looking for topics and presenters for the BIGWIG Showcase at ALA Annual

It’s time for the 4th Annual BIGWIG Showcase at the ALA Annual Conference in Washington DC, Monday, June 28, 2010 from 10:30am to Noon.  Location: TBD

The BIGWIG Showcase, (formerly  the BIGWIG Social Software Showcase), is a great event, but for it to be successful, we need your help!  In the interests of staying as “current” and relevant as possible,  we would like you to propose topics for this year’s Showcase.

You can do that here:

Once done posting a topic, you can view and vote on your favorite topics  here:

A topic can be anything related to libraries and emerging technology, from social media to discovery platforms to open-source tools to using tech tools in new or innovative ways. Use your imagination!

Also, if you are interested in presenting on this topic yourself, please put your name down and you will be contacted with details following  the voting.

Please keep topics somewhat general – but provide more details, if desired, in the “comments” portion.

So suggest a topic and or vote on a topic for the showcase by Friday, May 14, 2010.