After careful consideration I am calling an end to the Library Day in the Life Project. When I look back at my original post, which was written on whim, I said
If I post about this and get others to do it too, it will allow librarians to share amongst ourselves (our positions are changing so rapidly) and also to let the public know what we do.
So the purpose was to share with each other, across divisions of the library – reference to tech services, and across types of libraries – public to special, and perhaps to reach outside of libraryland. Over the years I have heard from LIS students and instructors who found it very useful. It has gotten so big I can no longer read all the posts ( I read one from each blogger when the project started), people from over 20 countries participate, there were over 300 signed up on the wiki for the last round, and over 1,000 people participated on Twitter. I feel comfortable saying that the original goals were completed. I also feel comfortable saying that the time has come for a reassessment of those goals. What is the true purpose Is it just to connect with other librarians and united us for a week twice a year? Then Twitter works great. But if it is to share the scope of our days with each other and the great world then maybe the focus should go back to blogging or photo sharing or video making. Is it to escape the echo chamber? Then we need better focus and some goals. I do believe this project can be revamped to achieve any one of these goals, but perhaps not all of them together in the same project. I also believe at this point in my life I am not the person to lead this change.
I have decided to close down the wiki so that it will remain as an archive of this portion of the Library Day in the Life Project.
I would be happy to link to any new spin off project if you are considering one please email me.
Some advice for potential spin-offs
- Change the dates to March and September. This way you will catch the school librarians both times (we miss them in the summer months) and miss most conferences and major holidays.
- Carefully consider the new direction of the project and how best to steer it.
- Consider your purpose and pick the best tool. The wiki was great originally but is puts a huge time burden on the organizer. If your purpose isn’t an archive of blog posts, but rather a role call of participants Google forms is a much better solution. Tumblr is great for submissions but a pain in-the-you-know-what for searching later.
Finally, I want to say thank you to everyone who participated over the years. When I wrote the original post I wondered aloud if I had the ability to start a meme, well four years, 20 countries, and thousands of participants later I think the answer is yes. Yes, thanks to the willingness of librarians and library workers to share – their time, their day, and their thoughts. I am truly honored to be part of this profession. Thank you to everyone who made Library Day in the Life possible over the years.