Tuesday, 3 March 2009

Who said librarians are boring?

It's all kicking off at CILIP (the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals). Their Chief Exec keeps a blog - rather pompously entitled "From the Chief Executive's Desk" - and he's shared with the world his view on Twitter. More importantly he's given his considered opinion on whether CILIP (remember the "Information Professionals" bit) should have a Twitter presence.

The simple answer, of course, is no. In terms of "official" activity, cyber life is just like real like - if it happens in a CILIP-sanctioned space, it's
official; if it happens down the pub or in someone else's space, it isn't.
Bob McKee - "From the Chief Executive's Desk", 18/02/09

How that is "a simple answer" is beyond me but I'm more exercised by this idea of hypothecating spaces. I'm writing this on blogspot while working for the University of the Arts, London but I'm also thinking about some work I'm doing for the Open University. This blogging space is neutral (not managed by any of the organizations I work for) so how credible is it?

Phil Bradley - a pukka member of CILIP (notice that the Cheif Exec's blog only accepts comments from paid up members of CILIP!) has written a wonderful response to the original posting.

This is proper web 2.0 stuff - and I think that this is the point that Bob has missed. "The space" is no longer contested - it's out there wherever people chose to write or speak. The idea that anyone will get that genii back in the bottle is laughable and those who aren't engaging with these technologies are the ones who are being left behind. Treat yourself to reading all the comments - the last one, it's from Bob, talks of printing off all the comments so that he can read them on the train and consider his response........

Thanks to Clari for tweeting this in the first place - the futility of Bob's position will be evidenced by the spike in reads that post will have simply because it's been passed around on Twitter.

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