Planning the Six-State Virtual Government Information Conference


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Brown, Christopher C., Janet Fisher, Peggy Jobe and Jennie Gerke. Planning the Six-State Virtual Government Information Conference. Presentation given at the Fall 2012 Depository Library Conference, 16 October 2012, Arlington, VA.

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  • Conference planning for the 2010 and 2012 began at DLC meetings. Conference co-chairs from Arizona and Colorado
  • August 2011: planning to plan. October 2011: Survey sent to depository librarians in 6-state area for input.DLC 2011: Interested parties meet and endure banging throughout lunch to brainstorm ideas.  January 2012: Planning, communication, and technology committees formed.  Trusted colleagues tapped to lead these efforts. Initial ideas exchanged via e-mail and additional volunteers sought throughout the states.January 2012: Platform discussions.  The Colorado State Library agrees to provide access to its instance of Adobe Connect.  In person meetings, e-mail, and calls were used to flesh out the details.January 2012: Contact our potential keynote. Our man in Istanbul has a very heavy schedule.February-March 2012: Planning continues via conference call, Adobe Connect and e-mail.  Program suggestions received from Mark Ames, GPO, and others.  March-May 2012: Draft program plans presented to the entire group and discussed in other meetings such as Government Publications Interest Group (GoPIG).   Additional suggestions received from our networks of trusted colleagues.May 2012: Down to the nitty gritty:  documenting technical details of platform,  testing platform, contacting presenters, getting agreements allowing us to archive and reuse contact, finalizing schedules,  keeping track of who does what. May 2012: Setting up the registration site.  March-August 2012: Publicity and to all six states via liaisons.  Advertising expanded to govdoc-l when it was clear that we had space available.July-August 2012: Getting Powerpoints by the deadline and nagging those who don’t submit.  One of our presenters was in Istanbul until two days before his presentation. January-August 2012: Updating the conference website.  August 2012: Arranging practice sessions, solving technical issues, etc.  Worrying.August 2012: Posting Powerpoints, running through the slides, posting revised Powerpoints, running through the slides, posting revised Powerpoints a third time.August 2012: Days of the conference:  worrying, solving technical issues, contacting presenters who have not logged into the system.  August 10, 2012: Breathe a large sigh of relief. Consume virtual alcohol.
  • Malcolm Byrne, our man in Istanbul
  • Planning the Six-State Virtual Government Information Conference

    1. 1. 2012 Six-State Government Information ConferenceA tradition of collaborating to share and train librarians in access and use of government information sources. Presentation by: • Christopher C. Brown – University of Denver • Janet Fisher – Arizona State Library, Archives and Public Records • Peggy Jobe – University of Colorado, Boulder • Jennie Gerke – University of Colorado, Boulder
    2. 2. Website
    3. 3. Six States’ Cooperation Six-State Virtual AZ-NM joint biennial training Conferences1994 meetings; In CO, GoPIG meetings monthly • Online (2010) • Online (2012) 2000 Five-State Conference, Flagstaff, AZ Five-State Est. Savings: $30,000!Conferences 2002 Joint AZ-NM Conference •More staff can attend •Local groups joining in• Flagstaff, AZ (2000) 2004 Five-State Conference, Santa Fe, NM• Santa Fe, NM (2004) 2006 Five-State Conference, Boulder, CO• Boulder, CO (2006) 2010 1st Six State Virtual ConferenceExpensive•Travel costs 2nd Six State Virtual•Hotel costs 2012 Conference•Time away from work
    4. 4. Who Did What? Publicity subcommittee Program Planning Publicity Conference Planning Publicity Conference Co-Chair Program Planning Technology committee Website Publicity Conference Platform PublicityRegistration PublicityConference Co-ChairConference PlanningPublicity
    5. 5. Timeline• August 2011-January 2012: – Survey to depository libraries – Brainstorm get together at DLC• January 2012-May 2012 – Program design – Technology chosen• May 2012-August 2012 – Detail work (presenter agreements, technical documentation, etc.)
    6. 6. Top 10 Things to Remember1. Need someone who is dateline oriented, appoint them nagger-in- chief.2. Teams are good. No one person can do this alone.3. Start planning year in advance, but expect real work to start six months in advance.4. Choose people who you trust to complete the work.5. Organizational software (Trello, Outlook Tasks, etc.) is your friend.6. Get signed agreements from your presenters.7. Pick a platform that requires no plugins, software add-ons, etc.8. Create documentation for everyone. No matter how easy the software appears to you someone will be confused.9. Practice. Practice. Practice. Then when things go wrong you will know why.10. Have fun.
    7. 7. Programming• In My Backyard (Part 1): Locally Grown: Federal Information Sources for your Neighborhood – Jennie Gerke, Head of White Business Library; Lisa Nickum, Government Publications Library, Colorado School of Mines; Barbara Whalen, Collection Specialists, Denver Public Library• Exploring American FactFinder 2 – William Cuthbertson, Education and Outreach Librarian for Government Information, CU Boulder• In My Backyard (Part 2): Local Information Sources (State Focus) – Facilitated by Samantha Hager, Library Consultant at the Colorado State Publications Library• FDsys and Congress: New Ways to Track Legislation and Zeitgeist – Dan Stanton, Government Information Librarian - Arizona State University Libraries• Searching U.S. Patents, Foreign Patents, and Trademarks – Dave Morrison, Associate Librarian, Federal Government Information, Patent and Trademark Librarian• KEYNOTE ADDRESS: Malcolm Byrne, Deputy Director and Director of Research for the National Security Archive• International Statistics – Kate Holvoet, Head of Online Services, University of Utah• National Geologic Map Database (NGMD) – Dave Soller, Geologist, U.S. Geological Survey• Regional Updates for Six States – Janet Fisher, Arizona State Library, and Peggy Jobe, University of Colorado at Boulder, Pat Ragains, University of Nevada Reno, Jill Moriearty, University of Utah• Gov’s Greatest Hits Online – Sandy Rizzo, Librarian III/Gov Info Librarian, Mesa Public Library, Mesa, AZ
    8. 8. Go for the meat• An in-person conference has a lot of filler (coffee, introductions, housekeeping, etc.)• With a virtual conference, no need to attend everything to justify the expense. Attendees feel free to pick and choose the most relevant sessions in a virtual conference.• No filler required for a virtual conference. Plan to include a lot of content in your sessions. (Lesson learned from 2010 when we tried to emulate the in-person experience. Removing the social elements improved the 2012 conference overall.)
    9. 9. Demographics – 170 RegisteredBy State:By Library Type:
    10. 10. Attendance vs. RegistrationProgram Title Registered AttendedIn My Backyard (Pt. 1)—Local Information Sources (Federal Focus) 74 70American Factfinder 70 80In My Backyard (Part 2): Local information Sources (State Focus) 55 57FDsys and the Legislative Process 55 51Patents & Trademarks 57 48National Security Archive (Keynote) 62 63Idea Sharing: Outreach, Instruction, and Community Involvement 34 35International Statistics 54 63National Geologic Map Database (NGMD) 51 50Regional Updates for Six States 37 37Favorite Databases/Websites 81 58
    11. 11. Time Zone Challenges MDT: WY, CO, NM, UT, AZ (Navajo Nation only) PDT: NV, AZ (except Navajo Nation) = speaker or attendee outside of six-states
    12. 12. Keynote: Malcolm Byrne
    13. 13. Technology: Adobe Connect
    14. 14. Supporting Adobe Connect• For each session we had a host and a person for tech support.• The tech support person would monitor the chat window.• When a person had problems, we would initiate a private chat, or sometimes call them on the phone. Usually the issues were with local computers and not with Adobe Connect.
    15. 15. Survey Comments
    16. 16. Couldn’t Attend? You can see and hear all presentations online now!