Not that anyone will read it, but I have got to weigh in on this one. Family Man Librarian seems to have started it all, with this comment:
And I particularly got tired of the “fangirly” comments about — gush — actually being able to — gush — speak face-to-face with the Library Gods (a.k.a. aforementioned Mr. Dempsey, among others).
with a link to some Computers in Libraries 2006 conference reporting over at Caveat Lector. Then there was a string of comments on Mr. Family Man’s blog, all very polite (we are librarians, after all). None of this is an attack on Mr. Family Man, nor on the respondants to his blog who commented on this subject. But all of these things together did get my back up a little bit, and I feel the need to vent.
I was not at CiL, and I do not have a thing for Lorcan Dempsey personally, but yes IT IS COOL to meet people whose work you’ve been reading for years. Caveat Lector makes the excellent point that librarians shouldn’t be afraid of a little fun, and I couldn’t agree more, but I also think this has a more practical side. Whatever your opinions on the whole “we have a problem with recruiting new talent to the profession / no we don’t” debate, I think everyone can agree that when we do bring new people into the profession we want them to be the very best. We want librarianship to be their first choice, something they really want to do, not something they settle for. We want people with talent, who have new ideas and enough gusto to excite grant funding boards. We want people who are EXCITED about libraries. And gracious knows this can be kind of hard sometimes. Much as I love my job, I am not precicely pumped to go talk about MODS at my next meeting.
Take copyright. This can be the mostly deadly boring subject on earth. I had to try very hard not to sleep through these classes at library school. And yet I have also watched packed auditoriums acting like they were at a rock n’ roll show at speeches by Lawrence Lessig. Give me Lessig any day of the week.
Some people seem to be objecting to the whole “culture of celebrity” and I’m not a fan of celebrity culture either… when we’re talking about reality TV or Paris Hilton. I think librarianship has a long way to go before we reach that point. When Nancy Pearl is getting featured on Go Fug Yourself (Not that she ever would be. Nancy, I think you have timeless style.) then we can start getting upset about celebrity culture in librarianship. In the meantime I think we should be going squee over the fact that there are talented young people who are willing to devote their passion and energy to the profession. We have enough boring already, thank you.