Skip to main content

Liveblogging from conferences

There have been quite a few peeps whose blogs I read who’ve been attending various conferences over the past few months. Quite a few of them seem to ‘liveblog’ the events they go to, which seems like a good idea in concept – you get the ideas and discussions from the event, as they happen, without having to go, very useful if you’re not funded to attend events, or time / location prevent you from being there.

But for me, the reality of reading these posts, just seems like looking at the PowerPoint slides of a seminar you’ve not been to – there’s probably some good points in there, but without attending the associated presentation, it can be hard to make sense of.

Very often there’s just random statements or key phrases bullet pointed, like:

“user interaction”

“funding”

“databases”

Probably good topics, but lists like these are impossible to extrapolate a thread of discussion from. Posts like these that bounce through a presentation and try and condense it into snappy points are only of use to those who actually attended…did you ever have to copy lecture notes for a class you missed, and had to make the choice of who to ask? You always went for the person who made the in-depth, full content notes of what was presented, not the ones who jotted down the main points. Main points are good as the basis to start from, but don’t give you enough information to fully understand what was going on, you still have to go back and double check things, find out more etc.

Trying to turn a 45 min / 1 hour chat into a coherent blog post just doesn’t seem to be possible while actually listening to the presentation. Most of us are not trained journalists or transcribers – we can’t write things that make sense while also listening to what’s going on. Why could blogging about what you’ve learned not just wait until it can be written into a readable format? Sure, you might be using your blog to keep notes of these points to do just that later on, but in that case, why not just keep them as a draft version, why bother to publish gobbledygook? Seriously, if you publish a ‘notes’ version, and then a ‘proper’ version, the ‘notes’ version has already irritated me enough that I’ll not waste time coming back and looking for the full version.

Or if you’re using it just for your own reference? Use a Word doc, don’t publish it to your blog!

Is there now a pressure on conference attendees to be the first to blog each event? Is it more important to get the information out there fast, regardless of how readable it is?

Comments

Jennifer said…
Personally, I loathe liveblogging. Take notes if you're going to take notes, and write up a cohesive report later if that's what you want to do. I've been skimming over a lot of posts in the last week or so...
Anonymous said…
Jennie,

I feel pretty much the same way. It seems to be a use of a technology for its own sake, rather than any meaningful contribution. A same day blog, sure, but the fragments you often get from undigested notes...not good.

Popular posts from this blog

What's in a name?

In the case of this blog, it's a name that had no particular thought or planning behind it - I had no idea whether I would actually want to keep it going, what I would blog about, or that anyone would ever read it. Well, it's almost 4 years later (17th June 2007 is blog birthday, if we're counting), and the blog's still here, so I think we can now safely assume that it's probably going to be sticking around. And the name's been getting on my nerves a bit...you have no idea the amount of people who have found this blog looking for ladies called Jennie Law or Jenny Law. Personally, I'm not actually called Jennie Law, so I'm no help to these poor searchers, although for the right fee I could maybe consider pretending to be... I also don't blog a huge amount about law: I'm not a lawyer, I just have the job of finding stuff for lawyers. Sometimes that process amuses me, sometimes it annoys me, and I blog about it. Sometimes I write about library is

Losing the professionalism

So, recently, CILIP apparently sent out an email regarding a consultation on a change of brand image, and name. I say apparently, as despite being a member, I never got this email. When I went to the website to log in and check why it wasn't sent to me, it didn't let me log in. I tried a password reset, and that email came through, so it *can* send emails to me...but the password it sent won't let me log in. I’m losing the will to keep trying. Overall, this is kind of symptomatic of how I feel about CILIP, and how useless its IT systems are.... Anyway, the consultation is on changing CILIP’s currently, clunky and meaningless name (picked as the best of a previous bad lot, as David McMenemy showed with this link to the 2000 consultation results ) to something more meaningful and relevant is open. If you want to take part, it’s here . I was a good girl, and pootled over yesterday to take part, and after filling in all the bumph, I got to view the glorious options. Oh. My.

cpd23 Week One - Blogging

So, week one of cpd23 begins, and participants are asked to set up a blog, if they don't already have one. Well, I've had this blog (in it's previous incarnation as "Jennie Law" for four years, so I think I'm good for the "setting up and getting used to blogging" part of Thing One :) I set this blog up originally as just somewhere to share the interesting things I found around the internet, with no real expectation of many others finding or reading it (and hence very little thought about a good name). At the time, there were only one or two other law librarians that I knew of blogging, so it didn't seem like it would be something long term, but for that moment, it felt good to be able to share some random thoughts with other law librarians, and to be able to learn from their blogs. I've stuck with it, despite a few periods of thinking "I've got nothing to say!" (and then finding a month or so later that I suddenly had a flood