Notable events of 2007, Part II

As promised by my colleague Melissa, here’s the sequel to her notable events post. I’ve got a few more to add to her great list of things we should remember about 2007.

Top ten assumptions about the… present?
Last spring, the ACRL Research Committee released their Top Ten Assumptions About the Future, a list which the committee ironically did not intend as predictions (perhaps a word choice problem in the title of the document?). Said Mullins et al. in the above-linked article, “These assumptions identify present conditions that the committee feels will have a significant impact on how academic libraries and librarians plan for the next ten years.” Hm. Some librarians (like 1, 2) found the assumptions rather unsurprising, while others (such as 1, 2, 3) had their own ideas about what should’ve made the list. ACRLog blogger Marc was not the only one to question the purpose of the list. If nothing else, the assumptions sparked a good bit of conversation about what exactly the most important current issues are these days.

Congratulations to our new president(s)!

Possibly the oddest news in the last year was the result of the ACRL presidential election. Scott Walter and Erika Linke each received 1,645 votes, for a perfect tie. If you thought democracy was dead, think again. Your vote does matter!

Who or what are we?
As inhabitants of an evolving profession, our conversations about who and what we are (or want to be) continued last year. Should we get rid of the reference desk? (more on this here). What would life at an academic institution be like without a library? Why do libraries still exist in the age of Google? If we needed reassurance about our role in these technological times, we got it.

The most delicious year
(and the year we got totally burned out on that pun)

By the powers vested in me as… er… nobody special, I hereby pronounce 2007 the year of social networking in libraries. Okay, so it wasn’t brand new, but it’s fair to say that last year we hit some sort of critical mass. Tagging took off as many libraries began to realize that control is no longer in vogue when it comes to the catalog. LibraryThing’s catalog add-on made this even easier. Meanwhile, even resistant librarians began to explore Facebook, and the platform reinstated the possibility of having library profiles.

A good year for open access
The Open Access movement gained some momentum last year, with the advent of new publications, defensive corporate publishers struggled for some protection of their bottom-lines (desperation is a sign of fear, after all), and Congress supported the need for open access to NIH research. Milestones to remember.

So that wraps up Part 2 of the major library stories of 2007, according to me, Melissa, and ACRLog. Are there other stories you think we should have highlighted? Feel free to compliment, rebuke, or otherwise speak your mind in the comments on this post. And happy new year!

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