01 May, 2008

Why with all of the sexing?

This little piece has just popped into my email (for the third or fourth time courtesy of my being subscribed to multiple ALIA email lists).
Congratulations to Suzanne Parker, from the University of Queensland, for providing the ALIA Information Literacy Forum with its new name – ALIA PATHWAYS!

Now I don’t know Suzanne (unless we met at a conference in which case I apologise, terrible with names but I’m sure I’d recall your face if we met again. I blame the ADHD – it’s easier than doing something about it)
Anyway, I don’t know Suzanne but I’m sure it’s not her fault there was a competition. Nor would it be her fault she won. So I'm trying to say this post isn't about her at all but I'm using this as an example of ‘sexing up’ something that doesn’t need the sexing. Which seems to keep happening in library land, is no one is happy to be a librarian anymore?

ALIA Information Literacy Forum is a perfect name. I read it and I know what it is. It is an information literacy forum. And if I am associated with the library world then chances are I know what ALIA is too, but even if I don’t there is enough information in the name for me to make sense of the group and to make educated guesses at some of what it does.
ALIA Pathways however is a complete mystery to me, in fact if you were to ask me in six months what ALIA Pathways did. Chances are that despite my having written this post I will be unable to tell you.

Why must we try and make everything seem so much more exciting than it is. Do we need to fool people into coming along to find out about these new ‘pathways’ and if we do aren’t they going to be disappointed when they find out it is just information literacy.
Meanwhile those with an interest in information literacy are staying at home because they don’t care about pathways. They just keep checking the calendar and wondering when ALIA is going to do something about information literacy.

That said, if you are interested in Information Literacy they are looking for new committee members, so if you don't mind having to explain Pathways in every job interview you get from here on in you might like to visit their website for some details.

No comments: