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Hello from your guest blog organiser! Tags: lisnpn blog

Hi, Iím Michelle and Iím going to be helping Penny out by doing some blog management.

A little bit about me

Iíve been a student on the MA Librarianship at Sheffield for the past two years (no Iím not lazy, just doing it part-time!) and am finishing my dissertation by the end of this month. I currently work as a careers information assistant and have previously worked as a freelance blogger, graduate trainee and dogsbody in offices around the globe. Iím currently looking for my first professional job so definitely interested in posts on job hunting, application and interview tips right now!

The blog

Weíve already had some great posts from Pennyís call for contributors, so those will be going up over the next month or so. Iíve been working on lots of ideas for the blog - ideally Iíd like to aim to have at least 2 posts per month, from a wide range of voices about all the different issues that affect new professionals. A few people have offered to contribute Ďday in the lifeí posts, which will be really interesting to see.

Iíd also like to get some more event reports on the blog, so if anyone is attending Lib Camp East on the 7th September, or Radical Library Camp on 28th September and would like to write about their experience, please do let us know.

Finally, if you have an idea for a blog post, please email us at - it doesnít have to be long, just something of interest to new professionals.

Website survey - the results. Tags: lisnpn website future

The survey closed on 4th August. It attracted 20 responses, which isn't as many as I had hoped but thanks to all that did take the time to fill it in.

As this is a network created for the users, I am going to disclosed all the information gathered from the responses:

1. Do you find the LISNPN website easy to use?

Yes - 12, No - 4, Not Sure - 4

2. Would you prefer LISNPN to have a better designed website?

Yes - 15, No - 1, Not Sure - 4

3. Are there any features you think the LISNPN site needs?

Forums - 7, Blog - 3, Resources/documents - 2, Events - 1

4. What should happen to the LISNPN website?

Raise funding to keep the website hosted by spruz indefinitely - 0

Raise funding to keep the website hosted by spruz until we can find a better provider or have a custom website made - 7

Abandon the spruz website and use Facebook and free blogs - 6

Abandon the spruz websitre and use Facebook and free blogs until a better provider is found or custom website built - 6

Other - 1 (suggested other free option which will be investigated)

5. If we decided to raise funds to keep the spruz website going (or to have funds for another hosting service), how do you think we should do it?

Contact professional bodies for sponsorship - 5

Crowd-source funding - 13

Fundraising by members - 0

Other - 2 (all of the above, contact charitable organisations)

6. Any additional comments/ideas/thoughts:

"Have you thought about using Wordpress? It's free and easy to set up, although I am not sure if you could still include a forum (which is, in my opinion, one of the main benefits of the LISNPN website)"

"I don't like the idea of LISNPN moving to Facebook - this is a 'messy' way to present information, I feel. I am a member of a few CILIP Facebook groups, and to be honest the notifications are annoying as so many are not relevant to you."

"With the support and value that many people have had from lisnpn, you'd find many members willing to chip in £5/£10 to keep it running (I would!). Agree it's better to continue to keep it as independent as possible, so no sponsorship from eg CILIP or SLA. For the future, a wordpress install with buddypress for the social bit might work well."

"Should hold more events where donations can be collected, also helping young professionals network etc.† Also should have a more obvious presence at events like library camp and CILIP new professionals day.† Good luck!"

"I think you could do a decent enough job using a combination of Wordpress & Facebook.† I'm a lapsed user myself but it was so useful earlier in my career it'd be a shame for LISNPN to disappear if it's still serving a need. "

"I'd be happy to donate £5 or so, if 25 people did the same then you'd have enough for a year's Spruz subscription. I think LISNPN is a valuable network and it would be a shame for it to disappear!"

"I think running the Network via Twitter and Facebook to publicise events, and then have the blog to do posts and present gathered resources is completely feasible, and probably easier to use and maintain than the hosted web domain (and cheaper!). That's my 2 cents anyway!"

"I reckon you could easily get people to contribute a small amount of money, say £2 each."

"Please don't force us to use facebook!† It's nearly useless for discussion, doesn't keep posts in order, can't sort by subject etc etc.† And that's before considering ever changing privacy issues."

"facebook could work for quicks posts and events and then the blog could could be used for longer reports. I don't think we need a forum as facebook can stand in for this."

"I recently went to a museum in Wales which was asking for £1 donation from everyone who went through the door. Maybe this could be a similar thing? I don't know how much it takes to make payments on line but perhaps could ask for donations of at least £1 each - am sure there are more than 120 people looking at this site! Sorting the site for this year would then provide some time to look at alternatives for the future. "

"I think most of the functions of the LISNPN website could be achieved using the free online tools currently available. For downloadable material, why not create a Google account and host on Google Drive? Forums are not hugely popular and discussions could be carried out on FB or Twitter instead. "

Overall conclusions:

Yes we want a better website - so we will work on this.

We need an interim service, I will investigate some free options (included those suggested) - although we will NOT rely on Facebook & Twitter. I think it is important for us to have a separate website as it makes the network appear more official.

Forums are important so any new site needs to have this capability also.

7 participants wanted to stick with spruz until another solution was found, whereas 6 wanted to rely upon Facebook, blogs & Twitter until another website could be built. I think in order to make the transition to a new website smooth and less confusing for all - it would be easier to stick with this spruz site until we can get another solution sorted. This allows us to maintain the current service and gives us more time to find/develop a new website. However, if an alternative is found (I am researching options at the moment) we can use that until the site is re-developed.

I will aim to set up crowd-sourced funding for this in the next two weeks.

I will consult with members throughout the stages of developing a new website - although this may take quite a while.

I recognize the importance of raising the profile of LISNPN and that is my main goal - I will try to increase our presence at events and also to think about running events of our own.

If you have any comments or ideas on anything discussed above please email:

LISNPN - Under New Management Tags: lisnpn


My name is Penelope Dunn and I am the new "manager" of LISNPN. Thanks go to the previous team for looking after everything and moving the site on so far, they have done a great job of advising and informing new professionals (including myself).

I first joined this LISNPN site in 2010 when I was in my graduate trainee post, I found it really useful to hear about what other graduate trainee roles were like and I also picked up some tips for applying for my MA course. I completed the MA in Librarianship in Sept 2012 (at Sheffield) and I am currently working at the University of York. You can find me on LinkedIn and Twitter (@lady_pgd) but do be warned my twitter feed is 50/50 libraries:rest of my interests!

I am hoping to boost LISNPNs forums and get more interaction between interested individuals and new professionals with a good follow of discussions ideas and tips.

If anyone has been to a talk or conference and they would like to share it with the rest of LISNPN - we can sort out a guest post for you. Equally, if you have any top tips for any part of being or becoming a librarian then please let us know.

Any feedback is greatly appreciated, I look forward to hearing from you all.



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