I didn’t just do my job….I did my job right Jenica Rogers @ the final keynote of NLS6
Of all the fabulous speakers I listened to over NLS6, it is this statement by Jenica Rogers that has stayed with me in the time that has passed since the conference finished. While I am still an LIS student I also have a day job and the simplicity of this idea, of doing my job right, really struck a chord. Am I just doing my job at work and in my study? Or am I doing my work and study “right”? Upon reflection, I think there is always room for improvement. It’s a matter of being aware, of questioning the way I go about my decision making and problem solving, whether working or studying, and being honest as to whether I am doing a job I can be proud of or whether I am just going through the motions. This was definitely a consciousness raising moment for me and will continue to be so as I move forward in 2013.
There were plenty of other inspirational moments. Ellen Broad’s amazing workshop on copyright in our swiftly changing digital landscape was not just impressive because of her ability to impart gallons of relevant, thought-provoking information. It also meant I can no longer look at any image anywhere and wonder whether there is a copyright infringement happening. If that isn’t a consciousness-raising exercise then I don’t know what is. Similarly, Sue Gardner’s elegant keynote on Wikimedia and the responsibility we have as future LIS professionals to create the Wikipedia we deserve again made me reflect on how much responsibility I actually take for the circulation of information and the creation of knowledge. I returned to my day job and talked the ears off anyone who would listen about the value of Wikipedia and its underlying philosophy of social justice and access to information for all. Once again, something that hadn’t been on my radar was now front and centre. I resolved to explore the possibility of becoming a Wikipedian. Consciousness. Raised.
Apart from the speakers and their presentations there was one other aspect of NLS6 that struck me. Warmth. Now, those of you who attended will know I’m not talking about the temperature in the lecture theatres. That was icy and I was glad I took a cardigan. But the people – from the delegates, to the speakers, to the amazingly hard-working organizing committee – managed to create an atmosphere so welcoming it was almost overwhelming. Meeting and talking with people face to face, most of whom I had only interacted with online, was a privilege and a joy. And even though I’m not yet working in the LIS sector, I felt a sense of belonging that I haven’t experienced for some time. As a result I returned to my daily life resolved to work hard at my studies and to be braver in my personal and professional life. In short, at NLS6 I found the inspiration that I had been looking for to make a concerted effort to start doing things “right”.