Inspired by my friend Declan Fleming's "How to Hack Code4lib," I have been motivated to put together a guide to surviving and enjoying the Annual Meeting. It can be a seemingly scary (and potentially lonely) experience if it's your first conference, and we archivists are not always known for our extrovertedness. So, without further ado, here is my brief list of suggestions - again, some of which have been shamelessly
stolenadapted from Declan's guide.
Thanks to the great work of Lance (@newmsi), Rachel Donahue (@sheepeeh), and Angelique Richardson (@RandomArchivist) last year, the first SAA Tweetup was pulled off successfully in Washington, DC. Given that this year's SAA Annual Meeting is just a few weeks away, Hillel Arnold (@helrond) and I have elected to organize one in Chicago, as well. We're holding this year's Tweetup on Thursday, August 25, starting at 9 PM, at the Clark Street Ale House, which is about a mile from the conference hotel and easily walkable and accessible by public transportation. Feel free to join us after the alumni mixers - and please join us even if you don't use Twitter. Please RSVP at http://twtvite.com/saa11tweetup; while RSVPs are not required, they will help us and the bar plan ahead.
Some of us archivists have growing concerns regarding the long-standing labor dispute between UNITE HERE Local 1 and the management of the Hyatt Regency Chicago, the location of the 2011 Annual Meeting of the Society of American Archivists. Most recently, this labor dispute has led to a one-day strike of housekeepers, dishwashers, bellmen and other hotel workers on June 20, 2011. SAA has not given its membership any guidance to its membership about how to support UNITE HERE Local 1 and the Hyatt's hotel workers. Accordingly, my colleague Hillel Arnold and I have put together an website for archivists to find and share ideas. This website, Support Hyatt Workers at SAA2011: An Unofficial Resource, is now live, and provides ideas for actions that anyone can perform, plus lists of those specifically for individuals who have either chosen not to attend and for those that are attending. This site allows anyone to contribute and comment either generally on a given page or in response to particular ideas.