As it is Xmas, let's open some presents. This Dickensian pastiche A Library Christmas Carol from the Wikiman is amusing with an optimistic message - "The only way to predict the future is to make it happen, Scrooge".
A less welcome present is the Public Library News blog - a survey of public libraries under threat in the UK compiled by Ian Anstice. It may not be what you want to find in your stocking but we have to have the big picture and stay connected.
My third present is newly elected CILIP Vice President Phil Bradley. Again, he may not be what you want to find under the tree on Christmas morning but read his blog Librarians: a thought experiment. This gives a vision of a professional body that fights for libraries and librarians but (like the Wikimans's story) warns against adopting a "victim mentality". It is all about librarians doing something positive for themselves.
And my final gift is SINTO itself. Let's make it clear, I am not suggesting that SINTO can solve your problems. The only person who can do that is you, together with your colleagues. What SINTO can do is to bring you all together and give you the skills and knowledge to deal with the challenges we will all face.
To welcome you into the New Year the SINTO gift pack contains the following events:
- Sources of health information. Key information skills to enable your library service meet the information needs of your community
- Display techniques for libraries. Selling your services with eye-catching displays
- Delivering a proactive library service. Get staff out from behind the desk to interact with users.
- Library Campaigns. An executive briefing taking a realistic look at our relationship with campaigners.
- Next Generation 12. A year long management development course for only £500.
I don't know if 2011 will be a happy year for SINTO. We will have to share the pain experienced by our membership but while we survive we will fight.
With warmest regards