NYC Collective March 2007 Meeting Minutes

Sunday, March 18, 2007
ABC No Rio, Print Shop

Attendance: Celeste, Dena, Emily, Jenna, John, Jonny, Melissa, Stephen

1. NYC Anarchist Book Fair. Jenna gave an update on the book fair, which will be held on Saturday, April 14, at Judson Memorial Church. Rad Ref will have a half-table (sharing with Books Through Bars). Dena will coordinate a schedule of tablers throughout the day (11-7). Jenna will ask James and ShinJoung if they can do reference home support for all or part of the day.

What will we have at the table?

2. U.S. Social Forum. Celeste and Dena are thinking strongly of going, plus Melissa if she can get off work. Still no consensus on what to do if Rad Reffers do go. (After the meeting, Celeste and Melissa talked to Jamie on the USSF tech team, who said that they really need people who can help organize the content on the website. He will be in touch with Celeste.)

3. Rad Ref website update. Jenna reported that the "smart quotes" and attachments are back! Many thanks to Eric. Unfortunately, John (and others) are still having problems accessing and viewing various parts of the site. On a related tech-support-type note, Jenna suggested people be on the lookout for an additional someone(s) who knows Drupal and can help us out with website stuff, because Eric is swamped.

We talked about the new question process. Celeste asked how best to answer questions -- are there recommended sources? A particular procedure to follow? All said there's no one way to do it -- use multiple reputable sources; cite everything; even if the answer is a brief undisputed fact, show how you got to that fact; etc.

Jenna and Dena expressed some dissatisfaction with the site design as it is -- anyone is welcome to make suggestions for redesign.

4. MP3 Rad Ref radio show. Stephen proposed putting together a weekly/monthly/quarterly/annual 30-minute (or less, to start) radio show. It would concern issues of importance to library and information workers -- access to information, creation of information, copyright, etc. Everyone was enthusiastic about the idea. Segments of such a radio show could be offered to a community radio station like NYC's WBAI (a Pacifica station) to air, and it could be indexed on places like the A-Infos Radio Project. John mentioned LiSRadio as a similar project. Celeste mentioned Odeo (and, later,,, and InterWorld Radio).

(It was also suggested that progressive radio online would be a good topic for the Reference Shelf, if anyone wants to put that together.)

Technical requirements -- not too complicated. ProTools or Audacity (an open source alternative) would be the main necessity for recording.

5. Next salon topic. We explained the concept of the "salon"/discussion. Some suggested topics for future salons (with possible facilitators) were:

  • copyright (with Laura Quilter, e.g.)
  • listen to non-librarian activists talk about what they would like Rad Ref to do to support their work
  • hold a frank discussion with potential library school students
  • the current state of cataloging (with K.R. Roberto, Rick Block, e.g.)

We agreed that the next meeting would be Sunday, April 29, at 5pm. Melissa will see if we can meet at the NYC AIDS Housing Network, as a Brooklyn alternative.

6. Radical Reference hats. Dena wants a hat and is willing to be the distribution point for a bunch more hats if that's what it takes. Jenna will talk to James and ShinJoung about ordering another batch.