2015 Call for Speakers Now Open!

YellThe Call for Speakers for Big Talk From Small Libraries 2015 is now open! This free one-day online conference is aimed at librarians from small libraries; the smaller the better. Small libraries of all types – public, academic, school, museum, special, etc. – are encouraged to submit a proposal.

Do you offer a service or program at your small library that other librarians might like to hear about? Have you implemented a new (or old) technology, hosted an event, partnered with others in your community, or just done something really cool? The Big Talk From Small Libraries online conference gives you the opportunity to share what you’ve done, while learning what your colleagues in other small libraries are doing. Here are some possible topics to get you thinking:

  • Unique Libraries
  • Special Collections
  • New buildings
  • Fundraising
  • Improved Workflows
  • Staff Development
  • Advocacy Efforts
  • Community Partnerships
  • That great thing you’re doing at your library!

For Big Talk From Small Libraries 2015, we’re looking for seven 50-minute presentations and five 10-minute “lightning round” presentations.

Big Talk From Small Libraries 2015 will be held on Friday, February 27, 2015 between 8:45 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. (CT) via the GoToWebinar online meeting service. Speakers will be able to present their programs from their own desktops. The schedule will accommodate speakers’ time-zones.

If you are interested in presenting, please submit your proposal by Friday, January 9, 2015. Speakers from libraries serving fewer than 10,000 people will be preferred, but presentations from libraries with larger service populations will be considered.

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Save the date!

CalendarBig Talk From Small Libraries 2015 will be held online from 8:45am – 5:00pm CST on Friday, February 27, 2015.

Keep an eye on this space for the call for presentations coming soon.

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Evaluation results

To DoThank you to everyone who took the time to fill out our evaluation survey for Big Talk From Small Libraries 2014!

The 140 responses indicate that the Conference successfully reached the small libraries it was targeting.  Library sizes ran the gamut, but 82.5% of respondents reported that their libraries served fewer than 10,000 people.  Overwhelmingly, respondents were from public libraries-almost 85% of them.  A little more than half were library directors.

Most respondents, 88%, viewed the conference alone.  The universally popular theme of saving money was the subject of the most often viewed session – 90% of respondents watched the 10-minute Lightning Round presentation, from Eric Palo, “How to Stretch a Small Budget – Consider Buying Used Books.”   The least often viewed session during the live broadcast is the session most often at the top of respondents’ “plan to view the archive” list, which would seem to indicate that the scheduling might have more to do with how many live viewers the session drew than the subject.

A majority of respondents spent the whole day at the Conference.

As far as the most useful session, it seems the Conference had something for everyone, because choices were spread among all of the sessions.  “Non-literary Collections, Why?” was most often selected, with 21% of the responses.  “Non-literary Collections” was also chosen most interesting session by 29% of the respondents, so we’ll have to see if many libraries start including camping equipment, cake pans, and toys in their collections.

Almost 66% of respondents had not viewed a previous Big Talk Conference, so it looks as if word is spreading and we’re gaining viewers.  If you thought the Conference was useful, won’t you tell some of your colleagues about it next year?  Email and Facebook seemed to be the way most respondents heard about the Conference.

The evaluations included some great ideas for sessions next year.  We hope that you’ve been inspired to submit a proposal for a presentation next year.  Look for the call for proposals around Thanksgiving.

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Second call for evaluations

Thanks to all of you who have already completed the Evaluation Form for Big Talk From Small Libraries 2014! We’ve received lots of good comments and ideas to help us as we plan our future conferences.

If you haven’t had time to submit the evaluation yet, it will remain open until this Friday, March 14. So, please take a few minutes to fill it out at https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/WGNV7RZ

Michael, Christa & Laura

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Map of 2014 pre-registrations

Last night we were asked to post the map that we were showing as part of the conference introduction and break slides. Here it is:

BTSL 2014 Registration Map

This map represents people who pre-registered. We were able to create this map since as part of pre-registration we asked for city and zip-/postal-code. With that data we were able to create the map.

We did look this morning to see if we could create a similar map based on actual logins, but as part of the login process we did not ask for the same data so we don’t have the data we need to create such a map. We will consider this for next year.

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2014 Attendee Statistics

We’ve crunched the numbers that we have from GoToWebinar and we can report the following numbers for those interested:

  • 366 unique logins totaling approximately 415 attendees.
  • 398 attendees from the US and 17 from Canada.
  • Attendees represented 41 US states and five Canadian provinces.
  • The most number of participants came from Nebraska.
  • The largest viewing party was 15 from the Central Kansas Library System.

And here was the results of the FTE poll we did during the day:

FTE Poll


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All recordings now available

800px-RCA_Indian_Head_test_patternI love it when a plan comes together.

Yesterday I set out to start editing the eight-hour recording into the individual settings, transcode the video files, upload them to YouTube, and embed them on their respective pages on this site. Typically, based on all sorts of things like bandwidth, computing power, and YouTube’s processing speed, I didn’t expect to get very far. However, almost nothing went wrong (I did have to restart the editing software once,) and the bandwidth was with me all day long.

As a result, all of the recording are now available for your viewing pleasure. Just head on over to the Presentations page and click on the session of your choice. We’re still waiting on many of the PowerPoint files from the presenters but we’ll be sure to post those as soon as they arrive.

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2014 Conference Wrap-up

First let us take this opportunity to thank all of the presenters for their amazing sessions. Without all of their hard work, the event would not have been possible.

Next, we’d like to thank everyone who attended. The questions and comments that came in during the event were both insightful and thought-provoking. Early numbers report that we had 366 logins, some of which were viewing parties, so the final number will be higher. As we assemble all of the statistics we’ll report them here.

So, what’s next?


Please take a few minutes to fill out our Survey Monkey evaluation. We’ll leave it open for two weeks so you can take your time thinking about the event. Once we close the survey we’ll be reading all of your comments and passing them along to the individual speakers.

Recordings and Presentations

At the moment we have a single eight-hour-long video file. As with previous years we’ll be editing this down into the individual presentation recordings, posting them to YouTube and embedding them here on the site under Presentations. We’re also collecting the PowerPoint files from each of our speakers and will also be posting them as we receive them. So, this process, especially the video editing, will take some time. Everything will be posted as it becomes available but experience tells us that this process will take a week or two.

Continuing Education Credit

Nebraska librarians have earned 1 C.E. credit for each 50-minute session attended.  Due to the nature of this event, we cannot track which sessions you attended, so please fill out the usual form and let us know, so we can record your C.E. credits correctly. If you attended 10-minute lightning round sessions, please list them as well.

If you are a non-Nebraska librarian, any CE credit you wish to earn for this event will need to be arranged with your CE-granting agency since we are not authorized to give you CE. We will not be providing certificates for attending the conference. However, you can use any of the emails that you have received as proof of your registration for this event. Additionally, a “Thank you for attending” e-mail was automatically sent from the GoToWebinar system to all attendees who logged in to the live session. That message serves as your proof of attendance.

Thanks once again, and please keep an eye on the site for more news and updates. If you have any questions please check the FAQ, and if you still don’t have an answer please feel free to leave a comment.

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Login Instructions for Big Talk From Small Libraries 2014

Big Talk From Small Libraries will be broadcast online using the GoToWebinar online meeting service. Please see the NLC Online Sessions webpage for detailed information about GoToWebinar, including system requirements and firewall configuration. GoToWebinar works on PCs, Macs, iPads, and Android devices.

TO ATTEND THE CONFERENCE – Pre-Registration is no longer required!

As of 8:30am on February 28, you will be able to join the conference at any time by following these instructions. There is one login for the entire day of presentations – you can use these instructions to log in and out of the conference as you like throughout the day, based on your interest and availability.

1.  On your computer workstation, go to https://www2.gotomeeting.com/register/466051234 and register in the GoToWebinar system.

2. Use the link on the confirmation webpage to connect to the session.

3.  You will be connected to audio using your computer’s speakers (VoIP).

If the link above does not work, go to http://www.joinwebinar.com  Type or paste in the Webinar ID: 466051234 and enter your e-mail address. Click ‘Yes’ or ‘Always’ (or ‘Trust’ on a Mac) if prompted to accept the download.

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Last day to pre-register

exclamation-mark-153646_640Registration for the conference will be closing at midnight tonight so there’s still time to pre-register. We currently stand at 436 registered participants and we’d love to break 450 so now’s your chance. Even if you’re not sure if you’ll be able to make it, if there’s a chance, please register so you’ll be sure to receive the login information via e-mail.


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