Conference Envy and Self-funding
I often get conference envy. It is a mixture of FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) and disappointment that I just can't go to everything I would like to. As we are trying to reduce spending this year, opportunities to attend conferences are limited. I am most fortunate that my place of work does allocate monies towards professional development and it usually stretches to one conference per year. However, I was particularly disappointed to miss #NLS8! I love new librarian symposiums. The energy, enthusiasm and willingness to push boundaries is wonderful. It always feels celebratory to me. I have fond memories and great friends from all that I have attended. In fact some of my best friends in the universe are people I have met IRL (in real life) at conferences.
I've attended one conference this year, will self-fund attendance at LIANZA Conference (#open17) so I can run a workshop and I have been asked to speak at four conferences, all in Australia. Being asked to speak, means that the conference pays for your registration and accommodation. One conference, even paid me a speaker's fee and I used this money to go towards the conference I am self-funding.
To keep self-funding costs down I:
- Registered as a student (I am studying Te Reo)
- Stay in Air BNB
- Booked air fares in advance to get best price
I do know many people that self-fund. When discussing this on twitter recently, we thought that it would be great if there was a self-funding registration fee that recognised that not everyone works for somewhere that funds their attendance. This would encourage diversity of attendees too!
I will always have FOMO when I watch the twitter stream coming out of conferences but GLAM folk are awesome at blogging about what they are learning and reflecting in meaningful ways about their experience. Plus the Twitter stream is usually dynamic and exciting. It also enables you to participate in the conference back-channel - a silver lining! Yay for virtual attendance.
It would be great if more conferences live-streamed their sessions. I actually think that in the spirit of openness, that this should be normal practice. Especially when you consider many of us work for publicly funded organisations.
Postscript: This is likely to be my last #blogjune post. I did manage 2 for the month! Thanks to all those who have been blogging.