Conferences and events: Tweet-ups

Photo: 'Chirpy' CC by Mark J P

Photo: ‘Chirpy’ CC by Mark J P

Today’s post comes from ILN Program Coordinator Kate Byrne.

What is a tweet up? 

One of my favourite types of library events is the ‘Tweet-up’, a informal sub-event that happens alongside many conferences or more formal events. For those unfamiliar with the term, a tweet-up is simply an opportunity to meet IRL (in real life) people you have met online via the social networking tool Twitter.

Where/when do they happen? 

They tend to be semi-organised meetings (eg. meet at this place at this time) but all are welcome (whether you tweet or not) and they are a great opportunity to get to know colleagues better in an informal setting. They can happen pretty much any where but might be at a bar, a coffee shop, a restaurant or just the foyer or a conference building. There is a a very active community of librarians on Twitter in Australia, so it is very common for a tweet-up to be organised alongside an existing event, such as a conference. However they are a very affordable opportunity to network since you don’t have to  have registered to attend a conference (which is often pricey) to take part.

I’ve joined tweet-ups in Sydney, Melbourne, Canberra and Brisbane here in Australia but also in Singapore and Helsinki when I attended the IFLA congress.

I’ve noticed that whilst use of the term ‘Tweet-up’ is common here in Australia it seemed to be less well known by international colleagues at IFLA.

What can I get out of it?

Tweet-ups are networking opportunities.  They are great opportunities to meet new people as well as catch-up with colleagues you might tweet with all the time but don’t get to meet very often. I love to hear about what my colleagues are up to and what are the new developments in their libraries. I  can also hear about new projects happening in the profession with opportunities to follow up afterwards if I need to know more.

How can I attend one?

Why just attend one? Why not organise one? Just pick a time and a public place (adjacent to an existing event is helpful as people are already gathered together) and do a call-out on your social media of choice – Twitter works well as it is such an open environment. Don’t forget to use the conference/event #hashtag so that other attending the conference/event can come along.

Remember your cyber safety too! Always meet in a safe, public space – no dark alleys kids!

 

 

One comment

  1. […] There are lots of different events you can organise (or contribute to). Many library associations regularly seek volunteers to help run conferences, you can put on your own event for talks, or organising a networking night like a Tweet-up. […]

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