Conferences and Events: Online Events

Photo: 'Network' by Ivan Emelianov CC-BY-NC-ND2.0

Photo: ‘Network’ by Ivan Emelianov CC-BY-NC-ND2.0

There are an increasing number of conferences and professional development events being held on the web. Whilst less traditional than face-to-face events, online events can be a lot more accessible. Many online conferences are free (or at least inexpensive) and are ‘attended’ over the internet, allowing for people to participate from all around the world. Time differences can make ‘attending’ tricky sometimes, but often online conference and events are recorded so you can still enjoy the programs asynchronously.

There are so many library webinars and other events out there just a few examples include:

Other ways to attend a conference online is to follow the conference remotely through recordings and Twitter. Some conferences offer streaming sessions that can be watched remotely live, whilst many record sessions and then make them available online – like these videos from the IFLA 2014 conference. Many conferences now also use a Twitter hashtag to create a Tweet stream so you can join in the conversation online, such as #wlic2015 for the upcoming IFLA conference.

Have you ever ‘attended’ an online conference or event? What was the experience like?

One comment

  1. Clenda Wockner · · Reply

    I have attended several webinars and I have found these to be beneficial – I do not lose time in travelling as I am reasonably remote – and if the time does not suit, I will park it and view the recording at a later date. This is particularly useful when the live webinar time is in an incompatible time zone – I am not at my sharpest at 3am!
    I recently attended a seminar at which the majority of the participants were physically present but a few were present online. Mixed feelings about this one! The cost was right because there were no travel or accommodation costs, and I appreciated being able to participate in the discussions. There was a facilitator dedicated to the online participants so our views were able to be presented at discussion times. However, it was an uncomfortable physical experience. It was a full day seminar which is a long time to spend in front of a screen – apart from the breaks of course – and virtual scones do not taste nearly as good as the real ones! It was also a bit odd to be carried around from the main venue where the full group presentations were made to the quieter side room for the discussion times. We could see where we were going via the laptop the facilitator was carrying and at times there was the potential of travel sickness. Having said that however, it is definitely a bonus to be able to attend in this way when I could not have been physically present.

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