The American Library Association (ALA) Midwinter Meeting and Conference took place in Philadelphia at the end of January. The weather was quite mild, especially compared to the last time the meeting was in Philadelphia when we had major snowfall.
As usual, I had a very full agenda. I represented the Cataloging in Publication Program at the LOC Pavilion in the exhibit hall. I also volunteered an hour at the IFLA Booth, where I had the chance to chat with Helen Mandl, Deputy Secretary General of IFLA. Our mission at the IFLA booth was to inform ALA attendees about the next IFLA WLIC in Dublin, Ireland, to promote the Library Map of the World, and to encourage libraries in the United States to submit Sustainable Development Goal Stories.
One of the most interesting sessions I attended, especially relevant to IFLA SC SAA, was a series of presentations on ethics in cataloging, particularly in the choice of subject headings assigned to a work. I attended some interesting meetings about transliteration and non-Latin scripts in bibliographic records. I also attended the LC BIBFRAME Update meeting to learn more about the LD4P2 Project. The ALCTS Subject Analysis Committee (SAC) met twice, Sunday morning and Monday afternoon, and as the LC Dewey Program Liaison to SAC, I attend those meetings as much as possible, although I was unable to attend the Sunday morning meeting due to a schedule conflict. The majority of the meetings focused on reports of the various subcommittees and reports from liaisons, such as the liaison from the Music Library Association and the American Law Library Association.
Dewey-related reports were on the Monday afternoon agenda. Violet Fox, OCLC Dewey Editor, gave the OCLC Dewey report, and I gave the report of the LC Dewey Program. Outgoing ALA appointee to the Dewey Editorial Policy Committee Deborah Rose-Lefmann gave her final report to SAC on EPC Meeting 142 held at the Library of Congress in September 2019. Daniel Joudrey, Ph.D., Professor in the School of Library and Information Science, Simmons University, and a current member of SAC, is the new ALA-appointee to EPC. Usually there is a program as part of the Monday afternoon SAC meeting, but no program was scheduled for this conference.
This was probably the last ALA Midwinter meeting that I will attend because ALA is changing the format of this conference. The Association for Library Collections and Technical Services (ALCTS), the division in ALA with cataloging standards committees including SAC, has already determined that it will not meet at ALA Midwinter 2021. I guess the next time I visit Philly will be just for fun. It’s a good thing I had a Philly cheesesteak this time!
CIP and Dewey Program Manager
Library of Congress