I’m Not Ignoring You

Figure it’s about time for an update.

Things are good. Settling into my job at Zappos after the month long phone training — which I did survive, thankyouverymuch. My new mantra about taxonomies: If everyone in the company dislikes something about the taxonomy, it’s most likely effective and well-constructed. It doesn’t mean that there isn’t room for improvements or increased efficiencies, but that it’s a working machine. I’m still learning the ins, outs, and history of how this beast was created.

Yeah, the learning curve is steep. Have to figure out people’s names, their jobs, the command structure… the works! I’m looking at it this way: I can either do this now or deal with the consequences of inaction three months down the line. But isn’t that the same in every new job?

[ soapbox ]
Another thing that’s been on my mind: A few weeks ago I read something (I wish I cold remember where) that had the gist of the message that ML(I)S students that work for a business as information architects, user experience researchers, or knowledge managers instead of an actual library are sell-outs. Frankly, I feel that view is very short-sighted and only serves to segment the information profession rather than bring these different types of skills together. I use the same skills as a librarian cataloger when forming taxonomies. I need to consider similar users when constructing web site pages so that they can best find the information that serves their needs. We are all user-centric. Without patrons, a library closes. Without customers, a business closes. Businesses need librarian skills just as much as a public or school librarian requires highly skilled librarians. We need to evolve as a profession to stay viable and gain more exposure for the value of our skills.

[ /soapbox ]

I’ve also been tweeting less because — well, I just simply don’t have the time! Between training for another half marathon in 3 weeks, learning the job, and saying goodbye to friends that are moving on (sniff, sniff!), it’s been a madhouse. So, maybe I am ignoring you, but unintentionally.

Photo: Journey To The End of the Night 2010 by John Morrison and used under a Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic license.

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Sara Written by:

I'm an Information Architect and Taxonomist in the greater Philadelphia, PA area. Mad about metadata. Incessant organizer. Knowledge monger. Information seeker. Wisdom chaser. Curiosity has yet to kill this cat!

3 Comments

  1. 2011/04/11

    A few weeks ago I read something (I wish I cold remember where) that had the gist of the message that ML(I)S students that work for a business as information architects, user experience researchers, or knowledge managers instead of an actual library are sell-outs.

    That's just holier-than-thou silly, right up there with "catalogers don't serve the users" and "if you were a *true* fan…" As if every LIS person does (or should do) the same job in the same place. (And with job shortages as they are: as if they could even.) Some people may not want to work for a corporation and take on all the ensuing issues with it, but some may not want to work in a public or academic or school library and take on all the ensuing issues with them either. That preference doesn't make any of the other choices any less valuable.

    BTW, I love your comment that a sign of a good taxonomy is that everyone has issue with it.

  2. M1970
    2011/04/19

    i am just glad you are soooo busy 😉 ~M

  3. 2011/04/20

    I call myself a sellout librarian, mostly jokingly, but also because other librarians call me that. I've never had the title of librarian and when I tell people I am one they get confused or say something like, "oh but not practicing?" which is hilarious. I personally think it has more to do with the paycheck than the difference of skills.

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