We’re about three weeks away from ALA Annual in Chicago. Aside from the book cart drill teams and the vain hope that someday swag bags won’t be neon orange, for many of us that means getting ready for some fantastic YALSA programming.

By now, those of you attending have probably started using the event planner or penciling sessions into your calendar, and if you’re like me, you’re starting to have a tough time choosing between all the great events YALSA and other divisions have to offer. Or you’re realizing that the morning you fly home is also the morning of a great panel. Or you can’t make it to Chicago, but you’re really hoping the YALSA blog can help keep you up to speed.

Have no fear–liveblogging is here!

In Denver we liveblogged the Best Books for Young Adults Teen Session and the announcements of the Youth Media Awards. Now we want to make our live sessions even better.

How do we do it? With your help.

Did you like the fantastic video taken by Kelly Tyler at Midwinter? Volunteer to be a liveblogger! Video integration is only possible with the help of other bloggers, and the more we have sitting in on a session, the richer our session can be.

Do you follow YALSA or ALA on Twitter? Join the action yourself! CoverItLive includes Twitter integration, so you never have to leave the comfort of your own phone. Any username with public updates can be added to the list of session participants, and anything you tweet will show up in the chat window.

If you’re in a session, liveblogging provides a great back channel for audience participation. Missed a great line from the speaker? Someone else in the room could be tweeting it right now. Wish you could see the video that just got mentioned in passing? Oh, look–one of the editors just plugged it into the liveblog.

If you can’t make it to a session, liveblogging gives you the chance to participate virtually. Ask a question that someone in the room can pass along. Answer quick polls for immediate feedback on the session. Watch media while the presentation is still unfolding.

We’ll be polling the masses soon to find out which sessions you’d like to see liveblogged, but if you already know one you can’t bear to miss, feel free to drop the title in comments! And if you’d like to participate yourself–as a blogger, videographer, or photographer–now is a great time to throw your hat in the ring.

About mk Eagle

I'm the librarian at Holliston High School, a bit west of Boston. In my spare time I advise my school's yearbook and Gay Straight Alliance, write about food, and root for the Red Sox.

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