I read some of the feedback from OzIA on the weekend. And one comment stuck out and worried me a bit. The comment was along the lines that my talk seemed silly (which I can deal with) and cliquey (which worries me).
Now I know that a couple of times I mentioned folks in the audience by name. I know that I know a decent proportion of the crowd. And there definitely is a group of IA folks in both Canberra and Sydney who see each other regularly, hang out together, eat together and even do non-IA stuff together.
But it worries me that it may be seen as a clique. Something that has an in-crowd and an out-crowd. I worry that it might look like there is an in-crowd that doesn’t want to involve other people, because that’s just not the case.
Those of us who do hang out together do so partly because we have gotten involved in something. We’ve been to conferences together, attended IA meet-ups together and volunteered together. We’ve discussed the future of IA and what it all means over drinks. That crowd has built up over time and changes over time. There is no membership and no secret handshake. It is just a bunch of folks with a shared interest.
So, please. If it looks to you like there is an IA clique that you are not involved in, just get involved. Here’s how:
- Go to one of the regular IA events (Canberra IA group or Sydney IA peers)
- Start your own IA group
- Join the IAI and get involved in a volunteer project
- Join the IA Australia mailing list and share a story or ask for help
- Contact me for other ideas about ways you might contribute
We aren’t an exclusive clique and we really do love getting to know other people who do IA.