Chairing WAC

I haven’t got to mention that I’ll be chairing the ALA Web Advisory Committee for this coming year. I thank our president Jim Rettig for the appointment. I just sent this message to the group and wanted to share it here as well:

Greetings Web Advisory Committee!

I am very happy to serve as chair for this coming year. I’m even more excited about the launch of the new ALA website, which will be on September 22nd. The preview is available here:

http://staging.ala.org/home.cfm

Here’s some of what’s ahead:

For the first two weeks, we’ll be asking the members of WAC to proactively spend some time actively testing/surfing the site and reporting issues using the site’s feedback form. We’re hoping you can
help us identify problems before users encounter them.

There will be broken links. This will be an ongoing task to correct them, but the new CMS does identify them. The site will keep improving over time as more and more of the links are found and corrected.

You may notice that “ala” is part of the directory structures/URLS. This is a product of the CMS. It cannot be removed without disorganizing the thousands – thousands! – of pages/files, but ALA staff plan to explore a resolution in the coming months.

There will surely be some online discussion/blog posting/ranting/suggestions – I am going to do all I can to make sure the criticism is constructive. I will be posting about this on my blog and urging folks to be understanding and helpful.

In October, we’ll also be asking you to help alpha test ALA Connect, the new version of ALA’s online, collaborative space. More information about this will be forthcoming, and we appreciate your willingness to help move ALA’s web services forward during such a momentous time.

ALA will also begin a comprehensive accessibility review once the website goes live and we have most of the content in place.

Finally, I must thank EVERYONE involved with web development on the staff of ALA. I know many hours, much thought and loads of time have gone into making this new incarnation of our online presence so much better than what came before.

I look forward to working with all of you.

Michael

Michael Stephens – Assistant Professor
Graduate School of Library and Information Science
Dominican University

I am very excited about the possibilities for ALA Connect as a social platform for collaboration. I’ll be posting more here as we go along.

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