GLAM Blog Club – September 2017

Nik McGrath kicked off August’s GLAM Blog Club with a post celebrating the Ziggy Stardusts of the archives, and the pleasure of silence after a long day at the Melbourne Museum. Jane Cowell shared her work creating quiet spaces for users, arguing that sometimes we need to put the ‘shhh’ back into libraries. Ellen Forsyth wrote about the people who are silent in library memberships and on their shelves and provided some suggestions for fixing that. Over on Trunk Blog, we learned about an amazing project at Melbourne’s Chinese Museum to digitise their collections of Cantonese Opera gramophone recordings from the 1920s to 1940s – ending their silent years sitting on the shelf. Clare Presser wrote about the need for GLAMers to be part of public conversations – particularly those that happen online and with relevance to the GLAM professions.

From Matthew Burgess we got some sage advice about naming your digital files meaningfully. As Jason Scott famously put it, metadata is a love note to the future. Your future self will thank you for taking Matthew’s advice! Kassi Grace shared her new project, GLAMR & Gender, and asked us to speak up so we can all learn from each other and, hopefully, listen to some more diverse viewpoints. ‘Edward Shaddow’ reminded us that there is a time for silence AND a time to be noisy, and encouraged us to know which situations call for which approach. Download Woman Interrupted for your next meeting! Deciding that August was a time to be noisy, Edward posted TWICE this month, with a follow up post about his amazing new project turning sign language into keyboard input. Justine’s thoughtful post explored similar themes, ruminating on the difference between silence and quietude.

“It’s the silent ones who are privileged enough not to need help”, Andrew Finegan points out in his post about silence in public libraries, breaking down how traditional library silence can be used as a way of excluding less privileged library users. Clare gave us another fantastic and fairly personal post about how she has become a loud activist even though she is naturally a rather introverted person. She also shared the exhaustion of having her empowering and ‘safe’ online spaces begin to fill up with hate as Australians move towards a ‘voluntary postal survey’ on whether queer people should have the same rights as other Australians.

“Men like Phillip and Cook are some the most written about people in Australian history. The removal of one monument, would not cause everyone to suddenly forget about Cook, especially, when there are hundreds of books and papers focused on him”, Nathan Sentance writes in silencing history, as he addresses the recent furore over the removal of statues of dead white men. Finally, I wrote about how you can silence @ausglamblogs by adding an extra tag to your non-GLAM blog posts. And everyone else in the newCardigan community? Well, they all remained …silent.

For September, we’re looking forward to all of your posts about …Safe. Have you been thinking about safe spaces? Are you helping to keep your community safe online? Is your museum working hard to keep your artefacts safe from damage, or is your gallery trying to get people out of their comfort zone? Share your thoughts on ‘safe’ in GLAM this month for GLAM Blog Club! We missed our archivists, curators and gallerists this month so we’re looking forward to you all making up for it in September. ?

You can help make it easier to write these wrap-up posts by tagging your blog posts with glamblogclub (no spaces or hashtag), and registering your blog with AusGLAMBlogs. You can tweet about Blog Club using the hashtag #glamblogclub.