Quarterly Update

Carol Schuetz, editor



Steven M. Miller, Jr., Editor

Message from the Chair

Hello RSS Members,

I hope those of you who attended ALA Midwinter had safe travels and a good time at the conference. We were fortunate to have mild temperatures for the season and no snow in Philadelphia. While RSS does not hold any formal meetings at Midwinter, we do get together for our Pancake Breakfast every year. We had a small turnout this year at the Down Home Diner, but we had a good time, and I made it official by ordering pancakes.

Several of us also took part in the kick-off of RUSA’s year-long examination and reconsideration of the Definition of Reference. There was a round table session, where Past Chair Cynthia Johnson and I represented RSS at separate tables. Next there will be a virtual conversation on the topic. The date has not yet been set, but they are planning it soon. We will keep you posted. Our own Soundbites discussion forum at ALA Annual will be given over to this topic as well. RUSA would like to get a wide range of input before formulating a new definition, so please take part if you can.

In addition to the Soundbites, we will have our 26th Annual Reference Research Forum during Annual in Chicago. It will be on Monday, June 29, at 2:30pm, but we don’t have a room number yet. We will also have our all-committee meeting, for which we don’t yet have a date and time. Once again, this year we will be joining ETS for a joint social on Saturday night. We are looking into venues and securing sponsorships and we hope to make it a great party. I hope you will all be able to join us.

Committee appointment season is upon us. Our Vice-Chair, Rebecca Graff, will be working to fill many slots. If you are interested in taking part in the work of our committees and task forces, there is always room for more enthusiastic librarians. The volunteer form is live on the RUSA site (https://bit.ly/38uAlHC) and descriptions of the committees can be found at https://bit.ly/3bta9PN.

Please remember, all our meetings are public, whether virtual or in person. The RSS Board meets on the fourth Monday of every month at 1:00pm Eastern Time. The link to join in can be found on the RUSA Update calendar (https://bit.ly/37gCrtA). Following us on Twitter @RSS_RUSA or liking our Facebook page are also good ways to keep informed on what your section is doing. We are always happy to hear from our members, so please, get in touch if there is something you need or wish to share.

Janet T. O’Keefe
RSS Chair 2019-2020

Committee Reports

Virtual Reference Services Committee
The Virtual Reference Services Committee and both the Managing Emerging Technology and Hot Topics Committees of ETS hosted an online discussion of the present state of virtual reference and emerging technologies on February 25 and 26. This eForum was an opportunity for colleagues to learn from one another about their experiences with virtual reference and new technologies.

To view an archive of the two-day conversation, you can view the list-serv “vrc-eforum – Conversations in Emerging Tech & Virtual Reference eForum.” More information about the eForum is also available at https://sites.google.com/view/vrc-eforum/home.

Submitted by Paul Johnson and Melissa Del Castillo, Virtual Reference Committee Co-Chair’s, 2019-20