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Meeting Minutes: October 21, 2004

InfoEyes Advisory Committee Meeting Minutes

Meeting time: Thursday, October 21, 1:00pm central / 2:00pm eastern (11:00am pacific / 12:00pm mountain)

Meeting place: Go to
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Welcome everyone. "Welcome back, Cleveland."

Attending: Diana Sussman, Illinois; Linda Rossman, Massachusetts; Lori Thornton, Washington; Mary Mohr, LOC; Sharon Ruda, Illinois; Crystal Lentz, Washington; Catherine Durivage, Minnesota; Tom Peters, TAP Information; John Mugford, New Mexico

Financial and/or in-kind contributions. Payment arrangements and amount.

Still unsure of contribution cost for each library. About $1,520 for profile. Will we be subtracting Barry Levine's $500 contribution and/or Perkins' contribution of $250 from that? Will that figure then be divided by 9 libraries? Invoices needed by participating libraries.

Review of procedures. Who will input the chat transcripts from questions into the Question Point management system? Will we email our transcripts to the list, or to this specific person?

Procedure: After answering a reference question in the iVocalize room, email listserv ( Use the subject line: "transcript." Body of email should include (cut and paste of) iVocalize text chat and a summary of what was said if the session included a lot of audio. Be sure to set iVocalize to time stamp chat entries and to show URLs in text chat.

John Mugford will input iVocalize questions into the Question Point management system as part of his in-kind contribution of keeping statistics. He will report statistics monthly, and will begin compiling statistics in October. Tom Peters will compile September statistics and share his statistical spreadsheet and written instructions with John.

Question: Will we be enabling the capability of transferring questions to a participating library within Question Point, and is this capability possible within our single QP profile? Mary Mohr will research this question and will explain to us how to transfer questions.

Does anyone wish to make other in-kind contributions? Illinois' arrangement.

Because along with financial contributions Illinois is still making major in-kind contributions with managing the project the three participating libraries are sharing a single two-hour desk shift each week. New Mexico is making the in-kind contribution of keeping statistics in lieu of any financial contribution. Perkins is making a financial contribution of $250. Mary Mohr (LOC) is making in-kind contributions such as the research described above and is working on accessibility issues. Minnesota, LOC, IL, and perhaps others will be serving on a committee to amend the web site.

Publicity update

Lori Bell has revised the publicity to everyone's suggestions and will send it out later. It was expressed that there should be an attempt to standardize press releases for patron newsletters and for print media targeted toward organizations that serve the print-impaired population. The press releases Lori is working on may serve this purpose, or may need further tweaking for certain audiences.

Illinois State Library TBBS had their communications director write a press release that everyone can use by just filling in blanks as they wish (people giving quotes etc.). Perhaps that could be sent out to the list again.

Web and email ideas:

Incorporate into regular outreach:

Conferences & Presentations:

Several agreed that we need to enlist more regional libraries, partly to defray costs. Again, voices from outside Illinois need to be heard. Talk up InfoEyes on the LBPH listserv. This project helps us all to meet the potential new NLS standards for providing accessible reference. That fact should encourage further participation.

Grant seeking update

Tom and Lori are working on a Verizon grant to help fund a part-time coordinator position, the money for the profile and online training. They are hoping to get it done and turned in by the end of November. Verizon's calendar year 2004 money is spent, so the grant will be for 2005 funding.

Sharon Ruda will search her library's Foundation Directly Online database once her library renews its access.


It was suggested that links to "email a reference question" and "interact with a librarian" along with service hours need to show up at the top of the screen without any scrolling needed. Details about the service can be lower on the page. Service access links should be big and bold. Hours should be visible without scrolling because if people try the service during off hours they'll have the InfoEyes site in the iVocalize room and will hopefully refer to the service hours and use the site to send us an email.

Lori Thornton will serve on web site committee. Mary Mohr could also help with looking at how other virtual reference sites are designed and offering ideas, although she doesn't tout any web design skills.

Form for email questions:

It was suggested that we revisit the web form. Perhaps we should ask patrons for more information because added information helps with statistic, but also helps with allowing us to get clarification from a patron when needed. Suggestions: add city and phone number, and take a look at what the LOC form asks for, perhaps incorporating some, but not necessarily all of their fields.

Closing questions in Question Point:


Be sure to close questions in QP if they are adequately answered. If you're still working on them, need help, or are following up on a question, leave it open. If you are browsing closed questions and want to send the patron a follow-up response because you have something concrete to share, do so as long as not much time has passed.

Next meeting:

Thursday, November 18. 1:00 central.

To Do:

  1. Invoice participating libraries for shared cost of QP profile. (Mid-Illinois)
  2. Email listserv according to guidelines in agenda item #3 after answering a question in the iVocalize room. (everyone - ongoing)
  3. Tom Peters and John Mugford will communicate about statistics and inputting questions to the QP management system. (Tom and John)
  4. John Mugford will collect and report statistics monthly and input iVocalize questions into QP. (John - ongoing)
  5. Implement some of the publicity ideas discussed in agenda item #5. (everyone - ongoing)
  6. Look into whether OCLC will add an InfoEyes link to QP web site. (who?? Unassigned task)
  7. Continue searching for grant-seeking opportunities. (everyone - ongoing)
  8. Serve on web-site committee. (Lori T., Mary Mohr, Lori Bell and others)
  9. Revisit information asked for on QP email form. (Who?? Unassigned task).
  10. Close QP email questions when they've been answered completely. (everyone - ongoing).
  11. Send fill-in-the-blank press release to the listserv (Sharon Ruda).