It's probably too late for a 2017 but I really do think it's time to reopen the 
question of formalizing Code4Lib IF ONLY FOR THE PURPOSES OF BEING THE 
FIDUCIARY AGENT for the annual conference.

Local (and national) politics aside, it's very difficult to stand in front of 
your boss (or worse, a total stranger) and ask them to be willing to cover 
financial liability for an unaffiliated, purely voluntary organization. In 
addition, we're no longer talking about a couple thousand dollars financial 
liability, we are now getting into a HUNDRED THOUSAND DOLLARS liability.

I question the sustainability of this present system for the long term.

PS (I know, everyone says no no no, we don't want to be organized, but my 
feeling is that we need a better way to manage the funding part of the 
conference... Or choose to go local only.)

Christina Salazar
Systems Librarian
John Spoor Broome Library
California State University, Channel Islands

-----Original Message-----
From: Code for Libraries [mailto:CODE4LIB@LISTSERV.ND.EDU] On Behalf Of Brian 
Sent: Tuesday, June 07, 2016 8:27 AM
Subject: [CODE4LIB] Update Regarding C4L17 in Chattanooga

Greetings from the Chattanooga C4L17 Planning Committee:

This is a follow-up to Andrea Schurr’s May 18th email ( 
regarding the survey around potential impact on attendance of the 2017 Code4Lib 
conference, given the host of discriminatory/concerning legislation in 

Please see the summary of results below. We thank the individuals who took the 
time to respond and provide thoughtful answers as to the issues at hand, as 
well as suggest possible solutions. We met as a group last Tuesday to decide 
how to proceed. As many pointed out, they were not easy questions, and so 
predictably, there were no easy answers.

We’ve determined that given this community’s commitment to providing a safe and 
accommodating environment for all attendees, it is morally and fiscally 
irresponsible to continue the effort of hosting the annual conference in 
Chattanooga. This decision was not an easy one, and there were hours of 
discussion as to the pros and cons of proceeding, informed by your responses to 
the survey, as well as our individual opinions. 

This decision is additionally informed by the inability to secure a fiscal host 
for the conference. Even prior to legislative concerns, multiple institutions 
in the southeast took a pass, given the size of attendance and increased risk 
of liability. The two viable leads we pursued finally confirmed as a “no” last 
week. Those decisions were in part or wholly informed by the financial risk 
assumed by a host having to contend with an unpredictable timeline of withdrawn 
support via geographical boycott.

Which leaves us with the voluminous question of, “Now what?” Threading together 
survey and committee responses, we put forth the following to the Code4Lib 

1. There is a host site that has contacted the Chattanooga Planning Committee 
and informed us they are actively seeking a fiscal host and should shortly know 
the results of that endeavor. Given that no other city submitted a proposal, 
Chattanooga will pass along documentation and responsibility for next year’s 
conference if they are successful.
2. If this alternative site is unable to procure a fiscal host, then we suggest 
shifting the 2017 conference from in-person to virtual. We already have a 
potential fiscal host for this option, but we would open the implementation of 
such to the community. All of us agree that virtual cannot replace the feel and 
value of an in-person conference. However, given the mounting size of 
participation and the absence of a stable, consistent funding base, coupled 
with a socially conscious community, this year is a hard sell across many of 
the states.
3. For those interested and willing, simultaneously host in-person regional 
conferences alongside the main virtual conference. We realize, of course, that 
this leaves a vast majority of the southeast in a predicament, unless another 
region wishes to adopt us.

Know that this is not our preferred outcome, and that everyone on the planning 
committee wishes we could make this conference happen in Chattanooga. It is a 
grand little city with unexpected delights. We invite any and all questions, 
concerns, responses and conversation. Here, Slack, IRC, Twitter, Friendster, 
Myspace, and wherever else people seem to be lurking these days.

And with that, here is a summary of the survey results. Out of respect to those 
who answered under condition of anonymity, we are only sharing the raw numbers 
and not the freeform responses.

Q1: Given the current state of legislation in Tennessee, would you boycott 
Code4Lib 2017 in Chattanooga? 124 Responses:

22.58% Yes, I would boycott.
77.42% No, I would not boycott.

Q2: If Tennessee was considering a North Carolina type bathroom bill, would you 
boycott Code4Lib 2017 in Chattanooga? 124 Responses:

26.61% Yes, I would boycott.
73.38% No, I would not boycott.

Q3: If Tennessee passed a North Carolina type bathroom bill, would you boycott 
Code4Lib 2017 in Chattanooga? 123 Responses:

46.34% Yes, I would boycott.
53.66% No, I would not boycott.

Q4: If you indicated that you would consider boycotting the conference, would 
you reconsider if Code4Lib made a significant donation to an organization 
fighting against discrimination in Tennessee? 121 Responses:

34.71% Yes, I would consider attending.
19.83% No, I would still boycott.
45.45% N/A (I would not consider boycotting the conference.)

Q5: If your organization implemented a travel ban to Tennessee, would you 
consider attending Code4Lib 2017 in Chattanooga using your personal funds and 
on your personal time? 122 Responses:

26.23% Yes, I would consider using my personal time/funds to attend.
73.77% No, I would not consider using my personal time/funds to attend.

Brian Rogers
Director of Library IT & Professor
UTC Library, Dept. 6456
University of Tennessee at Chattanooga
Phone: 423-425-5279

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