Council of North American Map Societies



Minutes of Meeting October 4, 2008




Attendance:  John Docktor (CONAMS), Wes Brown (Rocky Mtn. MS), Tom Sander (SHD), Art Hotzheimer (Chicago MS), David Jones (Edmonton MS), Ky Kylander (Boston MS), John Hébert (Phillips Soc.), Bill Warren (California MS), Yolanda Theunissen (Osher Library Associates), Diane Powell (Texas MS), Howard Lange (Washington MS), Paul Mathias (Rocky Mountain MS), Greg McIntosh (California MS).


After introductions, the minutes of November 9, 2007 were approved.


The next item of business was to consider the proposal from Paul Mathias that had been circulated earlier. In summary, the proposal was to establish a website for CONAMS in order to better conduct our business, which might be funded by an assessment of each map society, on a per member basis, or the establishment of a member map exchange service with resultant fee income. This proposal induced lively discussion about the needs of CONAMS and a consensus was reached that its mission was rather limited and a website was not necessary. A monetary assessment of constituent societies was not necessary at this time either. No commitment was reached to engage in a member map exchange and it was noted that a dealer had recently proposed the establishment of a similar concept privately. Paul Mathias was authorized to obtain more information from the dealer and bring this information back to the Council.


There was considerable discussion of the effort of the Texas MS to send out email announcements of the October 2008 meeting. Some societies transmitted this information to their members while others did not. There is a consensus of opinion that it would benefit each map society if such transmissions for the entire map community could be sent out. John Docktor explained that his existing CONAMS listserve permits the transmission of such messages to a representative of each society.


It was apparent that certain societies had assigned a representative to receive such information and distribute it while others have not; this seems to be the problem. The societies present were urged to assign a representative two duties. First is to upload information about their meetings/exhibitions that they wish to share to the CONAMS listserve. The initial sender of the email to the CONAMS listserve should indicate in the subject field whether the message is for Representatives-only or for broad distribution. The second duty is to insure that announcements they receive from other societies on the CONAMS listserve are transmitted to their members. It was left up to each society to determine how best to do this. Some might send out the message electronically while others in print. Some might send the message out when received while others might batch the notices and send them with their own regular society announcements.


The group discussed to what extent they had made use of the good ideas generated by CONAMS. It was felt that each society’s representative should be responsible for passing the suggestions and news back to the boards of their respective societies.


The group discussed the benefits and challenges of electronic communications with members. The problem of obtaining email addresses from members may be alleviated if the members knew they would receive timely and useful information via electronic mail. Numerous representatives believed that the frequency of electronic transmissions should be controlled in order to prevent oversaturation leading to blockage of all messages from the society.


There was brief discussion of sharing best practices regarding technology for archives and databases for map collections. Bill Warren recommended Filemaker Pro. Tony Campbell’s website will list links to any archives that are posted on the web.


John Docktor was affirmed as President and Wes Brown as Secretary for the next year.


The next meeting will occur during the Oct. 11 – 13, 2009 SHD program in Raleigh NC.