|American Libraries Online
Historians await access to the Library of Congress Twitter Archive
The microblogging service Twitter has gifted its entire archive of tweets, totalling billions of 140-character posts dating back to March 2006, to the Library of Congress. “The Twitter digital archive has extraordinary potential for research into our contemporary way of life,” said Librarian of Congress James H. Billington. Highlights of the collection include the first-ever tweet from Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey; President Obama’s tweet after winning the 2008 presidential election; two tweets by photojournalist James Buck, who was arrested in Egypt in 2008 and whose use of Twitter set off events that contributed to his being freed the next day; and Green Revolution tweets related to protests of the 2009 Iranian presidential elections....
American Libraries news , May 17
Facing cuts, NYPL turns to improv group for viral video
Fearing severe budget cuts more than ghosts, New York Public Library teamed up with public pranksters Improv Everywhere to host one of IE’s missions at the library—and produce a viral video (3:36) supporting NYPL’s “Don’t Close the Book on Libraries” advocacy campaign in the process. “We are facing a $37-million budget cut from the city of New York,” NYPL spokeswoman Angela Montefinise told American Libraries. As a result, she said, the library is trying to reach out to new audiences, and Improv Everywhere offers audience in abundance....
American Libraries news, May 18
Executive Director’s message: Planning and budgeting
Keith Michael Fiels writes: “At the ALA Executive Board’s spring meeting, April 23–25 at ALA headquarters in Chicago, the board spent a significant amount of time discussing the draft ALA 2015 Strategic Plan and the latest revisions made to the plan based on comments provided by over 750 ALA members. The ALA Council agenda includes discussion and, hopefully, adoption of the plan at Annual Conference in Washington, D.C. Work on the plan has included an environmental analysis, a member survey, joint ALA/division and round table planning retreats, chapter and affiliate forums throughout the country, Council and membership planning sessions at the Midwinter Meeting in January, a review by committees and affiliates, and member comments.”...
American Libraries column, June/July
In Practice: A library in your pocket
Meredith Farkas writes: “In Vermont, it was easy to ignore the mobile computing craze until 2009. Before then, AT&T didn’t have a presence here, so we couldn’t purchase iPhones in the state. That all changed last year, and now, barely a day goes by that I don’t see someone checking email, texting, or browsing the web on their iPhone. Mobile devices are becoming difficult for libraries to ignore. The first thing libraries looking to provide content and services for mobile users should do is assess their population, since each community is unique.”...
American Libraries column, June/July
The myth of browsing
Pressed by economic realities, hurting for space, and seeing the opportunities offered by existing and emerging information technologies, the director of an academic library announces plans to move some percentage of the library collection—specifically low-use books and bound journals—offsite. The space gained from the move will be used to create areas in which students can study and collaborate. The reaction from faculty and, in some cases, alumni and students? Fury! Although today’s academic library users may feel that browsing is an ancient scholarly right, the practice is in fact no older than the baby-boomer faculty who so often lead the charge to keep books on campus....
American Libraries feature, June/July
On My Mind: A passion for copyright
Sharon M. Britton writes: “Copyright is a subject with which I believe most librarians have a love-hate relationship. I am mostly in the love-it camp, but not necessarily in the love-all-the-regulations-and-guidelines one. I enjoy immensely the detective-work aspect of finding the copyright owner and then requesting permission for use of a copyrighted work. Nothing makes my day more than having a faculty member talk to me about a publication for which permission is needed. Finding the copyright owner and writing for permission, then waiting for a response, is like waiting to see if I’ve won the lottery.”...
American Libraries column, June/July
Green library renovation worth noting
Laura Bruzas writes: “Some days it seems as if the whole country is going green. I know it’s not true, but I keep my fingers crossed that the progress we are making on this front will not only continue but pick up speed. The other day, I learned of another library going green in a big way—Ferndale (Mich.) Public Library. The library, which formally opened in November 1930 with an initial budget of $5,000, recently underwent a $4.5-million addition and facelift that the library’s director, Doug Raber, calls ‘pretty cool.’ Originally 11,000 square feet, the library will now take up a full 21,000 square feet and include a geothermal heating and cooling system, a vegetative roof section, and a gray-water recycling system.”...
AL: Green Your Library blog, May 14
Banners to bags—oh boy!
Laura Bruzas writes: “I love hearing about people like Melissa Records who have been on the green path recycling and reusing materials for years—way before it became the ‘in thing’ that it is today. ‘I like the challenge of figuring out how to make do with the materials that I have on hand,’ says Records, adult services librarian at the Champaign (Ill.) Public Library. Inspired by the bold graphics on the Big Read banner, Melissa thought making bags would be a great way to reuse the banners while creating a useful, visually appealing item that would help promote libraries and reading.”...
AL: Green Your Library blog, May 12
Website offers one-stop shopping for ALA Online Learning Opportunities
ALA Executive Director Keith Michael Fiels today announced the official launch of ALA Online Learning, a new section of the ALA website showcasing all web-based professional development opportunities across the Association. “This new section will allow website visitors to easily find all ALA online training in one place for the first time ever,” Fiels said. The new collaborative catalog is organized into five categories. Delving into the categories leads to more than 20 topics that cover the gamut of practice, trends, and services in librarianship....
AL: Inside Scoop, May 18
Syracuse student to serve as Google Policy Fellow for ALA OITP
Gwen Glazer, a graduate student at Syracuse University pursuing her master’s in library and information studies, was recently selected as the 2010 Google Policy Fellow for ALA’s Office for Information Technology Policy. Google Policy Fellows work for 10 weeks during the summer at other public interest organizations involved in debates on broadband and access policy, copyright reform, online privacy, and open government. Glazer is currently a staff writer and editor for Cornell University Library in Ithaca, N.Y., and has previously served as managing editor for NationalJournal.com....
Washington Office, May 19
ALA advises against bias in Texas curriculum
On May 13, ALA President Camila Alire sent a letter (PDF file) to the Texas State Board of Education expressing “deep concern” over proposed changes to the state’s social studies and history curriculum standards—changes that “appear to emphasize particular viewpoints while de-emphasizing or deleting competing viewpoints, at the expense of balance and accuracy.” Among the concerns that Alire cites is the fact that these standards could directly affect curriculum decisions in other states....
Office of Intellectual Freedom blog, May 19
ALA comments on National Education Technology Plan
ALA says the Department of Education’s National Education Technology Plan presents significant challenges that will take the coordinated effort of many stakeholders to overcome, and libraries are a resource that should be leveraged as the plan’s recommendations are carried out on the state and local levels. ALA filed comments (PDF file) with the Department of Education in response to its call for public comment on the NETP to inform the agency of the ways school libraries integrate innovative technology into our nation’s schools and prepare students to thrive in the 21st century. ALA’s comments focus on the NETP’s sections on learning, teaching, infrastructure, and productivity....
Washington Office, May 19
23 acclaimed poets and authors LIVE! at ALA Annual Conference
The ALA Public Programs Office will present 23 critically acclaimed and bestselling authors and poets on the LIVE! @ your library Reading Stage from noon–4 p.m. June 25 and 26, and from 10 a.m.–1:30 p.m. June 27 in the Exhibits Hall at the upcoming ALA Annual Conference. Attendees can listen to readings from some of their favorite authors and get autographed copies of the authors’ books. Additional information, including reading times and author biographies, is listed at the LIVE! Stage schedule....
Public Programs Office, May 18
Joyce Valenza imagines Library Advocacy Day
Imagine watching the first entry (3:00) in a video contest to promote libraries and celebrate Library Advocacy Day on June 29 in Washington, D.C., as part of ALA’s Annual Conference. Imagine that the video features students inspired by Springfield Township (Pa.) High School librarian Joyce Valenza to sing “Imagine Strong School Libraries” to the melody of John Lennon’s “Imagine” as inspiring images pass before your eyes. Now, imagine that you still have until noon Eastern time, May 26, to upload your own entry. Just follow these rules....
Washington Office, May 17
How Web 2.0 should ALA go?
ALA is planning a web redevelopment in the coming year. To ensure the changes satisfy members’ needs, ALA stakeholders should tell us: Just how Web 2.0 should ALA go? When you visit the ALA website, does it meet your expectations? Would you prefer to be able to customize, personalize, share, comment, and rank? Team J of Emerging Leaders needs to know what you want out of your ala.org experience. Please take 15–30 minutes to fill out this survey....
Information Technology and Telecommunications Services, May 13
Boomers and beyond in today’s libraries
ALA Editions has released Boomers and Beyond: Reconsidering the Role of Libraries, edited by Pauline Rothstein and Diantha Dow Schull. Supporting the growing population of baby boomers is a concern of many librarians. Boomers and Beyond offers ways to be creative and take the initiative in better serving this demographic. The book, divided into three sections, provides a roadmap to a better service model for older patrons....
ALA Editions, May 17
Featured review: Reference
Pong, David (editor). Encyclopedia of Modern China. July 2009. 2,000p. Gale, hardcover (978-0-684-31566-9).
Covering the period 1800 to the present, this attractive and authoritative four-volume set includes 936 entries and sidebars by nearly 500 authors, representing (mostly) universities in the U.S., United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, Germany, Netherlands, Japan, and China (mainland as well as Hong Kong). Each province has a main entry (including a map and a box containing key data), as do major cities, important people, Chinese relations with countries from Australia to Vietnam, and hundreds of miscellaneous subjects. Larger subjects (for example, Architecture, history of; Chinese overseas; Energy; River systems; Social welfare) are subdivided into articles by multiple contributors. Each entry is followed by see also references and a bibliography, mostly of books. With hundreds of high-quality photographs, maps, charts, graphs, and other illustrations, many in color, as well as primary-source documents, this encyclopedia is strongly recommended for academic, public, and high school libraries...
Booklist interview: David Pong
Reviewer Craig Bunch asks the editor of the Encyclopedia of Modern China: “How did you come to include Ma Yinchu’s important 1957 essay, ‘A New Population Theory,’ which is published here in English for the first time?” David Pong answers: “This important piece has become iconic. Ma, president of Peking University and a high-profile public intellectual, made a nuanced and well-founded statement on population and industrialization policy and was ultimately sacked, as his speech was in conflict with party policy. Translation allows readers to more fully understand the context and argument, and to judge for themselves whether Ma or Mao was right.”...
Inside the 2010 Dartmouth Medal Winner
Christine Whittington writes: “Although the content of Encyclopedia of Human Rights is harrowing, Editor-in-Chief David P. Forsythe says it was ‘satisfying to produce a reference work that notes the development of human rights and humanitarian law, and the efforts to see that law implemented.’ When asked about memorable articles, Forsythe cited ‘pieces that could stand alone as major contributions to the subject—for example, the entry on the Armenian genocide in the Ottoman Empire. I was also struck by how some authors could take a standard subject and do something new and insightful with it—for example, the entries on the Holocaust, on Hitler, on Martin Luther King Jr.’”...
@ Visit Booklist Online for other reviews and much more....
Runway delays terminated under new flight rules
The federal government is taking a stronger hand in regulating how airlines treat passengers, and new rules limiting long tarmac delays are just the first step. Even before the latest rules went into effect April 29, the government had fined airlines for violations of existing regulations that cover baggage-reimbursement policies, fare advertising, and compensation when passengers on over-booked flights are denied boarding.
It seems carriers may be getting the message....
New York Times, May 16
A library tour for medicinal purposes
Join ACRL’s newly formed Health Sciences Interest Group June 28 from 1:30–5 p.m. for a free two-hour tour of the National Library of Medicine in Bethesda, Maryland. Transportation will be by Metro, with meet-up details to come. RSVP by May 30....
ALA 2010 Conference Wiki
Smithsonian opens its art libraries to ALA
Attendees of ALA’s Annual Conference are invited to attend an informal open house of the Smithsonian’s resources for American art research June 28, from 2-4 p.m. Four units of the Smithsonian American Art Museum will be opening their doors: The National Portrait Gallery Library, the Research and Scholars Center, the Center for Electronic Research and Outreach Services, and the Archives of American Art. The centers are located just two blocks away from the Washington Convention Center in the Victor Building (750 9th St. NW). RSVP by June 25 to Christine Hennessey....
Party at the Folklife Festival
From June 24 to 28 (and July 1–5 for those lingering in D.C. post-conference), the National Mall will play host to the annual outdoor Folklife Festival extravaganza, presented since 1967 by the Smithsonian Institution’s Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage. Stroll into the free celebration of worldwide diversity that includes daily and evening programs of music, song, dance, celebratory performance, crafts and cooking demonstrations, storytelling, illustrations of workers’ culture, and narrative sessions for discussing cultural issues....
Think globally at the National Geographic Museum
Two free, thought-provoking exhibits coincide with ALA’s Annual Conference, June 24–29, at the Smithsonian’s National Geographic Museum. “Design for the Other 90%” explores design-based low-cost solutions for the 5.8 billion people in the world who often lack access to basic necessities. “Rare: Photographs by Joel Sartore” features images of endangered North American species. Located at 1145 17th Street NW (17th and M Streets NW), the museum is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily....
National Geographic Museum
ACRL 2011 National Conference registration opens
ACRL has opened registration for the ACRL 2011 National Conference, “A Declaration of Interdependence,” to be held March 30–April 2, 2011, in Philadelphia. The ACRL 2011 National Conference will feature more than 300 peer-reviewed sessions specific to the needs of academic and research librarians and staff. Registration materials are now available online. Register by the early-bird deadline of February 4, 2011, and save more than 20% on conference registration. Special group registration prices, reduced airfares, hotel discounts, and scholarships are also available....
ACRL, May 18
ALTAFF to launch “Authors for Libraries”
ALTAFF is launching “Authors for Libraries,” a unique partnership to connect authors with libraries, Friends of the Library groups, and library Foundations and keep authors informed about issues and concerns affecting libraries on a national level. “Authors for Libraries” grew from an idea presented by Marilyn Johnson, author of This Book Is Overdue! How Librarians and Cybrarians Can Save Us All. Authors who join “Authors for Libraries” for $39 will receive a subscription to “The Voice for America’s Libraries,” ALTAFF’s bi-monthly newsletter. In addition, a hyperlink to the authors’ websites will be placed on ALTAFF’s website....
ALTAFF, May 18
Capstone supports Learning4Life
Beginning this summer, AASL and Capstone are teaming up to offer “Empowering 21st Century Learners: P21 Framework and AASL Learning Standards” licensed institutes. Through the generous support of Capstone, funding will be given to 14 groups chosen by AASL to cover 50% of the cost per institute....
AASL, May 13
Rally with AASL for Library Advocacy Day
AASL encourages all school librarians and supporters of school libraries to join together on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., on June 29 to show their support for school libraries. At 10 a.m., AASL members, supporters, and staff will meet on the Hill to raise their voices. Find out more about AASL’s plans for Library Advocacy Day on the AASL website....
AASL, May 13
LLAMA adopts new bylaws
With nearly 100% approval, LLAMA members adopted a new set of bylaws for the organization. The new, less-prescriptive bylaws help create a more nimble organization by eliminating structural legacies that impede the work of members, and will encourage the integration of sections and committees into ongoing strategy development. Key changes include the creation of a smaller board and a larger, more representative executive committee. The new bylaws are online....
LEADS from LLAMA, May 12
Gary White elected RUSA vice president/president-elect
Gary White, acting head of the department of reference collections and research at Pennsylvania State University in University Park, has won election as vice president/president-elect of RUSA.
White joined the PSU Libraries faculty in August 1992 and became head of the Schreyer Business Library in April 2000. He holds an MLS from Kent State University, an MBA from the University of Akron, and is currently pursuing a PhD in higher education at Penn State. He has become a prominent leader within RUSA, including service on its Board of Directors (2006–09)....
RUSA, May 17
ALSC names Great Interactive Software for Kids
ALSC has selected its spring 2010 list of Great Interactive Software for Kids (formerly Notable Computer Software for Children), which recognizes high-quality computer programs and digital media for children age 14 and younger.
The products selected are Disney Online Kerpoof Studios, from Disney Online; Generation Cures: Caduceus, from FableVision; and Zoodles 3.4.4, from Inquisitive Minds. The annotated list, which includes recommended age ratings, is posted at the ALSC website....
ALSC, May 17
ASCLA seeks editor for online membership journal
The deadline for applications for ASCLA’s newsletter editor position has been extended to June 11. Interface, ASCLA’s quarterly online membership journal, serves as the primary source of information and communication between ASCLA and the library and user community. The editor is responsible for the content, format, and timely online publication of Interface. Compensation of up to $1,000 annually will be provided to cover travel to conferences, and the editor receives complimentary registration for both conferences, VIP early registration for hotels, and a one-year membership to ASCLA. More information is posted on the ASCLA blog....
ASCLA, May 17
Call for LITA bloggers at Annual
Cindi Trainor writes: “LITA is seeking volunteers to blog about sessions, speakers, and general conference atmosphere. We would like coverage for as many of the sessions as possible. Visit the BIGWIG LITA Events calendar and pick one (or more) and join the LITA blogging community. Interested? Sign up using this form, and you’ll be added to the schedule. No experience is required, though we would love to see some of our experienced volunteers back again. If you have any questions, email Cindi Trainor....
LITA Blog, May 14
Five receive Library Advocacy Day stipends
YALSA has named the recipients of stipends to attend Library Advocacy Day in Washington, D.C., June 29, in conjunction with ALA Annual Conference. The five YALSA members who each received $1,000 to participate are: Heather Gruenthal, school librarian, Western High School and Orangeview Junior High School, Anaheim, California; Suzanne Larson, school librarian, Bartlett Junior-Senior High School, Webster, Massachusetts; Angie Manfredi, head of youth services, Los Alamos County (N.M.) Library System; Susan Ridgeway, school librarian, Streetsboro (Ohio) City Schools; and Andrea Sowers, young adult librarian, Joliet (Ill.) Public Library....
YALSA, May 17
SLA names Diversity Leadership Development awardee
Nancy Snell, a hearing-impaired information professional at Kurt Salmon Associates in Atlanta, is the recipient of the 2010 Special Libraries Association’s Diversity Leadership Development Program Award. Sponsored by EBSCO, the award includes a $1,000 travel grant and complimentary registration to attend the 2010 SLA Annual Conference and INFO-EXPO, June 13–16, in New Orleans....
Special Libraries Association, May 14
British Library wins Oscar of museum world
The British Library has been awarded the Innovation Award for Timelines: Sources from History by the 2010 Museums and Heritage Awards. The honor recognizes the most innovative use of technology within a museum, gallery, or heritage attraction, including the use of social media and the web, as well as technologies such as AV, multimedia, lighting, and audio guides. Timelines, which launched in January, enables visitors to explore British Library collection items chronologically, as shown here (2:33)....
British Library, May 13
Third Dallas school library wins makeover
The Target School Library Makeover Project and the Heart of America Foundation’s READesign project have selected Dallas (Tex.) Independent School District’s Casa View Elementary School library for a complete makeover this summer. September 21 is scheduled as Opening Day for the redesigned and expanded space, which was originally carved out of two old classrooms....
Dallas Morning News, May 14; Heart of America Foundation
Nominees sought for federal librarianship awards
To honor the many innovative ways in which federal libraries, librarians, and library technicians fulfill the information demands of government, business, research, scholarly communities, and the American public, the Federal Library and Information Center Committee is soliciting nominations for its national awards for federal librarianship for fiscal year 2009. Forms are available here....
Government Video; Federal Library and Information Center Committee
Apply for 2011 National Library Week Grant
Libraries nationwide are invited to apply for the $3,000 Scholastic Library Publishing National Library Week Grant, which will be awarded to a single library for the best public awareness campaign incorporating the 2011 National Library Week theme, “Create your own story @ your library.” The grant is sponsored by Scholastic Library Publishing, and is administered by the Public Awareness Committee of ALA. The deadline is October 1. An application form and guidelines are available on the Scholastic Library Publishing National Library Week Grant website....
Public Information Office, May 18
Reciprocity will end when Michigan library closes
Troy (Mich.) Public Library is likely to be closed by July 1, 2001, and residents are poised to lose privileges at other area libraries, too. “If they have nothing to reciprocate with, we’re not giving them access,” said Christine Lind Hage, director of the Rochester Hills Public Library. In February, Troy voters defeated a millage increase that city officials said would have helped save the library and other facilities. TPL was just ranked the 10th best library in its population size for 2009 by the HAPLR Index...
Detroit Free Press, May 17; Troy Public Library, May 7
Does Jay Leno hate LAPL?
Matthew Fleischer writes: “Wow. Jay Leno has given us yet another reason to hate him. In a painfully, painfully unfunny monologue May 11, Leno ripped (at 3:00 of 4:35) on L.A’s plans to drastically cut the city’s library budget. ‘People here in Los Angeles are upset at the mayor’s proposed plan to cut the budget of libraries. This could affect as many as nine people.’ Leno got no laughs with the crowd and he definitely got no laughs with L.A. City Librarian Martín Gómez, who penned an angry letter to The Tonight Show.The joke is especially unfunny as news broke that library hours will be reduced to save the city cash.” Los Angeles library workers continue to fight the reduction plan....
Fishbowl LA, May 18; The Tonight Show, May 11; Los Angeles Times, May 18
Community works to rebuild flooded school library
Cheatam County Schools’ Kingston Springs (Tenn.) Elementary School was devastated by flooding (1:44) May 2–3, and its library is a total loss, including its collection of more than 8,500 books and 1,000 other items such as DVDs, American Libraries has learned from area resident Jen Brackman. She is helping school officials reach out to rebuild....
WKRN-TV, Nashville, May 10; Kingston Springs (Tenn.) Elementary School
Witnesses say cost, access are largest barriers to broadband adoption
At a hearing in front of the House Subcommittee on Communications, Technology, and the Internet May 13, witnesses told lawmakers that cost and access are the main factors preventing more people from taking advantage of broadband connections. Rivkah Sass (right), director of the Sacramento (Calif.) Public Library System, testified (PDF file) that visits to her library have increased by 50% over the last year as more individuals use library computers to try to find work. She said the library system does not have enough computers or bandwidth to accommodate the rapid increase in demand....
The Hill, May 17; Committee on Energy and Commerce, May 13
Studs Terkel interviews to go online
If someone was an important figure in American culture in the 20th century, chances are he or she was interviewed by Studs Terkel, who died in 2008 at age 96. Under a deal signed May 10 between the Chicago History Museum and the Library of Congress, more than 50 years of Terkel’s interviews will be digitally preserved by LC, which will catalog and house a copy of as many as 7,000 interviews in the Studs Terkel Oral History Archive. The Chicago History Museum will retain ownership and the copyrights to the content. Project officials expect digitizing the collection to take more than two years....
Chicago News Cooperative, May 13; Library of Congress, May 14
Elena Kagan’s theses going online, again
Garance Franke-Ruta writes: “The White House announced May 17 that it would make Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan’s Princeton senior thesis and Oxford graduate thesis available online as ‘a demonstration of our commitment to transparency.’ Princeton had sent news organizations and blogs copies of the thesis for research and personal use purposes but objected when a conservative blog posted the full document online May 15.” The White House also asked Bill Clinton’s presidential library to expedite release of more than 160,000 pages from Kagan’s tenure as a Clinton adviser for the Senate Judiciary Committee’s review. The papers’ release is expected this summer.”...
44 blog, May 17; Associated Press, May 15
Pittsburgh mayor balks at giving library more funds
The City Council in Pittsburgh is preparing to direct $1.24 million to the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, but Mayor Luke Ravenstahl said May 17 that the city was on the hook for only $600,000 and that he wants more information about the system’s financial plans before considering anything more. Council members say that the funds were contingent on CLP keeping all branches open through 2010, and that the mayor’s office had deleted $1 million from the library’s capital budget. Ravenstahl maintains the $1 million was a “typographical error” mistakenly retained after a 1% college-tuition tax proposal was abandoned....
Pittsburgh (Pa.) Post-Gazette, May 18; Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, May 18
Stanford readies bookless library
Decades of past scholarship are being packed up and emptied from the Physics and Engineering libraries at Stanford (Calif.) University to make way for a smaller but more efficient and largely electronic library that can accommodate the vast, expanding, and interrelated literature of physics, computer science, and engineering. The future Engineering Library—on the second floor of the university’s new science and engineering quad that opens later this year—will offer a stark contrast. At only half the size, it saves its space for people, not things. It features soft seating, “brainstorm islands,” a digital bulletin board, and group event space....
San Jose (Calif.) Mercury News, May 18; Speaking of Computers, Apr.
Nylink to wind down operations
Nylink, a nonprofit library cooperative that serves most of New York State’s libraries, colleges and universities, and cultural institutions, will phase itself out over the next year, the group announced May 17, citing “steep declines” in revenue. “Unfortunately, the revenue just isn’t there any longer, and we have no choice but to wind down operations,” W. David Penniman, Nylink’s executive director, said in a written statement....
The Chronicle of Higher Education, May 17
Quincy library advocates: Budget cuts are inequitable
While proposed cuts in school spending have attracted the attention of Quincy, Massachusetts, residents, advocates for city’s libraries say the department is taking a disproportionately big hit, and the city’s most vulnerable could suffer as a result. The libraries, which take up roughly 1% of the city’s nearly $230-million budget, are slated to take a 9% cut in fiscal 2011, compared with the 3.6% cut taken for the schools, which have 37% of the budget, and 3.7% in cuts for the police and fire departments, which together with the other public safety units account for about 17%....
Boston Globe, May 15
Louisville rolls out the red carpet, literally
The front steps of Louisville (Ky.) Free Public Library’s Main Library were covered with a scarlet rug May 15 for its grand reopening nine months after flooding heavily damaged the building. Comments such as “awesome” and “gorgeous” were heard as patrons stepped into the marble-and-brass entryway of the original 1908 Carnegie section, restored with private donations as part of a $12-million project....
Louisville (Ky.) Courier-Journal, May 15
Tarpon Springs library worker attacked
Bystanders chased a transient and held him until police arrived May 12 after he beat up a librarian at Tarpon Springs (Fla.) Public Library, authorities said. According to police, 39-year-old Paul H. Poekert went into the library and started hitting Salvatore Miranda in the face with a closed fist. Miranda, who was taken to Helen Ellis Memorial Hospital, suffered facial fractures and had several lacerations to the right side of his face. The injuries were so severe that Miranda’s right eye was swollen shut....
St. Petersburg (Fla.) Times, May 12
California budget drought threatens water archives
A treasure trove of California’s water history kept at UC Berkeley for more than a half-century could be moved or broken up because of budget cuts.The specialized water-documents archive is the only such collection in the country, supporters say. Founded in 1958 by a special act of the California Legislature, the Water Resources Center Archive consists of a library that houses 120 years of material in a variety of formats, including a strong web-based component that is continuously expanding....
Contra Costa (Calif.) Times, May 17; Book Patrol blog, May 18
British Library to digitize 40 million newspaper pages
The record of over 300 years of journalism, including coverage of the Crimean and Boer Wars, will be going online in a 10-year digitization project, the British Library announced. The digital material will be made free to users at the main library site and be available for a fee to offsite searchers. The British Library’s archive contains about 750 million newspaper pages, including 52,000 local, regional, national, and international titles....
BBC News, May 18; British Library, May 19
Army library gets command of Desert Storm documentation
The Army Logistics University Library in Fort Lee, Virginia, has officially accepted one of the most comprehensive collections of logistical documentation ever donated to an Army professional development school. Retired Lt. Gen. William “Gus” Pagonis donated a collection he has had in his possession since the end of the Persian Gulf War. The documents, reports, and videos detail the logistics behind Operation Desert Storm in 1991. “Every briefing, every interview was taped,” Pagonis said during the May 17 ceremony. “I was hoping that by doing that, we wouldn’t make the same mistakes twice.”...
Petersburg (Va.) Progress-Index, May 18
Dad’s challenge of ghost story gives up the ghost
The Pennichuck Middle School parent who challenged whether Wait Till Helen Comes: A Ghost Story should be in the Nashua, New Hampshire, school library collection has withdrawn his request for reconsideration after learning that the book was not required reading. “I don’t see a need for my son to read a book that talks about people talking to the dead,” Robert McCarthy said, adding, “I’m not going to force my viewpoints on people in the future who want to read that book.”...
Nashua (N.H.) Telegraph, May 13
Go back to the Top
ALA Annual Conference, Washington, D.C., June 24–29.
The 2010 Annual Conference Preshow issue of Cognotes is available. Cognotes is the daily newspaper of the ALA Annual Conference, and is distributed to attendees Friday through Tuesday of the conference. A Highlights issue is mailed to conference attendees and an interactive issue is emailed to all ALA members after the conference.
eCourses are a convenient way to enrich the professional development of all library staff. Train new employees or update general office skills you use every day. Enroll today for 3 hours of self-paced, online training! NEW! From ALA Editions .
Library Applications Programmer, Swarthmore College, Pennsylvania. This position works in a team-oriented environment to administer, support and enhance the library technology infrastructure of the Tri-College Libraries Consortium (Bryn Mawr, Haverford, and Swarthmore Colleges). The incumbent will be responsible for designing, implementing and testing the Tri-College Libraries’ digital services, including integration of information search and retrieval across multiple applications; developing tools for digital content creation, access, and delivery; and administrative tools for library staff. The incumbent will supervise a systems-oriented intern position. Along with the intern, the incumbent will support core information systems for the Tri-College Libraries, including the integrated library system, inter-library loan/document delivery software and systems, digital asset management systems, institutional repositories, and other centrally-served technologies. The position will also actively explore new library technologies and tools for possible use by the Consortium....
Digital Library of the Week
The 1940 booklet A Brief History of
the National Park Service, one of almost 4,000 books, reports, scientific monographs, and articles that comprise The National Park Service E-Library, begins with the legend of Montana lawyer Cornelius Hedges sharing his vision of a “national park” with fellow Yellowstone explorers one autumn night in 1870 from the shadows of a wilderness campfire. (A web edition note goes on to discredit as myth the campfire part.) The collection houses information on all aspects of the NPS mission since its August 25, 1916, founding. Subject matter includes archeological and anthropological research, history and natural history, urban ecology, wildlife, and geology.
Do you know of a digital library collection that we can mention in this AL Direct feature? Tell us about it. Browse previous Digital Libraries of the Week at the I Love Libraries site.
“That’s a funny thought—that I might never have time to read all the books in my own house. I’ll think about that on my way to the library to check out a book to read.”
—“Gimme a Smile” columnist Peggy McKee Barnhill, on her overflowing private library, “Surround Yourself with Books,” Juneau Empire, May 9.
Medical Library Association annual meeting, Washington, D.C., May 21–26 at:
BookExpo America, New York City, May 25–27, at:
American Libraries news stories, videos, tweets, and blog posts at:
Uncommon Commons 2.0,Wesleyan University, Middletown, Connecticut.
Special Libraries Association, Ernest N. Memorial Convention Center, New Orleans.
International Conference on Mobile Systems, Applications, and Services, JW Marriott San Francisco Union Square.
National Information Standards Organization / Book Industry Study Group, Annual Forum, Washington Convention Center, Washington, D.C. “The Changing Standards Landscape.”
Urban Libraries Council, Cosmos Club and Mandarin Hotel, Washington, D.C. “Public Libraries / Public Education: The Role of Public Libraries in Education.”
Emerging Technologies for Library Managers, online. Hosted by Lyrasis.
American Association of Law Libraries, Denver.
ALSC National Institute,
Emory Conference Center Hotel, Atlanta.
LITA National Forum, Hilton Downtown, Atlanta. “The Cloud and the Crowd.”
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Wordpress 3 to launch soon
Jason Griffey writes: “Lots of libraries are using Wordpress as a blog engine or even as a full-fledged CMS to run their website. There’s a new version of Wordpress launching soon, Wordpress 3.0, and it brings with it the largest set of changes and updates in the history of the platform. I’ve been using WP since before it was WP—I think I moved Pattern Recognition over to Wordpress in the 0.6 or 0.7 release. It’s a phenomenal platform for the web, and the 3.0 release brings a slew of new tools and easier implementations.”...
AL: Perpetual Beta, May 17
Five examples of lame DMCA takedowns
Jacqui Cheng writes: “The Digital Millennium Copyright Act serves many purposes, some of which are good, but certain parts of it are ripe for abuse. The infamous DMCA takedown notice is at the top of anyone’s list of most-abused parts of the act. These notices are meant to make it easy for content owners to have violations removed, and they do. But the notices also make it easy for anyone to try and silence criticism or stifle angles they simply don’t like, even if the party in question is working perfectly within the confines of fair use. We’ve seen a number of DMCA takedown cases that were just plain lame. We thought we would highlight some of our ‘favorite’ ones.”...
Ars Technica, May 17
How to get the best of both Google Docs and Microsoft Office
Lowell Heddings writes: “Microsoft Office 2010 is about to be released. Not sure if you should upgrade or switch to Google Docs? Have you considered using the best features of both, together? Below we detail when Google Docs is a better tool for a task than Office (and vice versa). If you want to use Google Docs to collaborate and share documents, but prefer using Microsoft Office to actually put the documents together, your best solution at the moment is to use the OffiSync plug-in.”...
Lifehacker, May 13
Google to offer encrypted search
Google plans to offer encrypted search, it announced May 14. Google’s Marissa Mayer, vice president of search products and user experience, hinted that such a feature was coming May 20 during a question-and-answer session at the company’s annual stockholder meeting. Google began encrypting Gmail traffic using HTTPS (Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure) by default in January after offering it as an option since mid-2008. It’s likely Google will now do the same thing with traffic to Google.com....
Cnet News, May 14
Five best bookmark management tools
Jason Fitzpatrick writes: “The web—and web browsers—evolve extremely quickly, but if there’s one web browsing feature that’s stood the test of time, it’s browser bookmarks. If the only bookmarking you’re doing is simply bookmarking websites in your default browser using the default bookmarking tool, it’s only a matter of time before you either end up with an overwhelming and incomprehensible pile of bookmarks, you lose your bookmarks file through some unforeseen problem, or both. The following tools will help you organize your bookmarks and avoid losing them to the long digital goodnight.”...
Lifehacker, May 16
Put the book in their hands (however we can)
Chris Freeman writes: “This morning, I read the introduction to a novel I’m going to read and came across the mention of an old horror story I'd never heard of, The Wendigo by Algernon Blackwood. Within minutes of first encountering the title, I’d downloaded a complete version of the story completely for free using the Kindle for iPhone app, still in my pajamas on a Saturday morning. So, is this just evidence from a librarian of the impending doom of libraries, then? I’d argue against that conclusion.”...
The Civil Librarian, May 15
HarperCollins CEO: Future lies in hands of consumers
The book trade’s future lies with consumers, not the technology companies driving digital change, the (U.K.) Publishers Association president has claimed. Victoria Barnsley, CEO and publisher at HarperCollins, told delegates at the Book Industry Conference May 17 that consumers “are now just one click away from finding all the content they can consume, anywhere, in whatever form and—frighteningly—for whatever price they’re prepared to pay. As an industry, we ignore the increased power of the consumer at our peril.” Barnsley argued publishers should stop talking about the “digital future,” suggesting instead the industry was living in the digital present....
theBookseller.com, May 17
ABA, ABC eye merger proposal
The boards of directors of the Association of Booksellers for Children and the American Booksellers Association released a letter of agreement May 13 detailing the principles under which the two organizations will pursue further development of a merger proposal. In spring 2009, ABC began exploring a merger with ABA as an option to keep the organization viable in the face of unprecedented change in the industry....
American Booksellers Association, May 13
Seeing the big picture
Gwenda Bond writes: “As baby boomers continue to age, the makeup of the audience for books with larger, easier-to-read type is diversifying, and so are its tastes. You might even need to start picturing a new reader of large print who can be described in an unexpected word: hip. ‘As our readership gets younger and younger, their taste does, too,’ says Jamie Knobloch, publisher at Thorndike Press, which does its own large-print editions as well as distributing those from such publishers as HarperLuxe, Simon and Schuster, and Harlequin....
Publisher’s Weekly, May 10
Short story composed and edited live online
Jason Boog writes: “At Everyday Genius, writer Matt Bell is trying an experiment we’ve never seen before—writing and editing a short story live on the internet. Using the text-editing platform Meeting Words, readers can follow along with Bell as he writes and edits the story. When Bell isn’t writing, you can use the blue sliding bar at the top of the page to go back in time and watch his editing process. On May 20, Bell invites readers to participate in this week-long project by taking over the writing duties for the day. He’ll leave the story open for 12 hours....
Galleycat, May 18; Everyday Genius, May 16
W. Y. Boyd Literary Award recipient named
Seen the Glory: A Novel of the Battle of Gettysburg, by John Hough Jr., is the winner of the 2010 W. Y. Boyd Literary Award for Excellence in Military Fiction. The award honors the best fiction set in a period when the United States was at war. The $5,000 award and citation, donated by author W. Y. Boyd II, recognizes the service of American veterans and encourages the writing and publishing of outstanding war-related fiction. Hough chronicles the lives of two brothers from Martha’s Vineyard as they grow into their teens and enlist in the Union Army...
Office of ALA Governance, May 18
Sci-Fi author offers readers $3,000 in prizes
The search for a new publishing model that takes advantage of the internet continues. Author Peter Riley is giving out $3,000 in prizes to people who’ll read his book, Universes, and answer some questions about it. Riley, a former editor with the London (Ont.) Free Press, has posted his novel online for free and hopes that running contests with cash prizes will “stir up interest on the internet.” He’s been looking for a publisher since he finished the novel in 1999. The contest starts July 4, with prizes ranging from $50 to $100 each....
io9, May 17
School librarian’s poetry recalls Bosnian War
On the library shelves at Virgie Robinson Elementary School in Pasco, Washington, there is one book written by the school librarian. I Was Almost Five is a collection of poems that tell how Vida Zuljevic and her family were forced to flee their home in the former Yugoslavia during the country’s bloody civil war in the 1990s. The book was written from the perspective of Zuljevic’s youngest daughter, Nina, who was just a little girl when the family left their hometown of Mostar. In one passage, Zuljevic tells of a bombing in Sarajevo on Nina’s 5th birthday....
Kennewick (Wash.) Tri-City Herald, May 16
Philippe Claudel wins Independent Foreign Fiction Prize
The winner of the 2010 Independent Foreign Fiction Prize is Brodeck’s Report. French novelist Philippe Claudel shares the award with translator John Cullen for the English edition. The award makes Claudel the second French-language author to take Britain’s leading honor for contemporary literature in translation. As director of the 2009 film I’ve Loved You So Long, Claudel completes a surely unique cross-media double....
The Independent (U.K.), May 14
B.C. libraries, publishers produce free local e-books
British Columbia public and school libraries are making books published in the province available online in an experiment that began May 12. BC Books Online will test consumers’ taste for online reading by making some 650 titles available digitally for free. Nothing is downloadable and the entire collection is searchable through ebrary. Twelve libraries and 18 publishers are participating in what is being reported as an unprecedented library/publisher partnership at an important juncture in the development of new models....
CBC News, May 13; BC Books Online; Library Journal, May 17
Single-link library advocacy sites
Jessamyn West writes: “I am collecting a list of single-link ‘save the library’ sites or other library value advocacy sites. The Save Libraries umbrella site is a good go-to place for general information on funding crises hitting libraries, and ALA has a page with links to some Facebook examples.”...
librarian.net, May 18
21 rules for social media engagement
Brian Solis writes: “Social media is reinventing marketing, communications, and the dissemination of information. Many organizations approach this with the establishment of social media guidelines and policies. This is indeed an important step, and not one worth economizing. But it’s also not enough. I highly recommend establishing official procedures that remind representatives of the importance and privilege of engagement.”...
Mashable, May 18
Share equine tales for Horses in Culture Project
Do you know of a published fiction book for young adults of 11–15, written in or translated into English, in which one or more horses is is essential to the plot and the story represents different cultures and ethnicities, such as (but not limited to) Native American, Spanish, Mexican, Chinese, African American, or German? Gail M. Staines, assistant vice president for university libraries at Saint Louis (Mo.) University and a long-time equestrienne, established the Horses in Culture Project with a Carnegie-Whitney Grant from ALA and seeks to build a searchable database of such stories. She welcomes your suggestions...
Saint Louis University; Horses in Culture Project
How to raise your internal profile as an academic liaison librarian
In the current ﬁnancial climate where every penny counts, raising our internal proﬁle has never been more vital. There are people making decisions on what jobs are vital to the institution’s goals and they are not necessarily aware of what librarians contribute, making our posts vulnerable. It has therefore never been more essential to make non-library colleagues sit up and take notice of the excellent work we do. Here is a summary of various activities librarians engage in to raise their proﬁle....
Research Information Network, May 13
Ning remains free to educators, with restrictions
The social networking website Ning, which many educators have used to establish online groups with similar professional interests, will remain free for K–12 teachers despite moving to a fee-based model this summer. But some education technology experts believe Ning could see dwindling interest in the education community because of new limitations on group sizes and video and chat capabilities....
eSchool News, May 12; Ning blog, May 4
Facebook and privacy: Is this REALLY a big deal?
David Lee King writes: “I’ve seen lots on Facebook privacy issues the last couple of days, some talking about sharing, some about privacy, some just confused about the whole thing. Me? I’m of two minds. So I ask: Is the privacy you (think you) have on Facebook really that big of a deal? On the one hand, of course it is. They should at least tell you they’re going to do something before doing it. And they should let you opt in, rather than forcing you to opt out. On the other hand, what are you trying to keep private? If you really want to know more about me, you can—with or without Facebook.”...
David Lee King, May 17
Is MySpace the new Facebook?
Jennifer Van Grove writes: “Facebook is under fire of late as members threaten a mass exodus and NYU students attempt to build an alternative Facebook. Today MySpace is taking its own jab at Facebook by announcing that the social networking site will soon make the default setting for updates ‘friends only.’ This default privacy change will affect all users who ‘previously had any granular page setting to friends only,’ but can easily be changed as part of MySpace’s new public commitment to privacy.”...
Mashable, May 17; Myspace, May 17
Flip this library
Steven Bell writes: “A few months ago, we were brainstorming to find an engaging, productive activity for our upcoming library student advisory board meeting at Georgia Tech. Dottie Hunt of the Library User Experience Department came up with the idea of using Flip cameras as an interactive tool for assessment. We thought it would be an interesting experiment to ask advisory board members to walk around the library filming the experience from their perspective. We learned that one of the first things that users see when they walk into our building are the backs of the reference staff.”...
Designing Better Libraries, May 18
Old-school collaboration tools that rock
Dawn Foster writes: “For many of us who live and work on the web, playing with the latest and greatest new tools just comes with the territory. I find this constant tool jumping fun and exhilarating; however, not everyone that we need to work with wants to have to learn a new tool in order to collaborate with us online. Sometimes simple “old school’ tools, like IRC (above) and mailing lists, can work just as well as, if not better than, the new tools. In coming back to these established tools, I’m rediscovering why they are so useful for collaboration.”...
WebWorkerDaily, May 14
Tips for library job applicants in a tight market
Meredith Farkas writes: “It wasn’t an easy job market when I was applying more than five years ago (took me nine months of looking to get my first job), and it’s only gotten worse in the past couple years. In a tight market like this, having a good cover letter and résumé can mean the difference between getting a phone interview and ending up in the round file. I’ve written out these tips in the hopes that others can avoid my mistakes. Keep in mind that these tips are just from my point of view, but they were definitely things that made me and my fellow committee members more or less likely to give the applicant further consideration.”...
Information Wants to be Free, May 18
Interview with Marilyn Johnson
In this Longshots podcast (16:56), Sarah Ann Long
talks with Marilyn Johnson, author of This Book Is Overdue: How Librarians and Cybrarians Can Save Us All. Johnson describes what motivated her to write this tribute to the new librarians that have guided her into the digital age. The book features librarians who are taking the profession out into the virtual and real communities they serve, including the Connecticut librarians who challenged the Patriot Act, the librarian who created Radical Reference, and the creators of Second Life....
Library Beat, May 17
Webcasts posted of 2010 WebWise Conference
Sessions are now online from the 2010 WebWise Conference on Libraries and Museums in the Digital World on leading-edge digital technologies that libraries and museums use to share their collections and engage the public. The webcasts focus on the sustainability of digital content, engaging users, new tools and services, essential skills for practitioners, and funding....
Institute of Museum and Library Services, May 10
A treasure chest of author interviews
Gary Price writes: “It’s likely that some of you remember the C-SPAN series, Booknotes, which aired from 1988–2004. For one hour each Sunday C-SPAN Founder Brian Lamm would sit down for a one-on-one interview with an author of a new nonfiction title. While some archived programs have been available for years, the
C-SPAN Video Library now provides access to every program in the series. There are 799 programs available.”...
Resource Shelf, May 18
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