American Libraries Direct
The e-newsletter of the American Library Association | November 17, 2010

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San Diego Update
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American Libraries Online

Surveillance screen capture of UT freshman Colin Tooley entering the UT Austin library unimpeded, despite his AK-47 being in plain viewHow to be prepared in case violence strikes
Beverly Goldberg writes: “The library workplace is no more immune to violent incidents than any other venue, sad to say, and just as vulnerable to physical attacks by troubled colleagues as from visitors. Noting that it’s ‘ingrained in us to stop, drop, and roll’ if we’re caught in a fire, Richard Paustenbaugh, chair of ALA’s Library Safety/Security Discussion Group, asserted, ‘People rarely do any planning for encountering an individual in a violent setting in your building.’”...
American Libraries feature

Scholarship money in library booksGiving out money at the library
Barb Chase writes: “Here’s the problem: How does Suzie Senior find out about the local Kiwanis scholarship? Or the one offered by the local hospital? Or the one offered by the local cancer support group? A reference librarian can gather this information and perform a great service. It is a way we can enhance the library’s value to the community—especially in these economic times. It’s easy.”...
American Libraries feature

American Libraries eGov webinar
As government agencies continue to digitize forms and services, libraries are often the only organizations that can help citizens interact with these agencies and access e-government resources. Register for this free December 9 webinar (2:30–4 p.m. Eastern time), cosponsored by American Libraries, the Office for Research and Statistics, and the ALA Washington Office. Panelists include Judy Hoffman, Nancy Fredericks, John Bertot, and Bill Sudduth....
American Libraries

Turning donated fabric into book bags
Brett Bonfield writes: “The Collingswood (N.J.) Public Library recently put out a call to the creative people in its community who like to sew, either by machine or by hand. The plan is for crafty folks to make one-of-a-kind fabric book bags—which also happen to be good for shopping, toting, and general all-around using—out of donated fabric. The library’s Friends group will then sell the finished bags for $10 each at the library, helping to fund library programs, books, and other projects.”...
AL: Green Your Library, Nov. 11

ALA News

Ted Danson, oceanic environmental activistTed Danson at the Midwinter Meeting
ALA President Roberta Stevens announced November 11 that actor Ted Danson (right) will be featured at her President’s Program on January 9, during the ALA Midwinter Meeting in San Diego. Stevens said that “few realize that over the course of the past 25 years, Danson has devoted himself tirelessly to the cause of heading off a looming global catastrophe—the massive destruction of the oceanic biosystems and the complete collapse of the world’s major commercial fisheries.”...
AL: Inside Scoop, Nov. 12

Neil GaimanBig-name authors at Midwinter
From the Youth Media Awards, the RUSA Book Awards, and the “Spotlight on Adult Literature” to Neil Gaiman (right), Armistead Maupin, Richard Rhodes, Kathy Reichs, and Ted Danson, the ALA Midwinter Meeting promises a rich feast for attendees who enjoy hearing from and interacting with authors. Here’s a day-by-day snapshot of author-related events....
Conference Services, Nov. 16

Michael K. HoneyALA to honor Dr. King’s legacy
Michael K. Honey (right), professor of labor and ethnic studies at the University of Washington Tacoma, will be the keynote speaker at the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Sunrise Celebration during the ALA Midwinter Meeting in San Diego, 6:30–7:30 a.m., January 10. This year’s Sunrise Celebration will be themed “Everybody Can Be Great.”...
Office for Literacy and Outreach, Nov. 16

National Video Game Tournament results
This year’s tournaments for National Gaming Day @ your library were the most successful NGD events yet. The Ann Arbor (Mich.) District Library defeated a strong team from the Topeka and Shawnee County (Kans.) Public Library to take home the NGD10 Super Smash Bros. Brawl tournament crown. And the Average Joes from Chicago Public Library’s YOUmedia won the Rock Band High Score contest. A big thank you to all of the participating libraries and their teams....
National Gaming Day @ your library blog, Nov. 17

Does your community know what respectful discourse sounds like?
Your library’s public programming can be a model of community collaboration, problem-solving, and productive conversation through successful book groups, community forums, and board meetings. Learn more about facilitating positive, engaging, and thought-provoking conversations at “The Art of Discussion Facilitation: Essential Tools for Public Programs and Beyond,” a day-and-a-half Midwinter Institute to be held in San Diego, January 6–7....
Public Programs Office

JobLIST Placement Center to host open house, career counseling
As part of its continuing efforts to help job seekers retool their skills and prepare for job searches, the ALA JobLIST Placement Center will host an open house 10:30 a.m.–noon on January 9, during the ALA Midwinter Meeting in San Diego. Free career counseling sessions by career development coach Caitlin Williams will also be available January 8–9 in the Placement Center....
Office for Human Resource Development and Recruitment, Nov. 16

Call for ALA-APA committee volunteers extended
ALA–Allied Professional Association President-Elect Molly Raphael is seeking applications and nominations for appointments to 2011–2012 ALA-APA committees. The deadline for nominations is now November 30. Appointments take effect at the conclusion of the 2011 Annual Conference. Applicants must complete and submit an electronic volunteer form....
ALA–Allied Professional Association, Nov. 16

Cover of Doing Social Media So It MattersSocial media for libraries
It is difficult enough to keep abreast of social media websites like Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, and LinkedIn, let alone understand how they fit into today’s library. To address that, ALA Editions has released Doing Social Media So It Matters: A Librarian’s Guide by Laura Solomon. This practical resource brings together current information on the topic in a concise format that’s easy to digest....
ALA Editions, Nov. 16

Marketing Public Libraries eCourseNew online marketing course for public libraries
ALA Editions has adapted an online Marketing Public Libraries course from its bestselling book, Bite-Sized Marketing: Realistic Solutions for the Overworked Librarian by Nancy Dowd, Mary Evangeliste, and Jonathan Silberman. This web-based, self-paced tutorial offers a succinct overview of social networking, interactive information sharing, and other technologies ideal for marketing public libraries....
ALA Editions, Nov. 12

Library Supervision eCourseSharpen your supervisory skills
ALA Editions is making available a Library Supervision eCourse adapted from Joan Giesecke and Beth McNeil’s bestselling book, Fundamentals of Library Supervision. This web-based, self-paced tutorial provides information and tools to effectively manage library staff and addresses specific opportunities for both veterans and newcomers to sharpen their management styles....
ALA Editions, Nov. 16

Booklist Online logo

Cover of Decision Points Featured review: U.S. history
Bush, George W. Decision Points. 512p. Nov. 2010. Crown, hardcover (978-0-307-59061-9).
George W. Bush’s decisions were all correct. It was just the aftermath that sometimes became muddled. That, at least, is the impression one gets after reading this surprisingly robust memoir. This is the George Bush who insists that “everybody” believed there were weapons of mass destruction, that much of the blame for the post-Katrina fiasco should be put on Louisiana’s local governments, and that Harriet Miers would have made a fine Supreme Court justice, but there are also some fascinating reveals, including his affection for Ted Kennedy, his sometimes-complicated relationship with Dick Cheney, and his read-between-the-lines digs at Colin Powell. Smartly dividing the book into themes rather than telling the story chronologically, Bush offers readers a genuine (and highly readable) look at his thought processes as he made huge decisions that will affect the nation and the world for decades....

Graphic for Board Game Starter KitBoard game starter kit
Scott Nicholson writes: “There is a long history of board and card games in libraries. Bridge, Scrabble, and chess have been played in libraries for decades; in fact, the oldest U.S. chess club was started in a library in the 1850s and still meets there. Just as libraries offer other forms of media created recently, libraries should add modern board games to their collections of classics. Here are seven tabletop games that are engaging and easy to learn, can be played and completed quickly, and will draw patrons in with queries of ‘What is that?’ and ‘Can I try?’”...

Graphic for Video Game Starter KitVideo game starter kit
J. P. Porcaro writes: “My early memories of libraries are nostalgic and warm, full of good experiences. I have those feelings for video games, too. Memories of my entire family and all our friends sitting around our Nintendo Entertainment System, laughing and playing Super Mario Bros. 3, are the most cherished moments of my childhood. I cherish those memories because of the time I spent with others. Combining the experience of video games and the experience of libraries is a perfect fit as we transform libraries from temples of books to centers for community engagement. for librarians who haven’t started their own video-game programs, these two collections offer great starting points, in the words of Toadstool in SMB3, that should ‘help you on your way.’”...

@ Visit Booklist Online for other reviews and much more....

San Diego Update

UCSD's Geisel LibraryUCSD’s Geisel Library: Urban legends
Geisel Library, the University of California, San Diego’s largest library, has its fair share of urban legends. Its staff repeatedly has to separate the fact from the fiction for patrons, so Barbara Henderson and Charles (Bud) Stem put together this FAQ that clarifies which films and TV shows the library has actually appeared in, whether Dr. Seuss gave money to build the library, whether it is sinking because of the weight of the books, and the truth about the rooftop dissertation toss....
UCSD Libraries

Graphic for Strange Bones exhibitSan Diego Museum of Man
The exhibitions of the world-renowned Museum of Man, at 1350 El Prado in Balboa Park, are a major resource for the San Diego community. Permanent exhibits explore the Maya, ancient Egypt, the Kumeyaay Indians of San Diego County, human evolution, and the human life cycle. The exhibits are used extensively in the region’s school curricula to study ancient history, local history, indigenous cultures, and health sciences. A new special exhibit, “Strange Bones: Curiosities of the Human Skeleton,” opened in October....
San Diego Museum of Man

Up in arms over airport security
If you could put three faces on the emerging public reaction to new government procedures for screening airline passengers, they’d be anger, resignation, and confusion. Thanksgiving travelers who haven’t flown recently will for the first time encounter full-body scans that can see under clothing, and possibly “enhanced pat-downs” that require TSA officers to run their hands over the genitals of same-gender passengers to look for hidden objects. At the San Diego airport on November 13, a man calling himself Johnny Edge refused both the scan and the grope and was threatened with $10,000 in fines; he recorded the encounter. The ACLU is looking into reports of pat-down abuse....
Chicago Tribune, Nov. 15; <insert title here>, Nov. 13–14; ACLU, Oct. 29

Division News

First issue of Journal of Research on Libraries and Young Adults
In November, YALSA launched the inaugural issue of its new, open-access, peer-reviewed electronic research journal, the Journal of Research on Libraries and Young Adults. The journal will be published quarterly, with issues following in February, May, and August. The first issue highlights paper presentations from YALSA’s Young Adult Literature Symposium, held November 5–7 in Albuquerque....
YALSA, Nov. 16

Register for “Genealogy Happens!”
Advance registration will close November 29 for “Genealogy Happens! At the Genealogy Reference Desk,” a 2011 Midwinter Institute offered by the ALA genealogy experts, the RUSA History Section. This full-day event, sponsored by ProQuest, is a not-to-be-missed learning experience for reference librarians of all levels of expertise, with coverage of both basic genealogy reference skills and more detailed topics....
RUSA, Nov. 16

Online course on “The Reference Interview”
Librarians and staff at all types of libraries looking to improve their performance at the reference desk are encouraged to sign up for “The Reference Interview,” an online course offered by RUSA from November 29 through January 14. Taught by renowned reference librarian David Tyckoson, the course is administered using Moodle, an online management tool. Registration for this course is open through November 23....
RUSA, Nov. 15

ACRL e-Learning call for proposals
ACRL is now accepting proposal submissions for the ACRL e-Learning program. Submissions are being accepted for live webcasts and asynchronous online courses. Proposals must be submitted via the online submission form by December 17. The full call for proposals, including a link to the submission form, is online....
ACRL, Nov. 11

Catch up on teen services trends
School librarians, teen services librarians, young adult librarians, and others who work with teens in libraries can now access previously recorded YALSA webinars. While YALSA members will continue to enjoy complimentary access to archived webinars, all others can purchase previously recorded sessions for $19 per webinar. The webinars are hour-long sessions led by experts who offer guidance on the latest trends....
YALSA, Nov. 16

AASL membership gets even more rewarding
From September 1 through December 31, new or renewing AASL members will receive 10,000 Capstone Rewards points that can be redeemed for books with Capstone and their collective imprints. These Capstone Rewards points are valued at $100 and are a gift simply for being a member of AASL....
AASL, Nov. 16

ALTAFF logoNational Friends of Libraries Week survey
ALTAFF is seeking feedback from Friends of the Library groups to help shape the future of National Friends of Libraries Week. Library directors and library staff who work with Friends groups are also invited to respond to the short survey. Reponses will help determine whether to keep the celebration in October or move it to another time of the year, what additional resources and materials ALTAFF should develop, and how groups celebrate the event in their community. The survey will be open through December 15....
ALTAFF, Nov. 11

ASCLA Virtual Convergence webinars
ASCLA invites all members of the library community to engage in online learning with the 2011 Virtual Convergence—a series of professional development webinars (PDF file) that will be held in January immediately following the ALA Midwinter Meeting. The Convergence will offer one-hour webinars January 18–21 on many topics that will appeal to a broad range of library types and job functions....
ASCLA, Nov. 10

Present a YALSA poster session
The YALSA Research Committee invites library and information science faculty, students, and practicing librarians to propose a poster session at the ALA Annual Conference in New Orleans, June 23–28. Posters may represent any portion of the researcher’s or research team’s work, including the theoretical framework, research methodology, findings, and conclusions. For guidelines, read over the YALSA Research Agenda. Applications are due by January 31....
YALSA, Nov. 16

Call for Table Talk presenters
YALSA is trying something new at the 2011 ALA Annual Conference in New Orleans—a Table Talk presentation. Instead of one topic dominating an entire presentation session, the Teen Services Mashup Table Talks will have multiple sessions running simultaneously, allowing attendees to get a broad sampling of ideas in a short amount of time. If you want to share some of your ideas, apply to be a presenter by March 4....
YALSA Blog, Nov. 12


Nashville Public Library’s Civil Rights Room honors the many Nashville students and citizens who played a critical role in the lunch counter sit-ins and freedom rides in the Civil Rights Movement. Photo by Gary LaydaFive libraries win National Medal
The Institute of Museum and Library Services has selected five libraries and five museums to receive the 2010 National Medal for Museum and Library Service. The National Medal is the nation’s highest honor for museums and libraries that make extraordinary civic, educational, economic, environmental, and social contributions. The library winners are Nashville (Tenn.) Public Library (right); Patchogue-Medford (N.Y.) Library; Peter White Public Library, Marquette, Michigan; Rangeview Library District and Anythink Libraries, Adams County, Colorado; and West Bloomfield Township (Mich.) Public Library. Watch the IMLS video (6:01)....
Institute of Museum and Library Services, Nov. 16; YouTube, Nov. 16

Family Literacy Involvement Program graphicFLIP workshop winners
ALSC has announced the winners of an all-expense-paid family literacy training workshop at the Children’s Museum of Houston, funded through a National Leadership Grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services. ALSC is a national dissemination partner in the grant. Ten ALSC members partnered with their local children’s museum for the Family Literacy Involvement Program (FLIP) workshop to be held at the CMH on May 18, 2011....
ALSC, Nov. 10

Nominations sought for Hamilton lifetime achievement award
ALA is accepting nominations for the Coretta Scott King–Virginia Hamilton Practitioner Lifetime Achievement Award. The award pays tribute to the quality and magnitude of author Virginia Hamilton’s exemplary contributions through her literature and advocacy for children and youth, especially in her focus on African-American life, history and consciousness. Nominations (Word file) will be accepted through December 15....
Office for Literacy and Outreach Services, Nov. 12

Submit a paper for the LITA student writing award
LITA is offering an award for the best unpublished manuscript submitted by a student or students enrolled in an ALA-accredited graduate program. Sponsored by LITA and Ex Libris, the award consists of $1,000, publication in Information Technology and Libraries (ITAL), and a certificate. The deadline for submission of the manuscript is February 28....
LITA, Nov. 16

IGI Global’s Midwinter Meeting travel stipend
Publisher IGI Global has launched an Excellence in Academic Librarianship Award that will provide one librarian with a $500 stipend for his or her attendance at the ALA 2011 Midwinter Meeting in San Diego. To apply, submit a 250-word essay by December 10 that describes how the Midwinter Meeting will expand knowledge of how publishers and librarians can best interact to further the availability of knowledge resources....
IGI Global

Ray Turner, SCLA President, at the Spectrum fundraiserSouth Carolina Library Association supports Spectrum
The South Carolina Library Association has announced its support of the ALA Spectrum Scholarship Program and the Spectrum Presidential Fundraising Initiative. SCLA sponsored a fundraiser on October 21 and raised more than $600 in contributions. Those in attendance enjoyed food and fellowship as they learned about the importance of the Spectrum Scholarship in encouraging increased diversity in the library profession....
Spectrum Scholarship Program, Nov. 12

Giant postcard from contest winner John F. Germany Library exhibitFrommer’s 2010 Library Display Contest winners
Travel-guide publisher Frommer’s (an imprint of Wiley) has announced the winners of its 2010 Library Display Contest. The grand prize went to the John F. Germany Library in Tampa, Florida, for its interactive display that spanned five floors of the library and featured giant postcards with images of destinations across the globe. The postcards, complete with an Arthur Frommer stamp and postmark, doubled as a photo-op by allowing people to insert themselves into each scene (above)....
Wiley, Nov. 15

Cynthia DeFelice2010 Empire State Award
Cynthia DeFelice is the 2010 recipient of the Empire State Award for Excellence in Literature for Young People, which was presented November 5 by the New York Library Association’s Youth Services Section. The award honors a living author or illustrator living in New York State for a body of work that represents excellence in children’s or young adult literature. DeFelice is the author of Signal (Farrar, 2009) and 28 other books....
New York Library Association, Nov. 5

Cover of FishtailingSchool librarian wins Governor General Literary Award
Wendy Phillips, school librarian at the A. R. MacNeill Secondary School in Richmond, British Columbia, has won the Governor General Literary Award for fiction for her first novel, Fishtailing. The YA work tells the story of four teenagers through poems, with each piece of free verse in a character’s voice and presented as an English-class assignment. “My inspiration comes from my students all the time,” Phillips said. Administered by the Canada Council for the Arts, the $25,000 award is given annually to the best English-language and French-language books....
Vancouver (B.C.) Sun, Nov. 16; Canada Council for the Arts

Cover of Withering TightsRoald Dahl Funny Prize
Louise Rennison has won Roald Dahl’s 2010 Funniest Book for Children in the 7–14 age group for Withering Tights (HarperCollins), the first in a planned trilogy about the misadventures of Tallulah Casey. Louise Yates won in the category of Funniest Book for Children Aged Six and Under, with Dog Loves Books (Jonathan Cape), her tale about a dog who loves books. Established in 2008 by then–U.K. Children’s Laureate Michael Rosen, the £2,500 awards ($3,977 U.S.) are given by the Booktrust, an independent charity in the United Kingdom....
The Guardian (U.K.), Nov. 17

Cover of One Day, by David NichollsGalaxy National Book Awards
The winners of the 2010 Galaxy National Book Awards, designed as a celebration of the best in British publishing, were announced at a star-studded gala awards ceremony held at the BBC Television Centre November 10. One Day by David Nicholls won the Popular Fiction Book of the Year Award, while Zog, a dragon tale by Julia Donaldson and illustrator Axel Scheffler, won the Children’s Book of the Year Prize. American author Jonathan Franzen won the International Author of the Year Award for Freedom....
BBC News, Nov. 10

Cover of Dog Boy, by Eva HornungPrime Minister’s Literary Awards
The winners of the 2010 Prime Minister’s Literary Awards were announced November 8 by Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard at a special ceremony in Melbourne. The 2010 Fiction category winner was Dog Boy by Eva Hornung. The Children’s Award went to Star Jumps by Lorraine Marwood, and the Young Adult winner was Confessions of a Liar, Thief, and Failed Sex God by Bill Condon. Each of the category winners receives $100,000 ($97,346 U.S.)....
ABC News, Nov. 8

Model of a gravitational lens, from the Starts with a Bang! blogThe best physics websites
The 2010 Web Awards honor the best sites dedicated to physics education and news. For every category, science fans nominated their favorite sites, and judges voted from the top five nominees. Theoretical physicist Ethan Siegel’s blog, Starts with a Bang!, which covers many topics from strange matter to why the dinosaurs went extinct, won both as best blog and as people’s choice...., Nov. 15

Seen Online

Paula Kiely, director of the Milwaukee Public Library, from the CBN newscastPublic libraries and cutbacks
The Christian Broadcasting Network aired a story (4:16) on the increasing use of public libraries in the United States, coupled with a decline in their funding. The newscast featured interviews with ALA Executive Director Keith Michael Fiels and Paula Kiely (right), director of the Milwaukee Public Library....
CBN News, Nov. 11

Students at the Queens LibraryThe library’s expanded mission
Steve Lilienthal writes: “Working on Sundays at the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library in Washington, D.C., I saw many people using computers to work on college papers, résumés, and job applications. It was a busy place. But nothing prepared me for the sights I saw when visiting the Queens (N.Y.) Public Library. On a Monday afternoon, the children’s room is packed. Teens and older adults are in the adult section, using computers, reading newspapers. When budgeting next year, New York City and state officials should keep in mind that public libraries are serving the public well. They are far from obsolete.”...
City Limits Magazine, Nov. 17

The next big idea: Digital humanities
Members of a new generation of digitally savvy humanists argue it is time to stop looking for inspiration in the next political or philosophical “ism” and start exploring how technology is changing our understanding of the liberal arts. This latest frontier is about method, they say, using powerful technologies and vast stores of digitized materials that previous humanities scholars did not have. But most humanities professors remain unaware or unconvinced that digital humanities has much to offer. Even historians, who have used databases before, have been slow to embrace the trend....
New York Times, Nov. 16

Old Carnegie library, Springfield, Ill., ca. 1910Remnants of Springfield’s Carnegie Library unearthed
While clearing out a back lot near the northeast corner of the Illinois State Fairgrounds, Illinois Department of Agriculture employees stumbled on remnants of the 1904 Andrew Carnegie–funded Lincoln Library in Springfield, including parts of its ornate entranceway decorated with carved human and animal figures. The library was razed in 1974, but pieces of it were retained in what ground crews informally call the “bone yard.” Lincoln Library Director Nancy Huntley remembers discussions about what to do with the leftover Carnegie pieces....
Springfield (Ill.) State Journal-Register, Nov. 10

Screen shot of Bush Library groundbreaking from WFAA-TVBush Presidential Library groundbreaking at SMU
With ceremonial shovels of red dirt, former President George W. Bush, Laura Bush, former Vice President Dick Cheney, and other dignitaries on November 16 kicked off construction of the George W. Bush Presidential Center at Southern Methodist University in Dallas. The library complex, designed by Robert A. M. Stern Associates, will open by February 2013. It will include a museum, a library and archives, a policy institute, and gift shops and cafés....
Dallas Morning News, Nov. 16; WFAA-TV, Dallas/Fort Worth, Nov. 16

Kurt Vonnegut's typewriterKurt Vonnegut Memorial Library offers a sneak peek
A special open house November 12 introduced the Kurt Vonnegut Memorial Library to Indianapolis residents. Hundreds of people worked their way through the in-progress space, viewing historical artifacts related to Vonnegut’s life (such as his typewriter, his Purple Heart, and an unopened letter from his father sent to him during WWII), several paintings by Vonnegut himself, and the 20-foot-long mural Star Time, which presents a timeline of important events in the author’s life. Founder and President Julia Whitehead had the idea for the library in November 2008....
Indianapolis Star, Nov. 10

Library in P.S. 9, Prospect Heights. Screen shot from WCBS-TV newscastBrand new Brooklyn school library, but no librarian
After more than six years of having no library at all, P.S. 9 in Prospect Heights, Brooklyn, has a beautiful new one. The Book Hive, as it is called, officially opened November 12, only to promptly shut its doors. The library, which serves two schools sharing the same building, will remain inactive until the schools can hire a librarian. Parents spearheaded the effort to fund and build the half-million-dollar project, but because of budget cuts, the New York Department of Education said it can’t afford to hire anyone to staff the new space....
New York Times: The Local, Nov. 16; WCBS-TV, New York City, Nov. 15

Director Kristine Sutton. Screen shot from newscastPaint vandals hit Newstead library
Gallons of paint were poured from the roof of the Newstead Public Library in Akron, New York, early on the morning of November 12, covering the back windows, walls, and patio-reading area. Library Director Kristine Sutton (above) said the library’s prized bronze statues, a gift from a local family, were not spared and might not be repairable....
WGRZ-TV, Buffalo, N.Y., Nov. 13

This undated photo of a school or library in Sonoma County is one of the pictures about which little is known that Sonoma State University is seeking help withSonoma State University’s mystery photos
Most of the time, research librarians don’t get much fan mail. But when Lynn Prime, digital projects librarian at Sonoma State University in Rohnert Park, California, took on the task of digitally storing a collection of 850 photographs taken throughout Sonoma County in the 1970s, she soon realized she needed help. So she approached the Santa Rosa newspaper, hoping to enlist the community’s help in identifying the pictures and collecting background details....
Santa Rosa (Calif.) Press Democrat, Nov. 13

Chris Letizia, BPL assistant book conservator, holds an 1840 illustration depicting the slave revolt aboard the Amistad in 1839. Screen shot from the videoVoices of abolition, restored
For more than a century, the Boston Public Library’s special collections department has held a vast trove of letters, newspapers, books, pamphlets, and artifacts from the personal collections of the six Weston Sisters, who formed the Boston Female Anti-Slavery Society in 1833. Thanks to an anonymous $600,000 pledge through the nonprofit, independently operated Associates of the Boston Public Library, the collection is being preserved and made available for the first time on the library’s website. Watch the video (1:56)....
Boston Globe, Nov. 10

Elgin trustee suspended from the library a third time
A Gail Borden Public Library trustee has been suspended from the Elgin, Illinois, library for the third time. Randy Hopp cannot go on the grounds of the main library or the Rakow branch and can only attend board meetings with a security escort until June 2012 because of his treatment of library staff. Executive Director Carole Medal said Hopp has repeatedly displayed “aggressive, scary behavior,” including a recent incident in which he demanded library documents....
Chicago TribLocal, Nov. 12

Announcement for Agie's retirement party. Screen shot from New England Cable News reportOregon library cat retires to avoid eviction
On November 11, the Willamina, Oregon, city council voted 4–0 with one abstention to exclude all animals with the exception of service animals from public buildings. That means 14-year-old Agatha (“Agie”) Christie, the community’s beloved library cat, had to find a new home. Head Librarian Melissa Hansen and Youth Services Librarian Denise Willms found one for the 14-year-old feline and decided to hold a retirement party November 20. Watch the video (1:49)....
McMinnville (Oreg.) News-Register, Nov. 12; New England Cable News, Nov. 13

Rosemany Dunstan at the Great Wall of China. Photo from Henley StandardWalking the Great Wall for cancer research
Rosemary Dunstan has completed her latest charity challenge by trekking along the Great Wall of China. Dunstan, the manager of Sonning Common Library in South Oxfordshire, England, was in a group that spent seven days walking up to seven hours a day along the Wall to raise money for the Institute of Cancer Research....
Henley (U.K.) Standard, Nov. 16

Law school furious over Diesel lingerie ad
The Brooklyn Law School events director who sat idly by during a racy Diesel photo shoot (possibly NSFW) in the library never told administrators that it involved a parade of underwear-clad men and women lounging among the law books. They didn’t find out until eight months afterwards, when shocked students started seeing the sexy photos on the clothing company’s website. Staffer Chris Gibbons had presided over the provocative photo shoot in March during the school’s spring break. When the Italian clothing company rented the library for the session, officials thought that models would merely don Diesel denim....
New York Post, Nov. 12

Naked NCSU student knocks library books from shelves
A freshman was charged with assault and indecent exposure November 10 after he was found naked and knocking some 1,400 books off the shelves on the ninth floor of North Carolina State University’s D. H. Hill Library. Police found Seth Pace just after 11 p.m. without his clothes, “agitated and in an altered mental state.” A crowd of about 15 people stood by and watched the incident, and at least one video of the incident was posted online....
NCSU Technician, Nov. 12

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Tech Talk

Rep. Richard Nixon examines microfilm relating to the Alger Hiss espionage case, 1948Saving our data from digital decay
Digital objects require specific software to open and read them, which in turn requires specific operating systems, device drivers, and hardware to run them. Though the 0s and 1s of digitized information can succumb to the vagaries of technological change, analogue archives will always be readable to future generations. Steffen Schilke and Andreas Rauber contend that e-government archives might be safely stored using an alternative to digital media—the microfilm format beloved of spy fiction....
Science Daily, Nov. 16; International Journal of Electronic Governance 3, no. 3

Infinitube logo12 fun hacks for getting more out of YouTube
Amy-Mae Elliott writes: “Plain old YouTube can be tons of fun, but when you get bored watching clips the traditional way, there are many sites that can help enhance the experience. The web community is known for creating hacks that improve your surfing experience; now we’ve dug into some of those tools and hacks built around YouTube. Here are our 12 choices.”...
Mashable, Nov. 13

Asus U45Jc-A1The top 10 laptops
Laarni Almendrala Ragaza writes: “The editors of PC Magazine test hundreds of systems each year to help you find the best laptop. There are a lot of them out there, from the large-screen desktop replacements to the lightweight ultraportables, but all share common features. In this story, we help you narrow your choices by reviewing the top 10 laptops on the market today.”...
PC Magazine, Nov. 9

A geek who is losing his geek credIt’s all about geek cred
For Friday Fun, Stephen Abram has gathered three lists by which you can measure your geek credibility: The top 10 geek sins that will get your geek cred revoked, earn geek cred by doing these 15 things, and advanced geek cred....
Stephen’s Lighthouse, Nov. 12; ZDNet: Between the Lines, Oct. 22; TechRepublic, Aug. 6 introduces URL bundles
Jolie O’Dell writes: “Link-sharing service has just launched a new tool for people who really, really love sharing links. Bundles allow you to package multiple long links in a single shortened URL. This is a highly useful feature with an almost endless string of use cases. You can tweet a string of YouTube videos or post a collection of study materials to Facebook—all with just one short URL.”...
Mashable: Social Media, Nov. 15

F1 app logoMozilla develops social skills with F1
Seth Rosenblatt writes: “Mozilla quietly introduced last week a new add-on for Facebook, Twitter, and Gmail users. F1 is a secure and unobtrusive add-on that provides fast sharing of URLs via a dedicated navigation-bar button. It mimics one of the best features found in social-networking browsers without having to deal with the hassle of switching browsers, although the add-on is definitely still a bit rough.” Watch the video (1:31)...
CNET News: The Download Blog, Nov. 15; Mozilla Labs

Boxcar 4.0 logoBoxcar 4.0: An indispensable iPhone notifications app
Matt Buchanan writes: “Currently, Boxcar is a most excellent app that straightforwardly pushes notifications from services like Twitter and Facebook to the iPhone. Boxcar 4.0 is going to make your iPhone feel like it has a million, constantly connected tentacles.” M. G. Siegler adds: “For example, notifications from Twitter now show up complete with the user’s profile picture. And you can retweet or reply to any of those messages right from within Boxcar.”...
Gizmodo, Nov. 12; TechCrunch, Nov. 12

Reeder appThe best RSS reader apps
John Herrman and Casey Chan write: “Reading news on a smartphone is a pain, unless you have a good RSS app. Here are the best. For iOS the Gold Medal goes to Reeder, which has a smooth, intuitive and readable interface, especially after the high contrast option is enabled. For Android, the gold goes to gReader, which can load full articles from truncated feeds and gives you the option to flip through articles with your phone’s volume buttons.”...
Gizmodo, Nov. 11

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ALA Midwinter Meeting in San Diego, California, January 7–11, 2011. Join colleagues for An Afternoon with Neil Gaiman and Nancy Pearl, 2–3 p.m., January 9. Librarian and NPR commentator Nancy Pearl will interview Newbery and Carnegie Medal–winner Neil Gaiman.

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Emma Watson has starred as Hermione Granger in all of the Harry Potter films, for which she has been recognized with a number of awards. In this Celebrity READ poster, she is holding Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. NEW! From ALA Graphics.

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Great Libraries of the World

Enoch Pratt Free Library

Enoch Pratt Free Library, Baltimore, Maryland. Founded in 1882 by industrialist and banker Enoch Pratt, the library opened its central building in January 1886, followed by four branches within the next three months. The current facility was constructed in 1931–1933 and significantly expanded and renovated in 2003. The new wing contains the Maryland and African American departments, as well as special collections and extensive materials related to the life and work of Baltimore journalist H. L. Mencken.

George Peabody Library, Johns Hopkins University

George Peabody Library, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland. The historic collection of the Peabody Institute, established in 1857 as a music conservatory, has served students at the Johns Hopkins Peabody campus since 1982. It opened in 1878 and was designed by Baltimore architect Edmund George Lind in collaboration with Nathaniel H. Morison, who described it as a “cathedral of books.” The Greek Revival interior features an atrium that soars 61 feet to a latticed skylight surrounded by five tiers of ornamental cast-iron balconies and gold-scalloped columns. In accordance with the provisions of George Peabody’s original gift, the library is a noncirculating collection open to the general public.

This AL Direct feature showcases 250 libraries around the world that are notable for their exquisite architecture, historic collections, and innovative services. If you find yourself on vacation near one of them, be sure to stop by for a visit. The entire list will be available in The Whole Library Handbook 5, edited by George M. Eberhart, which is scheduled for publication in 2011 by ALA Editions.

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Public Services Librarian, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum, Cleveland, Ohio. The Public Services Librarian reports to the Director of Library and Archives and coordinates all aspects of public services functions for the Library and Archives and its users. Required: Master’s degree from an ALA-accredited program in library or information science; three or more years experience providing reference service and instruction in a music library or archives, preferably in an academic setting; experience in library instruction and/or other teaching experience; knowledge of public services policies and practices in music libraries; understanding of key issues and current trends in music library reference service; knowledge of music literature and resources used in music libraries....

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Digital Library of the Week

A group of beggars in Kabul. Photo by John Burke, Curzon Collection: Afghan War 1879-1880. Photo 430/3(57)

The Digital South Asia Library provides digital materials for reference and research on South Asia to scholars, public officials, business leaders, and other users. This project builds upon a two-year pilot project funded by the Association of Research Libraries’ Global Resources Program with support from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Participants in the Digital South Asia Library include leading U.S. universities, the Center for Research Libraries, the South Asia Microform Project, the Committee on South Asian Libraries and Documentation, the Association for Asian Studies, the Library of Congress, the Asia Society, the British Library, the University of Oxford, the University of Cambridge, MOZHI in India, the Sundarayya Vignana Kendram in India, Madan Puraskar Pustakalaya in Nepal, and other institutions in South Asia. DSAL is a project of the Center for Research Libraries and the University of Chicago. Image collections include the Glenn Hensley Photo Library (World War II), the American Institute of Indian Studies, the Government College of Arts and Crafts in Chennai, the Oriental and India Office Collections, and the Robert Keagle and Frank Bond photo libraries (World War II).

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.

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“I believe in simplicity. One of my favorite expressions is, ‘It’s better to light one candle than to curse the darkness.’ Every time that a library closes, we blow a candle out.... You need to make the case in a rather dramatic way—that this is like eating seed corn. It makes no sense.”

—Political consultant and commentator James Carville on how to fight library closings, keynote address, Special Libraries Association, Annual Conference, June 13.

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National Council of Teachers of English, Annual Convention, Orlando, Florida, Nov. 18–21, at:

American Libraries news stories, videos, tweets, and blog posts at:


Feb. 18–20:
Alaska Library Association,
Annual Conference, Centennial Hall, Juneau.

Feb. 27–
Mar. 1:

National Federation of Advanced Information Services,
Annual Conference, Hyatt at the Bellevue, Philadelphia. “Taming the Information Tsunami: The New World of Discovery.”

Mar. 6–12:
Teen Tech Week.

Mar. 9–11:
12th International Symposium on Information Science,
University of Hildesheim, Germany.

Mar. 16:
Freedom of Information Day.

Mar. 23–25:
Tennessee Library Association,
Annual Conference, Embassy Suites and Convention Center, Murfreesboro.

Apr. 2–9:
Money Smart Week.

Apr. 10–16:
National Library Week.

Apr. 12:
National Drop Everything and Read Day.

Apr. 13:
National Bookmobile Day.

Apr. 24–30:
Preservation Week.

Apr. 30:
El día de los niños/El día de los libros
(Children’s Day/Book Day).

May 5–6:
Academic Libraries 2011,
Amway Grand Plaza, Grand Rapids, Michigan. Sponsored by the Michigan Library Association. “Innovate, Collaborate, Connect.”

May 9–10:
National Library Legislative Day.

May 14–17:
Acquisitions Institute,
Timberline Lodge, Mt. Hood, Oregon.

May 15–17:
Ohio Valley Group of Technical Services Librarians,
Conference, Miami University, Oxford, Ohio. “Technical Services Renaissance.”

May 21–26:
Patent Information Users Group,
Annual Conference, Hyatt Regency, Cincinnati. “Best Practices Beyond Free-Text: The Value of Indexing and Classification When Searching and Analyzing Patents.”

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This Bollywood movie is more a rip-off of Home Alone than of the Harry Potter books/films, except for the main character's name. That didn't stop Warner Bros. from filing a lawsuit, howeverDid these fantasy stories really rip off Harry Potter?
Charlie Jane Anders and Michael Ann Dobbs write: “In Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, opening next week, there are seven Harry Potters. But in real life, there have been way more Potters than that. Here’s the complete list of stories that people have accused of copying Potter. Back in the day, it used to be that everybody accused Harry Potter of being an imitation of some older fantasy story—but now it’s the other way around.”...
io9, Nov. 11–12

The battle for the right to lend e-books
Tom Peters writes: “The battle for the right to lend e-books has begun. It is being fought in board rooms, in backrooms, and in bedrooms. It is being fought at sales counters and at circulation counters, by web counters and by bean counters. If I had it in me, this is the point where I would launch into some rousing rhetoric. Alas, I don’t have it in me, so let’s just look at some recent developments.”...
ALA TechSource Blog, Nov. 15

Building an e-reader collection at Duke University
Sue Polanka writes: “I attended this fabulous and informative session during the Charleston Conference on building an e-reader collection by Aisha Harvey, Nancy Gibbs, and Natalie Sommerville of Duke University Libraries. First and foremost, according to the librarians, the e-reader lending program is a team approach and affects every aspect of the way we build collections in libraries—access, selection, cataloging, ref, and circ. Are people interested in the Kindles or the content? They found it was both.”...
No Shelf Required, Nov. 12

Nook ColorNook Color review
Joshua Topolsky writes: “It’s hard to believe we’re already writing a review of the Nook Color, considering Barnes & Noble’s first foray into the e-reader world was revealed just over a year ago. The Nook Color is definitely a major step forward, boasting a completely revamped, Android-based OS, and a big push into the children’s book and periodical market (particularly full color magazines). Beyond book reading, the Nook Color potentially offers a tablet alternative that can (or will be able to) do much of what is possible on an iPad or Galaxy Tab.” Watch the video (4:29)...
Engadget, Nov. 16

What do you know about e-books?
Kathryn Craft writes: “This week the Blood-Red Pencil is launching a series of posts about e-books. What do you know about this emerging segment of the publishing market? Take this quiz to see if you’re up to speed.”...
The Blood-Red Pencil, Nov. 15

Cover of The Aquariums of Pyongyang: 10 Years in the North Korean Gulag, by Kang Chol-Hwan (2001), one of Bush's favoritesWhat was George W. Bush reading?
Carolyn Kellogg writes: “George W. Bush’s memoir Decision Points was published this week. Our reviewer Tim Rutten calls it ‘unexpectedly engrossing.’ Bush writes of the books that crossed his path during his eight years in office. There was, first and foremost, the Bible, which he says he read every morning. And there were a few others. Here are those that he mentions by name in Decision Points.”...
Los Angeles Times: Jacket Copy, Nov. 10

Bancroft Library keepsake: California As an Island, edited by Glen McLaughlin (2009)Collecting keepsakes
L. D. Mitchell writes: “One of the side benefits of membership in various bookish organizations is that it becomes relatively easy to amass, in a short period of time, all types of printed ephemera. Such organizations frequently promote and reward membership, for example, by publishing keepsakes, which are printed to commemorate these organizations’ special programs or events, significant anniversaries, and festive occasions. They can take the form of broadsheets, posters, or pamphlets.”...
The Private Library, Nov. 15

Sotheby's Mary Engleheart shown with copy of Birds of America to be auctioned December 7Rara avis, rari libri, rare man
Linda Hedrick writes: “John James Audubon, a Haitian-born man raised in France, had a vision, one that resulted in a monumental and important work—The Birds of America. Considered the world’s most expensive book, one of the 119 extant copies will be available to the highest bidder this December 7, at Sotheby’s auction. The last time a copy became available was at an auction at Christie’s in 2000. That copy went for $8.8 million, setting the record for an auctioned printed book.”...
Booktryst, Nov. 16

Actions & Answers

Michael Gorman on gaming in the library
Former ALA President Michael Gorman was quoted in a recent article on libraries reinventing themselves: “If you want to have game rooms and pingpong tables and God knows what—poker parties—fine, do it, but don’t pretend it has anything to do with libraries. The argument that all these young people would turn up to play video games and think, ‘Oh by the way, I must borrow that book by Dostoyevsky’—it seems ludicrous to me.” The remark has prompted comments in a number of blogs, among them Agnostic, Maybe; MG Farrelly; and Information.Games....
Los Angeles Times, Nov. 12; Agnostic, Maybe, Nov. 12–13; MG Farrelly, Nov. 12; Information.Games, Nov. 12

Cover of Partners for the FutureULC report on the future of libraries
On November 8, the Chicago-based Urban Libraries Council released the report Partners for the Future: Public Libraries and Local Governments Creating Sustainable Communities (ZIP file). The 33-page report explains how public libraries can work with municipal and county governments to make their communities more economically prosperous, environmentally sustainable, and socially equitable....
Chicago Libraries Examiner, Nov. 11

Google Book Settlement, le sequel
Philip Jones writes: “So, before the revised Google Settlement is passed, Hachette Livre and Google have cooked up their own settlement in France. On the surface the deal looks to have answered some of those troubling uncertainties about the former deal, with control of scanned book—past, present, and future—coming firmly under the control of Hachette Livre. Books that Hachette deems not suitable for scanning will be removed from Google services. This also applies to works already scanned by Google.”...
FutureBook, Nov. 17

Literacy may steal brain power from other functions
John Timmer writes: “The human brain, like those of mammals, contains many specialized regions. But literacy is only a few thousand years old, too little time for such a large evolutionary change. So, how did widespread literacy become possible? The authors of a paper released by Science November 11 suggest two possible explanations.”...
Ars Technica: Nobel Intent, Nov. 11; Science, Nov. 11

Cover of Keeping Pace 2010Online instruction grows unevenly
Online instruction continues to grow quickly overall, according to the latest snapshot of online education programs in grades K–12. But the shape and pace of this growth remains uneven throughout the United States, and two states—Delaware and New York—still don’t offer any opportunities for K–12 students to take classes online. That’s according to the 2010 edition of Keeping Pace with K-12 Online Learning (PDF file), an annual review published by Evergreen Education Group....
eSchool News, Nov. 16

Fading state school library conferences
Doug Johnson writes: “I received over 20 interesting comments explaining why librarians don’t attend their state conferences, in response to my post ‘Library Conferences: Fading Away.’ Scattered among the reasons for nonattendance were some heartfelt endorsements of this long-standing means of providing training, communications, collegiality, and inspiration. Are traditional state library conferences going the way of the eight-track tape? I’d suggest that school library associations ask themselves some important questions.”...
Blue Skunk Blog, Nov. 11

Cover of Digital and Media Literacy: A Plan of ActionDigital and media literacy action plan
The Aspen Institute and Knight Foundation have released Digital and Media Literacy: A Plan of Action (PDF file), the second in a series of white papers focused on implementing recommendations of the Knight Commission’s report, Informing Communities: Sustaining Democracy in the Digital Age (PDF file). The paper outlines steps that policymakers, educators, and community advocates can take to help Americans obtain digital and media literacy skills and thrive in the digital age. However, as Buffy Hamilton points out, the report leaves out school librarians....
KnightBlog, Nov. 10; The Unquiet Librarian, Nov. 11

Can using Twitter make you smarter?
David Zax writes: “To the dismay of more traditional professors, students have a new justification for pulling out smartphones in class: A semester-long study published November 12 in the Journal of Computer Assisted Learning found that, in a group of 125 students at a medium-sized public college in the Midwest, the 70 students who used Twitter to access information and complete class assignments earned GPAs a half-point higher than a non-tweeting control group.” At least one professor disputes the reason for the grade boost...
Gizmodo, Nov 12; Journal of Computer Assisted Learning, Nov. 12; Chronicle of Higher Education: Wired Campus, Nov. 12

Interview questions are a two-way street
Steven Bell writes: “If there’s one thing current and prospective academic librarians are always looking for, it’s advice about job interviews. One of the most important parts of the interview process are the questions. You already know to anticipate them and be as prepared as possible. For example, you know someone is going to ask (probably more than once), ‘Why do you want to work here?’ You should have a good message prepared that communicates your passion for the position in a sticky way—so what you have to say is remembered.”...
ACRLog, Nov. 16

Teens, image from DMLCentral“Bullying” has little resonance with teens
Danah Boyd writes: “The cultural logic underpinning bullying is far more complex than most adults realize. Technology is not radically changing what’s happening; it’s simply making it far more visible. If we want to combat bullying, we need to start by understanding the underlying dynamics. And we need to approach interventions with an evaluation-based mindset. No amount of legislation requiring education is going to do squat until we actually find intervention mechanisms that work. And that starts with understanding what’s happening.”...
DMLCentral, Nov. 15

Sarah hates filters
Sarah Houghton-Jan writes: “It’s no secret that I think internet filters are not only unethical and counter to everything librarians believe in, but that filters also don’t work for crap. And now the filters are finally fighting back [evil grin]. Some customers of FortiGuard, WebSense, and Barracuda (filtering products marketed to schools and libraries) are reporting that the internet filters are blocking the San Jose Public Library’s new website (check out the features here) and marking it as spyware, spam, and/or inappropriate. Why? No way to know and no ideas why.”...
Librarian in Black, Nov. 15–16

Bobbi L. Newman at a speaking engagement at the Computers in Libraries 2010 conferenceNine questions to ask before you accept a speaking gig
Bobbi L. Newman writes: “I had a discussion with a friend this weekend about what questions we ask when accepting speaking invitations, and it occurred to me that this is the sort of thing I should blog for two reasons—first, I have some advice to share, and second, I’m sure someone will have advice to offer me. Number 1: Do I want to speak? Speaking is time consuming and hard work, so you might prefer to put your time and energy elsewhere.”...
Librarian by Day, Nov. 14

Access, library exceptions named top WIPO priorities
The World Intellectual Property Organization closed its latest copyright meeting November 12 with a two-year plan to improve access for the print disabled and identify potential library exceptions in international treaty agreements. The Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights will devote several days of discussion at meetings in June and November 2011. The U.S. library community was well represented by the Library Copyright Alliance (of which ALA is a member), the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions, and Electronic Information for Libraries....
District Dispatch, Nov. 15

Babylonian Talmud copied in the 16th century in Yemen and acquired by the Columbia University Libraries in 1890Columbia launches Jewish studies library
The Columbia University Libraries in New York City have received a gift of $4 million to establish the Norman E. Alexander Library for Jewish Studies. The gift includes three new endowments: a Jewish Studies librarian, the General Jewish Studies Collection, and the Special Collections in Judaica. The new Norman E. Alexander Librarian for Jewish Studies is Michelle Chesner, who joined Columbia in May. The new library will build on Columbia’s strong tradition of rare book and archival Judaica resources....
Columbia University, Oct. 28

Cover of Marigold Garden by Kate GreenawayEmory acquires yellowback trove
The Manuscript, Archives, and Rare Book Library of Atlanta’s Emory University has acquired 4,000 19th-century paperbacks and yellowbacks (British literature with yellow-glazed illustrated covers sold at railway bookstalls) collected by author Chester W. Topp. The Topp Collection includes a number of children’s books by renowned author and illustrator Kate Greenaway. MARBL plans to digitize the collection, adding it to more than 1,200 yellowbacks it has already made available online....
Emory University, Nov. 15

The future of the research library
Wayne Bivens-Tatum writes: “How will we know what users 50 years from now will want from the collections we’re building now? That’s the sort of question that research libraries have to consider. Depending on how extensive patron-driven acquisition is, it seems to me like a good idea. Or there is a chance that the future will be the rather fanciful one conceived in this article, where libraries buy only the books patrons want and then give them to the patrons. The assumption is that Google Books and the HathiTrust will have most books digitized and preserved, and that everything else will be digitized and available at least as a license.”...
Academic Librarian, Nov. 12; Chronicle of Higher Education, Nov. 7; IUPUI ScholarWorks, July 22

By indirections, find directions out
Barbara Fister writes: “Having licensed materials behind a paywall creates headaches for student researchers. But what’s really discouraging is to think that by making them inaccessible to anyone who isn’t in the club, we are making the very idea of scholarship irrelevant except for school purposes. Open access is more than a convenience for scholars whose libraries can’t afford to buy or license everything they need. It’s the only way to consistently inject researched findings into public discourse about issues. And frankly, we all could use a little more of that.”...
Inside Higher Ed: Library Babel Fish, Nov. 15

Chess Schmidt, unshaven and shavedAmericans help rebuild Haiti’s libraries
Philip Kurata writes: “After an earthquake devastated Haiti in January, a student in South Carolina was so moved to help rebuild libraries in Haiti that he shaved his head, legs, and beard. Before shaving, Chess Schmidt, an LIS student at the University of South Carolina, vowed to fellow students that he would take the dramatic step if they contributed a total of $750 to help Haiti rebuild its libraries. After his fundraiser netted $950, the once-hairy Schmidt showed off his new look.”..., Nov. 15

Accidental research on overdue notices
Richard James writes: “The Selbyville (Del.) Public Library staff recently found out that due to a combination of staff and management turnover and other factors, they had not sent out traditional overdue notices to their patrons since early 2009—both email and snail mail. This has been remedied, but it was informative to see what impact this had and speculate about the role and usefulness of library overdues and fine notifications based on the data available.”...
Delaware Division of Libraries, Nov. 14

The Community Library: A success story
J. Michael Jeffers writes: “Several months ago, I exchanged emails with Colleen Daly, executive director of the Community Library in Ketchum, Idaho. I was taken by the fact that a library existed with absolutely no government support. I went to their site to find out more about who they are and what they offer to the community. Frankly, I was inspired both by the humble origins of the library and their continuing success. I asked Daly for permission to share their history.”...
ALA Editions blog, Nov. 16

Teens at Darien Library. Screen shot from documentaryDarien Library = The Great Good Place
Barbara Thomas writes: “Great good places are defined as third places; in contrast to home (first places) and work (second places), third places are the heart of the community. After months and months of filming at Darien (Conn.) Library and getting to know us and our members, documentary filmmaker Manny Perez aptly named his film about us ‘The Great Good Place’ (50:31).”...
Darien (Conn.) Library, Nov. 15; Vimeo, Nov. 10

Systems Librarian’s desk at the Advanced Technology Solar Telescope project, Tucson, ArizonaA view from your desk
Andy Woodworth writes: “Mostly inspired by the long-running The View from Your Window series on The Daily Dish and my own curiosity about the different types and styles of reference desk, I started a Tumblr blog called A View from Your Desk. I’m hoping it will give people a glance into libraries and offices from all over the world. It will allow librarians to check out other libraries, and it can show everyone what it looks like to be in our seats. People can submit their own photographs for inclusion.”...
Agnostic, Maybe, Nov. 9

CSLA readers' messenger bag: "Navigating the New"Gifts for library and book lovers
Wondering what gift to get your book-loving friends? The California School Library Association has some suggestions—more than 75 products, ranging from small to tall, fashion, furniture, guy stuff, and kid stuff. The site is one way CSLA is promoting the California Campaign for Strong School Libraries and the new Model School Library Standards. There’s more at their CafePress website....
Gift Guide for Library and Book Lovers

How to help student workers hate life a little less
Student worker Megan Schmidt writes: “I work at my university library and while I love my job, there are things I need to say. And dammit, I am tired of being the mild-mannered librarian, so it is full of bad language. 1) Don’t reshelve books you pull off the shelf. We really, really, really hate it when you guys do this. This comes back to bite us in the ass later, because when we do shelf-reading we’ll find that book that’s out of order and then have to fix it.”...
Awful in Love with You, Nov. 16

Autographs of Stephen Sondheim and Leonard Bernstein in a miniature volume titled West Side StoryTiny books collection at the Museum of Science and Industry
Chicago’s Museum of Science and Industry opened its doors in 1933 and is the largest science museum in the Western Hemisphere. Part of its Colleen Moore Fairy Castle exhibit is a collection of miniature books, many of them containing autographs by such celebrities as Stephen Sondheim and Leonard Bernstein (right), Edward Albee, William Randolph Hearst, and F. Scott Fitzgerald. Kate McGroarty, who won a contest to live at the museum for a month, discovered the collection, which is kept locked up because of its value....
Month at the Museum, Nov. 15; Associated Press, Nov. 16

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