|American Libraries Online
Court voids Alaska harmful-to-minors statute
The Federal District Court in Anchorage has permanently barred enforcement of an Alaska statute criminalizing the online posting of sexual imagery that is “harmful to minors,” stating that it threatened to reduce all speech on the internet “to only what is fit for children.” Chief U.S. District Judge Ralph Beistline held June 30 that Senate Bill 222, signed last year by Governor Sean Parnell, violates First Amendment rights of free speech and would have chilled free expression....
AL: Censorship Watch, July 1
Community-building cover girl comes forward
Beverly Goldberg writes: “I received a pleasant surprise about a week ago when ALA Publishing colleague Ben Segedin forwarded a voicemail to me from a librarian who had phoned to request a few copies of American Libraries’ May/June 2011 issue. It would have been routine except for one detail: The caller identified herself as Catherine Dooley, the heretofore unidentified woman gracing the cover.”...
AL: Inside Scoop, July 13
Does private management have a place in public libraries?
Jamie E. Helgren and Linda Hofschire write: “The survival of many public libraries has been threatened as their funding has dried up in recent years. City and county officials are casting about for a lifesaver, and some have snagged a promising catch in the form of private companies that take over the management of public libraries, triggering a heated debate in the library community. The Library Research Service picked up on this debate and developed a 60-Second Survey to gauge the library community’s thoughts on the topic.”...
American Libraries feature
Libraries and the future of electronic content delivery
Lisa Carlucci Thomas writes: “Michael Porter (right) draws on two decades of experience as a librarian, speaker, and writer to envision an organization that will take a leading role in charting the future of electronic content delivery for libraries, with expert information professionals and industry leaders at the helm. He created and is president of Library Renewal, ‘a new kind of nonprofit’ organization whose goal is to develop ‘a new electronic content access and distribution infrastructure.’”...
American Libraries feature
Newbery and Caldecott Medal acceptance speeches
Q. I wasn’t able to be at the Newbery/Caldecott Banquet at the ALA Annual Conference in New Orleans. Will the speeches be published somewhere? A. Yes, the Newbery Medal and Caldecott Medal acceptance speeches are published annually in two periodicals: in the Summer/Fall issue of ALA’s Children and Libraries: The Journal of the Association for Library Service to Children and the June/July issue of (non-ALA) Horn Book Magazine. Older speeches have been collected in regular book compilations....
AL: Ask the ALA Librarian, July 13
The lowdown on high-tech trends at Annual Conference
Lisa Carlucci Thomas writes: “Technology, innovation, and convergence were all on display inside the bustling 2011 ALA Annual Conference exhibit hall in New Orleans. Aisles of publishers with bright, appealing print-book displays and long lines of fans awaiting author signings gave way to technology pavilions with presentation seating and numerous demonstrations in progress. Conference attendees came seeking information about e-books, e-journals, digital collections, and new platforms and products for managing electronic content.”...
American Libraries feature
SKILLS Act reintroduced
The Strengthening Kids’ Interest in Learning and Libraries (SKILLS) Act (S. 1328), reintroduced by Senators Jack Reed (D-R.I.) and Thad Cochran (R-Miss.) on July 6, includes key provisions to support school libraries. ALA lobbied for inclusion of this language in the SKILLS Act to ensure that all students in the United States have access to effective and up-to-date school libraries....
District Dispatch, July 11
Apply for the 2012 class of Emerging Leaders
ALA is now accepting applications for the 2012 class of Emerging Leaders. The program is designed to enable library workers get on the fast track to ALA and professional leadership. Details on the program criteria, as well as a link to the application, can be found on the Emerging Leaders web page. The deadline to apply is August 1....
Human Resource Development and Recruitment, July 12
Cal Ripken is honorary chair of Library Card Sign-up Month
This September, baseball Hall of Famer and author Cal Ripken will encourage children to get the most important school supply of all: a library card. As the Honorary Chair of Library Card Sign-up Month (September), Cal Ripken has donated his image to print and audio public service announcements (PSAs). Sample media tools are now available to remind the public of all the resources available for free with a library card. Tools include a sample press release, newsletter article, proclamation, and PSA scripts....
Public Information Office, July 12
Nominating Committee seeks candidates
The ALA Nominating Committee will select two candidates to run for president-elect and no fewer than 50 candidates for the 33 at-large Council seats to be filled in the 2012 spring election. Members who wish to make nominations should submit the following information: nominee name, present position, institution, address, telephone, fax, and email address. All potential nominees must complete the Potential Candidate Biographical Form. Nominations and forms must be received no later than August 12....
Office of ALA Governance, July 12
ALA member satisfaction survey report
John Chrastka writes: “Beginning in August 2010, the Membership Development Office and the Office for Research and Statistics initiated an ongoing survey of member satisfaction. This report provides an analysis of the survey responses received between August 2010 and January 2011 and compares them to baseline data established in surveys conducted in 2007 and 2008.”...
ALA Membership Blog, July 6
Big-name authors join ALA Virtual Annual Conference
Two-time Pulitzer Prize-winner David McCullough and two-time National Book Award recipient Jean Thompson have signed on to be interviewed by Booklist editors Brad Hooper and Donna Seaman as part of ALA’s second Annual Virtual Conference, July 13–14. The ALA Virtual Conference offers one of the most cost-effective options of the year in library continuing education....
Conference Services, July 6
COA announces accreditation actions
The Committee on Accreditation announced accreditation actions taken at the 2011 ALA Annual Conference in New Orleans. Continued accreditation status was granted to MLIS programs at the University of Denver, the University of Kentucky, the University of Western Ontario, and the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Candidacy status was granted to an MLIS program at the University of Ottawa....
Office for Accreditation, July 11
#ala11 Photo Scavanger Hunt winners
As you might have heard, there was a Photo Scavenger Hunt running during the recent ALA Annual Conference. From the sights of our beautiful host city of New Orleans to some tucked-away corners of the conference itself, we asked attendees to look around and play along by snapping some photos. Our First Prize winner, Christine Getrost, collected 10,600 points....
ALA Membership Blog, July 11
Spreading the library word around the world
Latvia and Barbados are the latest nations to join the Campaign for the World’s Libraries. The 10-year-old public-awareness campaign, in which ALA and the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions work together, is designed to showcase the unique and vital roles that public, school, academic, and special libraries play worldwide and to speak loudly and clearly about the value of libraries and librarians in the 21st century....
AL: Global Reach, July 13
Library management tips for busy librarians
Library Management Tips That Work, published by ALA Editions, tackles the details of day-to-day management, the hard-to-categorize things that can slip through the cracks of other handbooks. Edited by Carol Smallwood, this eclectic guide addresses dozens of such issues facing library managers, such as how to create a job manual and keep staff accountable, keeping your library board in the loop, and using numbers to make your case....
ALA Editions, July 7
Working in the virtual stacks
Thanks in part to technology, the boundaries of library positions are dissolving. It is no longer practical to discuss the profession in terms of traditional library types, and the relationship between librarians and technology is stronger than ever. In Working in the Virtual Stacks: The New Library and Information Science, published by ALA Editions, veteran author Laura Townsend Kane interviews dozens of practicing librarians who are highly involved with technology as part of their day-to-day jobs....
ALA Editions, July 12
Featured review: Business
Mitnick, Kevin, with William L. Simon. Ghost in the Wires: My Adventures As the World’s Most Wanted Hacker. Aug. 2011. 384p. Little, Brown, hardcover (978-0-316-03770-9).
Mitnick was at one time the most wanted computer hacker in the country, perhaps the world. It was claimed that he could launch U.S. nuclear missiles simply by whistling into a phone. This was, of course, utter fabrication. In reality he was just a kid with a powerful curiosity and an innate knack for “social engineering” (or conning individuals into giving up deep secrets). Although he made free, untraceable phone calls at will, hacked his way into almost every major software company, and stole vast amounts of proprietary code, he never made monetary gain on any of it....
Top 10 business books of 2011
Brad Hooper writes: “The common question asked at foreign customs is, ‘Are you visiting our country for business or pleasure?’ Enter these outstanding business titles of the past year, all reviewed in Booklist, and the answer to that question is, ‘Both.’”...
@ Visit Booklist Online for other reviews and much more....
Early bird registration for AASL National Conference
AASL encourages members planning to register for the AASL 15th National Conference and Exhibition to do so before the August 4 early bird registration deadline. On August 5, registration rates will be raised $50 and, after September 29, AASL members can expect to pay $100 more for registration. The conference will be held October 27–30 in Minneapolis. The conference will feature more than 100 concurrent sessions designed to help attendees elevate both themselves as leaders and their library programs....
AASL, July 12
Vision Tour highlights
This video (10:44) showcases the highlights of AASL President Nancy Everhart’s (right) Vision Tour of outstanding school libraries across the United States during the 2010–2011 school year. The libraries on the tour were selected by AASL affiliate organizations as examples in their state of school libraries that are dedicated to empowering every student with the skills needed to be a Learner4Life....
YouTube, June 25
Turning the Page a second time
Registration has opened for the August 8–September 12 session of “Turning the Page 2.0,” a free online advocacy training program, developed and presented by PLA. The program will be offered three additional times through 2012. The full schedule with registration dates is available online....
PLA, July 11
E-readers and your library
For many teens, reading isn’t confined to the printed page; more devices support a variety of applications and other access mechanisms for connecting teens with a range of content. Join Wendy Stephens as she discusses the latest in e-readers in YALSA’s July 14 webinar. This webinar will address strategies for librarians providing access to both free and subscription-based texts and technical and logistical support for teens reading on the screen....
YALSA, July 5
Webinars for middle managers
LLAMA is offering a lineup of three new interactive webinars designed to meet the needs of middle managers. Each of the 90-minute programs will feature library consultant Julie Todaro. The webinars will be held July 14, August 3, and August 14. LLAMA sections are also hosting some upcoming webinars. Register online....
LLAMA, July 12
Readers’ advisory webinar with Nancy Pearl
At 1 p.m. Central Time on July 19, PLA will host a webinar with Nancy Pearl, “Dive into a Good Book: Great Summer Reads to Recommend to Your Patrons.” The webinar will benefit library staff specializing in readers’ advisory and will feature a “read alike” section as well as a downloadable handout of the highlighted books. Register by July 15....
PLA, July 7
Deanna Marcum featured in ALCTS webinar
ALCTS will present a free webinar the afternoon of August 1. “Aiming for a Robust Metadata Infrastructure for the Future” will feature Library of Congress Associate Librarian for Library Services Deanna Marcum and LC Director for Acquisitions and Bibliographic Control Beacher Wiggins. Marcum will give her reactions to reviewing and accepting the recommendations of the U.S. RDA Test Coordinating Committee, and Wiggins will describe the test, findings, and analyses that led to the recommendation to implement RDA no sooner than January 2013. Advance registration is required....
ALCTS, July 7
RUSA online learning
There’s lots of exciting stuff happening with RUSA Online Learning opportunities in the coming months. Registration for the course “Introduction to Spatial Literacy and Online Mapping,” to be held July 18–August 5, ends on July 14. A course on equitable access for persons with disabilities and a webinar on screencasting are two new offerings....
RUSABlog, July 13
Phyllis Dain Library History Award
The Library History Round Table has named Susan Reynolds the winner of its 2011 Susan Dain Library History Award for her dissertation, “The Establishment of the Library of the Supreme Court of Victoria, 1851–1884: Antecedents, Foundation, and Legacy.” Reynolds graduated from the Department of Library and Information Studies of Charles Sturt University of Australia in 2008 and is currently a lecturer at the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology....
Library History Round Table, June 28
Justin Winsor Prize
The Library History Round Table has named Cody White the winner of the 2011 Justin Winsor Prize for his essay “Rising from the Ashes: Lessons Learned from the Impact of Proposition 13 on Public Libraries in California.” The $100 award is presented annually to the author of an outstanding essay embodying original historical research on a significant subject of library history....
Library History Round Table, June 28
Jesse H. Shera awards
The Library Research Round Table has chosen the 2011 winners of its Jesse H. Shera Award for Distinguished Published Research and the Jesse H. Shera Award for the Support of Dissertation Research. M. Cristina Pattuelli won the research award for her article, “Modeling a Domain Ontology for Cultural Heritage,” Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology 62 (February 2011): 314–342. Amy VanScoy won the dissertation award for “Exploring the Meaning of Reference Work for Librarians in Academic Research Libraries.”...
Library Research Round Table, June 28
ALA receives grant to support Great Stories Club
The ALA Public Programs Office and YALSA have announced that the Great Stories Club, a reading and discussion program for at-risk teens, was selected for an Access to Artistic Excellence grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. The NEA grant will facilitate author visits to select libraries that are participating in the current Great Stories Club program, which focuses on the theme “Second Chances.”...
Public Programs Office, July 5
2011 Diversity Research Grants
The Office for Diversity has awarded Diversity Research Grants of $2,000 for original research and $500 travel grants to Clara M. Chu (University of North Carolina at Greensboro), Daniella Smith (University of North Texas), and Jian-zhong Zhou (California State University, Sacramento). Recipients are expected to conduct their research over the course of the year and compile the results into a program for the 2012 ALA Annual Conference in Anaheim, California....
Office for Diversity, July 12
Librarian swimmer supports Spectrum again
Miriam Tuliao (right), assistant director of central collection development at the New York Public Library, announced that she will participate in the United States Masters Swimming Two-Mile Cable Open Water National Championship in support of the Spectrum Presidential Initiative. The event will be held August 13 at Lake Placid, New York. Also, APALA and Reforma members in northern California held a fundraiser recently at the Redwood City Public Library that contributed more than $1,000 to Spectrum....
Spectrum Initiative, July 5, 12
2011 Joey Rodger Leadership Award
The Urban Libraries Council presented Tony Tallent (right), director of literacy and learning at the Richland County (S.C.) Public Library, with the 2011 Joey Rodger Leadership Award at its annual membership meeting June 25 in New Orleans. Tallent will utilize the leadership award to develop a brand personality for the library, strengthen its strategies and goals, clarify its vision, and further develop activities that demonstrate the public library as a living, breathing, changing mirror of the community mind....
Urban Libraries Council, July 8
2011 Carnegie and Greenaway Medal winners
The Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals has awarded its 2011 Carnegie Medal to Patrick Ness for his novel Monsters of Men. The third in Ness’s Chaos Walking trilogy, the novel compellingly charts the epic power struggles between the inhabitants of a world where all thoughts are audible. Ness used his June 23 acceptance speech to launch a scorching attack on the U.K. government’s policy on libraries. Grahame Baker-Smith won the 2011 CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal with his father-and-son-inspired generational tale, FArTHER....
Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals, June 23; The Guardian (U.K.), June 23
Campbell and Sturgeon awards
Irish author Ian McDonald’s The Dervish House won the John W. Campbell Award for the best science-fiction novel of the year and Geoffrey A. Landis’s “The Sultan of the Clouds” won the Theodore Sturgeon Award for the best short SF of the year in a July 8 ceremony at the University of Kansas. The awards are presented by the Center for the Study of Science Fiction during the Campbell Conference, a four-day event held annually at the University of Kansas....
University of Kansas, July 8
2011 Locus Awards
Winners of the 2011 Locus Awards, literary awards established in 1971 and presented to winners of Locus magazine’s annual readers’ poll, were announced during the Science Fiction Awards Weekend in Seattle, June 24–26. Connie Willis’s Blackout and All Clear won for Best Science Fiction Novel, and China Miéville’s Kraken won for Best Fantasy Novel....
Locus Online, June 25
2011 Thriller Awards
The International Thriller Writers announced the winners of the 2011 Thriller Awards during a gala banquet July 9 at the Grand Hyatt in New York City. John Sandford’s Bad Blood was voted the Best Hard Cover Novel, J. T. Ellison’s The Cold Room won for Best Paperback Original Novel, and Best First Novel went to Chevy Stevens for Still Missing....
The Big Thrill, July 9
Storytelling book wins award
Janice M. Del Negro, assistant professor at Dominican University GSLIS, received a 2011 Storytelling World Resource Award for a book that she cowrote with Ellin Greene, Storytelling: Art and Technique, 4th edition. The book was honored in the Special Storytelling Resources category. The awards were featured in the 2011 April/May issue of Storytelling Magazine / Storytelling World....
Dominican University, June 24
Spear’s Book Awards
The third annual Spear’s Book Awards were announced in London on June 27. Winning titles were chosen by authors and judges from both the literature and finance worlds. The winners included Michael Perino for his book The Hellhound of Wall Street: How Ferdinand Pecora’s Investigation of the Great Crash Forever Changed American Finance (Penguin) and Donald Sturrock for Storyteller: The Life of Roald Dahl (Simon and Schuster)....
Spear’s Wealth Management Survey, June 29
2011 Miles Franklin Literary Award
Australia’s most prestigious literary prize, the Miles Franklin Literary Award, was presented to Kim Scott June 22 for his novel That Deadman Dance (Picador), a story about relations between the Aborigines and the first European settlers along the south coast of Western Australia. The annual award of $50,000 ($53,162 U.S.) is presented to the novel of the year that is of the highest literary merit and “presents Australian life in any of its phases.”...
Miles Franklin Literary Award, June 22
Prime Minister’s Literary Awards 2011
The 4th annual Prime Minister’s Literary Awards, celebrating excellence in Australian literature, were announced July 8 by Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard. Melbourne author Cath Crowley won the $80,000 ($85,111 U.S.) prize for young adult fiction for her book Graffiti Moon, which is described as an intense and exhilarating 24 hours in the lives of four teenagers on the verge of adulthood. Traitor, a novel about Gallipoli by first-time author and former soldier Stephen Daisley, won in the fiction category....
Melbourne (Vict.) Herald Sun, July 8
Dolman Travel Book of 2011
The Authors’ Club named Rachel Polonsky’s Molotov’s Magic Lantern: Uncovering Russia’s Secret History (Faber) the Dolman Travel Book of the Year for 2011. Polonsky was a Cambridge fellow in Russian literature before moving to Moscow in the mid-1990s. In her apartment block near the Kremlin, she discovered papers belonging to a former Soviet foreign minister and an old-fashioned slide projector. These finds prompted her to write the book, a travelogue through Russia’s recent history....
Words Worth Reading, July 9
2011 Wales Book of the Year
Cloud Road: A Journey through the Inca Heartland by John Harrison has been named the 2011 Wales Book of the Year by Literature Wales. The author was presented with £10,000 ($15,900 U.S.) at a July 7 ceremony. Harrison journeyed for five months through the Inca heartland, walking alone into remote villages where he was the first gringo the inhabitants had ever seen, and where life continues as if Columbus had never sailed....
Cardiff (U.K.) Western Mail, July 7
2011 Branford Boase Award
Jason Wallace has won the 2011 Branford Boase Award, honoring the most outstanding work of fiction for children by a first-time novelist, for Out of Shadows, a children’s novel set in 1980s Zimbabwe. The war is over, independence has been won, and Robert Mugabe has come to power, but Robert Jacklin soon learns that for some of his classmates, the sound of guns is still loud. The author and his editor, Charlie Sheppard, were presented with a £1,000 ($1,590 U.S.) check for their work on the novel....
Branford Boase Award, July 7
2011 Caine Prize for African Writing
Zimbabwean author Elizabeth Tshele (right), writing under the pen name NoViolet Bulawayo, has won the 2011 Caine Prize for African Writing for her short story “Hitting Budapest” (PDF file), published in the Boston Review 35, no. 6 (Nov./Dec. 2010). She was announced the winner July 11 at a special ceremony at the Bodleian Library in Oxford, England. The Caine Prize, now in its 12th year, is Africa’s leading literary award and comes with a £10,000 ($15,865 U.S.) prize....
Africa Book Club, July 11; Caine Prize, July 11
2011 Desmond Elliott Prize
Debut novelist Anjali Joseph has been named the winner of the 2011 Desmond Elliott Prize for her work Saraswati Park.The critically acclaimed novel, set in the suburbs of Mumbai, is about a married couple and their teenage nephew who comes to live with them. Now in its fourth year, the £10,000 ($15,900 U.S.) prize is awarded by the Society of Authors to the writer of the best debut novel....
BBC News, June 23
Mao’s Great Famine wins Samuel Johnson Prize
Dutch historian Frank Dikötter’s book about China’s disastrous Great Leap Forward policy has won the £20,000 ($31,800 U.S.) BBC Samuel Johnson Prize for Nonfiction. Chair of the judges Ben Macintyre praised Mao’s Great Famine: The History of China’s Most Devastating Catastrophe, 1958–1962 (Walker, 2010) as an “epic record of human folly,” adding that it was “essential reading for anyone seeking to understand the history of the 20th century.”...
BBC News, July 6
CLPE Poetry Award 2011
The Centre for Literacy in Primary Education announced July 5 that the winner of its Poetry Award for 2011 is Philip Gross for Off Road to Everywhere, illustrated by Jonathan Gross (Salt Publishing). The award, sponsored by Travelling Books, honors excellence in poetry written for children. Gross is a professor of creative writing at the University of Glamorgan in Wales....
Poetry Book Society, July 6
Fire destroys Camden library
A weekend fire that destroyed the Public Library of Camden (Ark.) and Ouachita County is under investigation as to the cause of the blaze. The fire, reported at 2:30 a.m. on July 3, started in the back office portion of the building and caused the stucco roof to collapse on the materials below. The building will be a total loss according to fire officials, but some books may be salvageable. Firefighters were able to remove roughly 75% of the genealogy room and special collections. The Central Arkansas Library System in Little Rock is donating all fines it collects July 11–17 to library recovery efforts....
KATV, Little Rock, July 5; Arkansas Online, July 3; KTHV, Little Rock, July 9
Are school librarians expendable?
In New York City, education officials say that after several years in a row of cutting costs, freezing wages, and eliminating extracurricular activities, they may have no choice but to turn to librarians. Do superintendents and principals see librarians as more expendable than other school employees? Jessamyn West, Ze’ev Wurman, Carol Simpson, C. Kent McGuire, Gwyneth A. Jones, and Francine Prose contribute to the discussion....
New York Times, June 27
Queens Library cuts restored
More than 400 Queens (N.Y.) Library employees whose jobs were threatened by steep budget cuts saw their pink slips disappear June 29. The fiscal year 2012 city budget, approved by the City Council, restored $23 million of funding to the library, allowing it to rescind all of the layoff notices sent out in May. Hundreds of employees would have lost their jobs and a dozen branches could have been forced to close their doors for good....
New York Daily News, June 30
“Bugget cuts” girl still has words for Mayor Bloomberg
Rita Meade, the Brooklyn Public Library children’s librarian behind the Screwy Decimal blog who originally posted about one spunky little girl’s vaguely threatening postcards to Mayor Bloomberg (an effort to scare him into keeping New York Public Library budgets intact), has followed up with the girl after budgets were, happily, largely restored to the libraries. She found that her sass is still intact....
Village Voice: Runnin’ Scared, June 22, 29, July 9; Screwy Decimal, June 16
California library privacy bill goes to governor
The California State Legislature has approved Senate Bill 445 by State Sen. Joe Simitian (D-Palo Alto) to provide 21st-century privacy protections for California library patrons. It was sent to Gov. Jerry Brown July 7 for signing. Existing law provides limited privacy protection for “registration and circulation” records, but is largely silent on privacy protection for the many other online interactions a patron might have at a public library. The bill makes a small but necessary change in state law to ensure that all patron records are protected equally....
California Library Association, July 6
Codex Calixtinus stolen from Santiago de Compostela cathedral
In what is being called the robbery of the century, a priceless 12th-century manuscript has been stolen from the cathedral at Santiago de Compostela. The Codex Calixtinus, a traveler’s guide to the famous pilgrimage road to Santiago de Compostela in northern Spain, was found missing from the cathedral’s archives July 5. El Correo Gallego reports that police are investigating a set of footprints found inside the archive, and are not ruling out the involvement of current or former cathedral staff. Most experts agree that the manuscript would be difficult to sell because it is so recognizable....
Medievalists.net, July 7; Santiago El Correo Gallego, July 11–13; El País (Madrid), July 9; Time, July 11
Stolen rare books returned to University of Hawaii
Some 218 rare books are back in Hamilton Library at the University of Hawaii at Manoa, thanks to a California rare book collector. Associate Librarian Alan Grosenheider (right) said discovery of the theft began when a former student, Tim Perry, contacted collector Michael Hollander of Hollander Rare Books in San Rafael, California, offering to sell a large number of rare books. The volumes are from the mid-1800s to early 20th century and include books on Pacific and Asian exploration. Police raided Perry’s Waikiki apartment and recovered the books....
Honolulu Star-Advertiser, July 2
Manuscript thieves nabbed in Baltimore
Presidential historian Barry H. Landau (left) claims one of the largest collections of Oval Office memorabilia outside museums and presidential libraries. Police say he tried to expand that collection by pilfering dozens of rare documents from the Maryland Historical Society on July 9. Landau, whose connections reportedly bridge the Washington, New York, and Hollywood elite, is being held without bail. The artifacts he and Jason Savedoff tried to take at the society’s archives include documents signed by Abraham Lincoln, presidential inaugural ball invitations and programs, a commemoration of the Statue of Liberty, and a commemoration of the Washington Monument....
Baltimore Sun, July 12
Court overturns gay librarian’s suspension
A Manhattan judge threw out June 29 an arbitrator’s ruling that suspended an openly gay high school librarian for conduct the judge said would have gone unpunished if committed by a heterosexual woman. After finding that Christopher Asch had engaged in nonsexual but inappropriate touching of students, a hearing officer in June 2010 suspended the Stuyvesant High School librarian for six months without pay and ordered him to attend counseling on teacher-student physical boundaries. But Acting Supreme Court Justice Manuel J. Mendez ruled that suspending Asch was “clearly disproportionate” and violated state antidiscrimination laws....
Miami Daily Business Review, July 5
First Folios on exhibit at the Folger
One copy of Shakespeare’s First Folio is always on view at the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, D.C. (and on its website), but its current exhibition, “Fame, Fortune and Theft: The Shakespeare First Folio,” has another 10 Folios from the library’s vaults (along with one on loan from a private collector). Curated by Anthony James West and Owen Williams, the exhibition is a survey of that book’s material life over nearly four centuries....
New York Times, July 7
Employees worked to keep Minot Public Library dry
Chris Bieri writes: “Jerry Kaup is used to spending his days surrounded by books. Recently, the director of the Minot (N.Dak.) Public Library has spent his days surrounded by water. When the library began to flood on June 27, Kaup and his employees were prepared. The National Guard had already built a dike around the library and volunteers moved the building’s contents up to the second floor. But the battle to move water out of the building has been an around-the-clock affair.”...
Minot (N.Dak.) Daily News, June 27
Super Diaper Baby removed for language
Tammy Harris has a 6-year-old son at Brown Elementary School in Channelview, Texas, and in 2010 she got a call from his teacher. He was suspended for one day allegedly for calling another student a “poo poo head,” a phrase he later read in a school library book by Dav Pilkey, The Adventures of Super Diaper Baby. Harris felt the book shouldn’t be in the library if her son could get suspended for using the same language it contains, and she won her appeal to have the book removed....
KTRK, Houston, May 19, July 13
Tornado-damaged Alabama libraries get help
About a dozen public and school libraries around Alabama were hit by the April 27 storms with varying degrees of damage. Some, like Birmingham’s Pratt City branch, had their buildings wrecked but were able to save many of their books. Others, such as the Pell City Public Library, experienced lesser damage and have reopened. To help damaged public and school libraries rebuild, the Alabama Humanities Foundation has gotten a $30,000 federal emergency grant to provide free books. Project Turn the Page will focus on Southern and Alabama history and fiction....
Birmingham (Ala.) News, July 5
One librarian’s mission: Locate U.S. flags on the moon
Anne Platoff, web services librarian at the University of California, Santa Barbara’s Davidson Library, is on a mission to find out what happened to the American flags that astronauts planted on the moon during the six lunar landings. Her research pinpointed four of them, including the one from Apollo 17, the final lunar mission. Platoff, a longtime vexillologist, said, “For me, the flag on the moon is an excellent example of something that seems very, very simple, but once you really start thinking about it, you realize is very complex.”...
Time: NewsFeed, July 7; Santa Barbara (Calif.) Independent, July 8
How to borrow books from a closed library branch
At San Jose (Calif.) Public Library’s Seven Trees branch, books are coming and going, even though the building is closed. One of the system’s four new or soon-to-be-finished branches, Seven Trees was completed last fall. It has new shelves and a technology center, but no staff to run it until the financially pressed city can find a way to pay salaries. The building also includes a first-floor community center that opened in October and attracts a steady stream of would-be library patrons. And community center workers are redirecting them to a small corner room under a sign that says, “Friends Book Sale.”...
San Francisco Bay Citizen, July 9
St. Paul library clerk sentenced for thefts
A St. Paul (Minn.) Public Library worker charged with stealing 1,400 books and movies was sentenced July 6 to 30 days in jail and ordered to perform 200 hours of community service. Amanda Marie Cortright pleaded guilty April 25 to receiving stolen property. She created four fake accounts and checked out materials under those made-up names. She also checked out items in her own name and improperly marked them as missing or deleted in the library inventory system....
St. Paul (Minn.) Pioneer Press, July 8
Rare collection in Pakistan in fragile condition
Many of the rare books in the Lahore Museum’s reference library in Pakistan are crumbling. Forty percent of the 35,000 books in the library are 50 years old or more. The only steps taken to preserve them are fumigation, every five years, and the taping and lamination of some old books. In 2008, air conditioners were installed in the library, but these are often off because of power outages. Library staff are currently working on digitizing the collection, a project which began in 2009, but it will take another two years to finish....
Express Tribune (Karachi), July 8
Go back to the Top
Google+ first impression
Andy Woodworth writes: “In writing this, I have to admit that I was a bit hesitant to say that I like Google+. After really liking Google Wave, getting people invited to the Beta, and then having it plummet out of sight, I was not eager to endorse another large-scale social effort by Google. I really like it but with one major caveat: It depends entirely on who will stay after the new luster wears off. However, Google has taken some interesting steps in creating a social sharing site. Here is a quick tour.” (Some professors are already considering it for classroom use.)...
Agnostic, Maybe, June 30; Chronicle of Higher Education: Wired Campus, July 8
How to get started with Google+
Kristi Hines writes: “If you haven’t gotten your invite just yet, you can learn more about Google+ in the following quick-look video (1:48), and by visiting the Google+ project overview, searchable details, and discussion pages. If you’re one of the lucky ones, you received an invite for Google+ during its limited field trial. While the invite messages varied, the commonality is the brick-red Learn more about Google+ button.” Simon Laustsen created a Google+ cheat sheet....
Social Media Examiner, July 5; YouTube, June 26; Centered Librarian, July 13
How to make a Google+ desktop app
Christina Warren writes: “As Google+ adoption continues to soar, one little annoyance is thwarting Google+ bliss: Dealing with other Google accounts. Google+ requires a Google Profile—and right now, Google Apps users don’t have access to a Google Profile. There is a solution: Create a Google+ desktop app.”...
Mashable, July 12
Google+ has its minuses
Jessica Dolcourt writes: “The fledgling social network is doing much right, like hosting interactive videoconferencing hangouts, considering privacy measures (even if belatedly), and offering the ability to edit posts. However, some decisions and omissions leave us a little cold. While we don’t expect absolute perfection in a first-generation Google product, a variety of us editors using Google+ have pinpointed some flaws and missing links over the last few weeks. We have aggregated our strongest complaints here.”...
CNET News: Webware, July 11; CNET News: Privacy Inc., June 29, July 1; CNET News: DeepTech, July 6
How to move Facebook photos to Picasa
Robin Wauters writes: “There’s more than one way to easily transfer your Facebook photos and albums to Google’s Picasa service (which will apparently be renamed Google Photos), but I would like to highlight one that launched recently. The aptly named Move2Picasa.com website lets you connect to your Facebook account, after which all your Facebook photos and albums will automatically be migrated over to Google’s Picasa service, sans captions and comments. One caveat: It’s all or nothing—you can’t migrate specific photos or albums at this point.”...
TechCrunch, July 6
An app for organizing Facebook friends
Sharing on Facebook can get complicated if you only want to do so with college friends, colleagues, or golf buddies. You have to manually sort potentially hundreds of people into separate groups. Katango, a free iPhone application introduced July 12, intends to alleviate the hassle by automatically organizing Facebook friends. In theory, its technology will detect who is a family member, who attended the same high school, or who lives in the same city and place them in the relevant group....
New York Times: Bits, July 12
Top 10 must-have apps for the iPhone
Bob Tedeschi writes: “I’m always surprised when I come across people who have yet to fill their iPhone with apps. The most often cited excuse? Not enough time to sift through 300,000 apps to find the good ones. True, it can be a slog. (But that’s what I do for you every week.) In this column, I’ve compiled 10 must-have apps that will save you time, make your life easier, and make you smile.”...
New York Times, Nov. 10, 2010
The 100 best Android apps
Here you will find the best 100 Android applications for all your needs. MakeUseOf has taken the effort to categorize the apps and picked only those the editors believe to be the best ones and that will most likely be useful. Categories include automation, communication, reading, music, social networking, productivity, system utilities, and web and news....
Usability lessons from a first-time computer user
Klint Finley writes: “Firefox user experience designer Jenny Boriss wrote about an experience she had recently conducting usability testing with a man who had never used a computer before. Boriss gave the man, whom she refers to as Joe, a seemingly simple task: Use a web browser to find a local restaurant. The only browser Joe was able to use to find anything with was Chrome, which had a link to Yelp–San Francisco on its start tab. Although he found the Help option in Firefox (above), Joe didn’t actually find it helpful.”...
ReadWrite Hack, July 7; Boriss’ Blog, July 6
Three skills that enable remote work success
Darrell Etherington writes: “When you’re evaluating potential hires for a remote work position, or assessing whether or not an existing office-based team member can make the jump to working from home, what skills do you hold most important? What makes someone good at any given position normally doesn’t necessarily make them best suited for a remote work environment. Here are the skills that, irrespective of a specific industry, provide the best ground upon which to build remote work success. It’s a short list, and obviously the more of these a candidate has, the better.”...
GigaOm, June 20
In their definitive new Interlibrary Loan Practices Handbook, editors Cherié Weible and Karen Janke clearly explain the complexities of getting materials from outside the library for patrons. This collection presents a complete view of the interlibrary loan (ILL) process, with contributions from all areas of the technical services community. NEW! From ALA Editions.
Great Libraries of the World
José Vasconcelos Library, Mexico City, Mexico. Named after early 20th-century Mexican philosopher and politician José Vasconcelos, this public library designed by Alberto Kalach was a pet project of President Vicente Fox, who dedicated it in 2006. Built primarily of glass and metal and surrounded by botanical gardens that buffer it from urban noise, the library houses half a million books, 750 computers, a children’s room, a multimedia laboratory, and a modern facility for the visually impaired. Unfortunately, construction defects required it to be shut down for remodeling in 2007–2008. The library features several sculptures by Mexican artists, the most striking of which is Gabriel Orozco’s Ballena, a painted gray whale skeleton placed prominently in the central corridor.
Public Library, Universidad Michoacana de San Nicolás de Hidalgo, Morelia, Mexico. This Baroque building, built in the Tuscan style in 1660, was originally a cathedral attached to the Palacio Clavijero, a Jesuit college. It served a variety of functions over the years until 1930 when it became a joint-use library. It contains collections from the Franciscan Convent of San Buenaventura, the papers of 19th-century journalist and writer Mariano de Jesús Torres, and a collection of 18th-century Jesuit manuscripts.
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 later this year by ALA Editions.
Editor and Publisher, American Libraries, American Library Association, Chicago. Publishing professional to provide strategic direction in the fulfillment of editorial, production, marketing, and advertising functions for a suite of print and digital media that currently includes the member magazine, American Libraries, AL Direct, the American Libraries website, AL Focus (videos and photo galleries), and emerging digital content. The Editor and Publisher develops and maintains a strategic plan to align the publications with current trends and keep them competitive, maintains relevance and quality of editorial content, ensures timely distribution, reinforces reader satisfaction and member dedication, and maximizes advertising revenue through collaboration with marketing and ad sales....
Digital Library of the Week
Historic Recipe File of the Milwaukee Public Library. From the 1960s through the 1980s, MPL librarians clipped recipes from the city’s two newspapers. Filed on index cards, they became a valuable database for reference librarians answering calls from the public. Those recipe cards have now become digital files in the library’s Historic Recipe File. Librarians Rebecca Desch and Rose Fortier decided that the long-forgotten-about recipe cards would make a great digital reference collection. To date, 530 recipe cards have been scanned into the database with the help of University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee student volunteers and are organized alphabetically by name, but are also searchable by keywords. Recipes are also searchable by such categories as desserts and appetizers. The collection was released on July 1 to coincide with National Culinary Arts Month. The website features a different recipe every day, often focusing on local delicacies like Moose Stroganoff and Wildburgers (above).
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.
“Our library is corrupted by the far-left ALA. While local taxpayers pick up the biggest tab for America’s libraries, most librarians are little more than unionized pawns for the social-activist bosses of the American Library Association. . . . ALA controls 62,000 members and, through its czarist accreditation program of many libraries, largely dictates what books are available for the most impressionable members of U.S. society, our children. For adults who utilize city and county libraries, ALA likewise exercises great influence over what may be read (and, in the Digital Audio/Video Age, what may be listened to and watched). So much for ALA’s love of ‘individual freedom’ and ‘intellectual honesty.’”
—Mike Thompson, past chairman of the Florida Conservative Union, in an editorial rant about plans to build a new Fernandina Beach branch for the Nassau County (Fla.) Public Library System, “Save Our Libraries, Fire the Librarians,” Fernandina Beach (Fla.) News-Leader, June 27.
“The bodies of dead public programs and eviscerated social services litter the American landscape like casualties of a brutal war. It seems, at times, as though the Great Recession is systematically wiping out institutions that were generations in the making. . . . The Great Recession has changed life as we know it in so many ways. We can’t allow it to kill our libraries.”
—Editorial, “The Sound of Libraries Suffocating,” Santa Maria (Calif.) Times, July 5.
American Libraries news stories, blog posts, tweets, and videos, at:
San Diego Comic-Con, San Diego Convention Center.
Library Day in the Life, Round 7.
Handheld Librarian V, online conference.
Pacific Northwest Library Association, Annual Conference, Doubletree Hotel Downtown, Spokane, Washington.
International Association of School Librarianship, Annual Conference, University of West Indies, Kingston, Jamaica. “School Libraries: Empowering the 21st Century Learner.”
Digital Preservation: What’s Now, What’s Next, online conference presented by Amigos Library Services.
International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions, 77th World Library and Information Congress, Puerto Rico Convention Centre, San Juan, Puerto Rico.
Society of American Archivists, Annual Meeting, Hyatt Regency, Chicago. “Archives 360°.”
Australian Library and Information Association, National Library and Information Technicians Conference, Pan Pacific Hotel, Perth, Western Australia. “Back to Basics.”
Reforma National Conference IV, Westin Denver Downtown Hotel. “Juntos in the Mile High City.”
KidLitCon, Hotel Monaco, Seattle.
Interlending and Document Supply Conference, Spertus Institute for Jewish Studies, Chicago. Sponsored by the IFLA Section on Document Delivery and Resource Sharing. “Resource Sharing in the Digital Age.”
National Book Festival, National Mall, Washington, D.C.
Arkansas Library Association, Annual Conference, Peabody Hotel, Little Rock. “The Joy of Libraries.”
Second Virtual Summit on Ebooks, online conference presented by Library Journal and School Library Journal. “Ebooks: The New Normal.”
Library 2.011 online conference, a global conversation on the current and future state of libraries. The School of Library and Information Science at San Jose (Calif.) State University is the founding conference sponsor.
Savannah Children’s Book Festival, presented by Live Oak Public Libraries, Forsyth Park, Savannah, Georgia.
Repositories in Science and Technology, a workshop cosponsored by CENDI (Federal Scientific and Technical Information Managers) and the National Federation of Advanced Information Services. Hosted by the Federal Library and Information Center Committee at the Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.
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