|American Libraries Online
ALA asks Random House to reconsider
ALA has called on publisher Random House to reconsider its decision to raise the price of ebooks to the library market starting March 1. ALA President Molly Raphael issued a statement March 2 that said: “While I appreciate Random House’s engagement with libraries and its commitment to perpetual access, I am deeply disappointed in the severe escalation in ebook pricing reported today.” Bobbi Newman has a nice roundup of links on the issue. Peter Brantley points out flaws in the pricing. Michael Kelley has an updated guide to library ebook publishers. Eric Hellman suggests some things that libraries should require from publishers in exchange for premium prices....
AL: E-Content, Mar. 2; Librarian by Day, Mar. 2; Publishers Weekly: PWxyz, Mar. 5; Library Journal: The Digital Shift, Feb. 24, Mar. 2; Go to Hellman, Mar. 4
Random House, meet me at Camera Three
Christopher Harris writes: “As Jon Stewart would say, we need to talk. Look, I understand things are a bit crazy for you right now. Ebook sales are rising, but they are kind of scary at the same time. Contracts, licenses, DRM, all of this is up in the air. So I get it; I see that you are concerned and looking for solutions. The first thing I want to say is thank you for hanging in there and trying to work through the issues. We appreciate it. But we really need to talk about this 300% thing.”...
AL: E-Content, Mar. 5
The once and future library
Charles G. Mueller writes: “So how do architects design libraries nowadays? They do it with humility and factor in the nature of the institution and its constituencies. Built-in flexibility in how spaces can be used now and reconfigured in the future is paramount. In general terms, there will be more, varied spaces but probably less overall square footage, fewer physical books, and more services. Compact, efficient libraries can be a good thing for patrons as users and taxpayers.”...
American Libraries feature
Books on demand come to Brooklyn
A group of 3rd-graders from Brooklyn’s P.S. 399 watched Robert Louis Stevenson’s A Child’s Garden of Verses being printed on demand in bound paperback format March 7 at Brooklyn (N.Y.) Public Library’s Central branch. The children were invited to a ribbon-cutting ceremony to introduce the library’s new Espresso Book Machine (above), which can print more than 8 million titles in any language with the push of a button....
American Libraries news, Mar. 7
Youth Matters: It’s always time for CE-TV
Linda W. Braun writes: “If you are interested in web-based professional development, you may consider some of the following resources. Have you heard of Khan Academy? Sal Khan started the organization in the belief that people could learn by watching short, targeted videos online. Subjects run the gamut from algebra to art history to the principles of banking to taking the SAT. He began by remotely tutoring his cousin in 2004 and created videos to help other cousins, and now the academy catalog includes more than 2,700 recordings.”...
American Libraries column, Mar./Apr.
On My Mind: The conversation continues @ your library
Nancy Kranich and Carlton Sears write: “Many librarians are already exploring new ways to engage, embed, and integrate libraries into the life of their communities. Academic librarians are eager to deepen their engagement on campus. School librarians strive to collaborate more closely with teachers. Public librarians are seeking new methods to align their missions with community needs. However, few have answered the call to move beyond talk to action.”...
American Libraries column, Mar./Apr.
Cleaning up after water damage
Q. The recent severe weather has some of our library regulars asking about salvage of wet books. What can I tell them? A. I’m going to address your question from two perspectives. First, what should an individual be doing? And second, what should a library be doing? The information in Tips for Salvaging Water-Damaged Valuables by the American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works and Heritage Preservation is designed for individuals....
AL: Ask the ALA Librarian, Mar. 7
Go back to the Top
Executive Director’s Message: Key strategies discussed
ALA Executive Director Keith Michael Fiels (right) writes: “ALA’s Executive Board discussions during the 2012 Midwinter Meeting in Dallas focused on some key Association initiatives. ALA’s Strategic Plan (PDF file) outlines Association goals and objectives and provides a framework for plans, strategies, and initiatives on a day-to-day and year-by-year basis. This past fall, the board met with the leadership of ALA’s 11 divisions as well as round table representatives to begin fleshing out the Association’s new strategic goal.”...
American Libraries column, Mar./Apr.
The 2012 ALA election: A guide
The Office of ALA Governance has created an electronic guide to this year’s election. Your Guide to the 2012 ALA Elections can be accessed in flipbook format or in PDF format. The guide was created because some members found it difficult to learn about ALA candidates prior to the election....
Office of ALA Governance, Mar. 6
Rebecca MacKinnon at Opening General Session
Focusing on why it is time to stop arguing over whether the internet empowers people and addressing the urgent question of how technology should be governed to support the rights and liberties of users around the world, journalist, internet policy specialist and author of the book Consent of the Networked Rebecca MacKinnon (right) will kick off the 2012 ALA Annual Conference at the Opening General Session on Friday, June 22....
Conference Services, Mar. 5
Dan Ariely to speak at Annual Conference
Behavioral economist and bestselling author Dan Ariely (right) takes a groundbreaking look at the way we behave, examining the contradictory forces that drive us to cheat and keep us honest. He will talk about these and other ideas from his forthcoming book, The Honest Truth About Dishonesty: How We Lie to Everyone—Especially Ourselves, as an Auditorium Speaker at the 2012 ALA Annual Conference on June 24....
Conference Services, Mar. 5
Vote for the talks you want to hear at Conference
Public voting is now open through March 25 for more than 50 talks in two new formats to determine which sessions will be added to this year’s Annual Conference program. ALA has opened a general call for “Conversation Starter” talks, fast-paced 45-minute sessions intended to jumpstart conversations and highlight emerging topics and trends. You can vote here for your favorite Conversation Starters. In addition, ALA is running a series of Ignite sessions that give presenters five minutes to share what they’re most passionate about. Vote here for Ignite sessions....
Conference Services, Mar. 7
Virtual Conference proposals wanted
We’re looking for dynamic presenters to move the needle forward for the profession. If that’s you, this is your chance to inspire others by submitting a proposal to present at the 2012 ALA Virtual Conference, July 18–19, on the theme of “Mapping Transformation.” Submit your proposal for an engaging 45-minute program before midnight on March 25....
Conference Services, Mar. 7
“Transforming Libraries” webinar March 8
Join a conversation on transforming libraries at a free March 8 webinar at 2–3 p.m. Central time. R. David Lankes and Barbara Stripling will host a webinar designed to stimulate conversation about harnessing the evolving role of libraries. Register online....
Office for Library Advocacy, Mar. 6
Discover Tech traveling exhibition
The ALA Public Programs Office, in partnership with the National Center for Interactive Learning at the Space Science Institute, the Lunar and Planetary Institute, and the National Girls Collaborative Project, has announced a new traveling exhibition opportunity for public libraries. Following a competitive application process, eight public libraries will be selected to host an interactive exhibition called Discover Tech: Engineers Make a World of Difference. Public libraries serving rural populations and underserved groups are especially invited to apply. Online applications must be submitted by May 1....
Public Programs Office, Mar. 5
New courses on recruitment and diversity
The Office for Diversity will introduce two new courses to its Diversity Leadership Online series, beginning April 18. This ongoing webinar series provides the foundation for a culture of responsible diversity leadership within the profession. Register and learn more about upcoming sessions here....
Office for Diversity, Mar. 5
COSWL discussion on National Women’s History Month
March is Women’s History Month, and the ALA Committee on the Status of Women in Librarianship and Northwestern University Libraries will be celebrating by cohosting a March 29 discussion, “Right Here I See My Own Books: A History of the Woman’s Library at the Chicago World’s Fair, 1893.” Led by authors Sarah Wadsworth and Wayne Wiegand, the event will take place at the Northwestern University School of Law in Chicago....
Office for Human Resource Development and Recruitment, Mar. 5; Booklist Online: Points of Reference, Mar. 1
Preservation Week publicity tools
Libraries of all types can promote Preservation Week @ your library (April 22–28) with these ALA publicity tools. The toolkit includes Preservation Week logos, program ideas, media templates, and bookmarks....
ALCTS, Mar. 6
Assessing rebuilding efforts in Haiti
“Two years after the earthquake, vast numbers of Haitian people are still struggling just to return to something resembling normal life,” said Leonard Kniffel, who returned March 5 from Port-au-Prince after a week of talks with librarians and government officials about ALA’s Haiti Library Relief fund. “Our dollars are making a difference,” he said, “but the need is so vast that we have to focus our efforts on sustainable projects that will advance the nation’s recovery from one of the largest natural disasters on record.”...
International Relations Office, Mar. 7
The American Library in Paris
Larry Nix writes: “We are fast approaching the 95th anniversary of America’s entry into World War I (April 6, 1917) which led to the creation of the Library War Service of the ALA a few months later. One of the legacies of the Library War Service was the creation of the American Library in Paris. I recently added a couple of items to my librariana collection related to the ALP. The first is a postcard showing the home of the ALP at 10 Rue de L’Élysée. The postcard (above) was obviously produced by ALA and includes information on its role in the war.”...
Library History Buff Blog, Mar. 3
Coping with workplace challenges
Librarians across all settings can face unexpected challenges or confrontations from an angry or upset patron, community member, coworker, or concerned citizen. Knowing how to handle these difficult conversations in ways that can lead to a healthy resolution is critical. These issues will be discussed in a free webinar, “Moving Difficult Conversations Toward Positive Outcomes: Coping with Challenges in the Library Workplace,” on April 11. Register online....
Office for Human Resource Development and Recruitment, Mar. 6
Workshop on gadgets and gizmos
ALA TechSource announces a new iteration of Jason Griffey’s popular workshop, “Gadgets in the Library: A Practical Guide to Personal Electronics for Librarians.” This two-part workshop will take place on May 10 and 17. Registration is available at the ALA Store....
ALA TechSource, Mar. 6
What Drupal can do for you
ALA TechSource will host another session of Sean Fitzpatrick’s workshop, “Drupal Basics: What Drupal Can Do for Your Library.” This 90-minute workshop will take place on May 30. Registration is available at the ALA Store....
ALA TechSource, Mar. 6
Hiring, training, and supervising shelvers
ALA Editions will host a new three-part workshop, “Hiring, Training, and Supervising Shelvers” with Patricia Tunstall, that will take place in three 60-minute parts on Wednesdays, May 9, 16, and 23. Registration is available at the ALA Store....
ALA Editions, Mar. 6
Using social media in the K–12 classroom
In today’s classrooms, educators can engage their students using a wide range of digital and social networking tools, from wikis and blogs to podcasts and videoconferences. In her timely new book, Using Web 2.0 and Social Networking Tools in the K-12 Classroom, published by Neal-Schuman Publishers, Beverley E. Crane brings together the best tools, ideas, examples, resources, and lessons to help educators create unique and modern curricula to motivate their students....
ALA Neal-Schuman, Mar. 6
Go back to the Top
Featured review: Historical fiction
Trigiani, Adriana. The Shoemaker’s Wife. May 2012. 448p. Harper, hardcover (978-0-061-25709-4).
As the 20th century begins, two teenagers living in the Italian Alps, Enza, and Ciro, share a kiss that will linger across continents and time. Forced by circumstances to leave their beloved mountains, both land in New York City, where they pass in and out of one another’s lives. Gradually, the practical-minded Enza makes a name for herself as a seamstress, eventually sewing for the great Caruso at the Metropolitan Opera, while Ciro develops into a skilled shoemaker and the charming rake of Little Italy. Their paths remain star-crossed until Ciro realizes what Enza has known all along: that they are destined for each other....
Joyce Saricks writes: “Good news for public librarians: ALA’s Public Library Association hosts its biennial conference in Philadelphia March 13–17. This conference offers a chance to share not only ideas but also the books in which we’re finding inspiration and pleasure. PLA has long celebrated books and reading. Do you know of any other library journal in which contributors list what they’re currently reading? I’d like to encourage us to take this emphasis one step further with a book-networking challenge. After all, the book in all its formats is surely the most recognizable public library brand.”...
@ Visit Booklist Online for other reviews and much more....
Go back to the Top
Walk the exhibit hall like a pro
Have you registered for ALA Annual Conference in Anaheim yet? Early Bird registration is open through May 13. There is so much to look forward to, not the least of which is the Exhibit Hall. The ALA Annual Conference Exhibit Hall can be overwhelming, especially if it’s your first time. Here are some tips on how to handle the exhibits like a pro. Number 1: Target what you want to see first....
YALSA Blog, Feb. 21
Download that airline app
Susan Stellin writes: “Now that half of all travelers carry smartphones, airlines are rolling out apps that allow these devices to take care of most of the tasks agents used to handle. While many travel apps specialize in things like tracking a flight or guiding travelers through airports, the airline apps aim to do it all, from checking in to flight status updates and baggage tracking. American and Delta offer apps for the broadest range of devices. Some apps are better than others, but all are free and most travelers will find them to be useful, particularly on the day of travel.”...
New York Times, Feb. 29
What to do in Disneyland if you only have one day
You’re in Anaheim, California. You’ve gotten up early and beaten the traffic to pull into an enormous parking lot. In fact, you’re at Disneyland Park half an hour before the doors open, just to be ready to go inside. You’ve got water bottles and sunscreen and your most comfortable sneakers on. Why are you so prepared? Cause you have just one day to explore the Happiest Place on Earth. Here are some tips to maximize your time and see the best attractions....
Go back to the Top
Join YALSA for a Hunger Games tweetup
Join YALSA on March 8 for a tweetup in honor of Teen Tech Week to discuss the film premiere of The Hunger Games and your library. The tweetup, sponsored by YALSA’s The Hub blog, will take place from 3:30 to 5 p.m. Eastern time with the hashtag #THGyalsa. The Hub will also host a concurrent CoverItLive session....
YALSA, Mar. 1
PLA to discuss the future of public libraries
Thousands of public librarians, library professionals, authors, publishers, and vendors from across the country and around the world will meet in Philadelphia March 13–17 at the PLA 2012 Conference to discuss a host of pressing issues affecting the future of public libraries—such as access to ebook lending, library funding, new technologies, and advocacy. Don’t forget to download the PLA Conference mobile app. Looking for a job? Visit the PLA Career Center. Watch PLA Conference Chair Karen Danczak Lyons (above) explain why this PLA Conference will be the best ever (3:10)....
PLA, Mar. 6; YouTube, Mar. 2
Scott Walter appointed C&RL editor
ACRL has appointed Scott Walter (right) to the post of editor of College & Research Libraries. He will serve a three-year term beginning July 1, 2013, succeeding Joseph J. Branin. Walter currently serves as associate university librarian for services at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. On April 30, he will assume the position of university librarian at DePaul University in Chicago....
ACRL, Mar. 6
MLA members to get complimentary Choice reviews
The Modern Language Association and Choice have announced a pilot project to provide MLA members with complimentary access to Choice Reviews Online through a link from the members-only portion of the MLA website....
ACRL, Mar. 6
Hosts selected for Scholarly Communication Road Show
ACRL has selected five sites from 12 applications to host its “Scholarly Communication: From Understanding to Engagement” workshop this spring and summer, including the first host site outside the US. In its fourth year, when the 20 workshops are complete, the road show will have visited 17 different states, the District of Columbia, one US territory, and one Canadian province....
ACRL, Mar. 6
Enter the first ALSC/YALSA video contest
The first ever ALSC/YALSA video contest is looking for entries that show what tweens, young teens, and technology look like at your local library. What is the life of a tween or young teen like in this digital age? What are the particular challenges and opportunities they face online? What should libraries be doing? Selected videos will be shown at the ALSC and YALSA Joint Presidents’ Program at ALA Annual Conference in Anaheim. All entrants will be eligible to win a $100 Amazon gift card. The deadline is April 30....
ALSC Blog, Mar. 2
Duane Bray to address joint ALCTS/ACRL program
Duane Bray (right), a partner at IDEO, a global innovation and design consulting firm, is the featured speaker at the joint ALCTS/ACRL President’s Program in Anaheim on June 25. Bray’s presentation, “Future of the Book: Innovation in Traditional Industries,” will delve into the challenges traditional industries often face when experiencing disruptive change....
ALCTS, Mar. 5
Preconference on business reference
RUSA’s June 22 preconference, “Mastering Business Acumen (MBA) in a Day: Business Concepts for Library Reference,” will provide librarians who may be intimidated by business reference questions with a foundational understanding of business concepts and prepare them to answer these types of questions with confidence. Conference registration information is available here....
RUSA, Mar. 6
YALSA wins badge competition
YALSA and its design partner Badgeville were named one of 30 winners from a pool of 91 finalists in the Badges for Lifelong Learning Competition on March 1 at the Digital Media and Learning Conference in San Francisco. The winners—awarded grants ranging from $25,000 to $175,000—demonstrate the wide range of approaches to, and uses for, digital badges and badge systems. YALSA’s badges will be based on its Competencies for Serving Youth....
YALSA, Mar. 2
Keys to successful coteaching
Now available on the AASL website is the newest installment of “30-Second Thought Leadership: Insights from Leaders in the School Library Community” series. The series features school librarian experts delivering brief and practical advice based on the themes of Knowledge Quest issues....
AASL, Mar. 6
Prepare for Día April 30
More resources to serve diverse populations are now available to libraries through the new website devoted to El día de los niños / El día de los libros (Children’s Day / Book Day), known as Día. Día encourages libraries to support multicultural family literacy throughout the year and to celebrate children and literacy annually on April 30....
ALSC, Mar. 6
Getting started with GIS
LITA is offering a new web course, “Getting Started with GIS,” presented by Eva Dodsworth, geospatial data services librarian at the University of Waterloo Map Library. The three-week course will be held April 9–30 and will consist of a combination of asynchronous lectures, demonstrations, and hands-on tutorials. Register online....
LITA, Mar. 6
AASL expands the reach of its Fall Forum
AASL is expanding the educational reach of its biennial Fall Forum by offering registrants the opportunity to attend via one of four satellite sites. AASL’s national institute, “Transliteracy and the School Library Program,” will take place October 12–13, in Greenville, South Carolina, and satellite site offerings include western and eastern Pennsylvania, north Texas, and the San Francisco Bay Area....
AASL, Mar. 6
Go back to the Top
New literary awards to debut at ALA Annual Conference
Beginning with the 2012 ALA Annual Conference in Anaheim, California, ALA will award new Andrew Carnegie Medals for Excellence in Fiction and Nonfiction to one adult book in each category. The medals, which are funded by a grant from the Carnegie Corporation on the occasion of its centennial, will give $5,000 to each winning author and $1,500 apiece to each finalist. Cosponsored by Booklist and RUSA, the Carnegie medals mark the first time ALA is offering single-book awards for adult fiction and nonfiction....
ALA Public Information Office, Mar. 5
Turock and Reed named ALA Honorary Members
Betty J. Turock and Sen. Jack Reed (D-R.I.) were elected to honorary ALA membership in action taken by the ALA Council at the 2012 Midwinter Meeting in Dallas. Honorary membership is conferred in recognition of outstanding contributions to libraries and librarianship. Former ALA President Turock was nominated in recognition of her outstanding commitment and achievement in the field of library and information science. Reed was cited for his continuing, unwavering, and effective support of libraries in the US Congress....
Office of ALA Governance, Mar. 6
2012 Peggy Sullivan Award
The 2012 Peggy Sullivan Award for Public Library Administrators Supporting Services to Children has been awarded to Lynda Welborn Freas (right), director of family services at Anythink Libraries, Thornton, Colorado. The award is presented annually to an individual in a library administrator role who has shown exceptional understanding and support of public library service to children. Freas received the award for her innovative approach to providing children’s services throughout her career....
Office of ALA Governance, Mar. 1
2012 Marshall Cavendish Award
The Waukegan (Ill.) Public Library has been named the 2012 winner of the Marshall Cavendish Excellence in Library Programming Award. The award is given in recognition to either a school or public library that demonstrates excellence in library programming. The library was cited for its creation of an Early Learning Center (above) to meet the demands of a community affected by changing demographics and a lack of resources....
Office of ALA Governance, Mar. 2
Try out for a John Cotton Dana Award
Have you had success with a library marketing campaign? The H. W. Wilson Foundation, LLAMA, and EBSCO Publishing announce that the chances to win a John Cotton Dana Award have increased tremendously. Now there are eight awards, and the amount for each winner has gone up to $10,000. Apply by March 15....
LLAMA, Mar. 6
Apply for a Library Interior Design Award
The submission deadline for the Library Interior Design Awards is March 30. These biennial awards honor excellence in library interior design and promote examples of extraordinary design reflected through innovative concepts. They are cosponsored by LLAMA and the International Interior Design Association. Entry forms and official guidelines may be found online....
LLAMA, Mar. 6
2012 Leab Exhibition Awards
The ACRL Rare Books and Manuscripts Section has selected five winners of the 2012 Katharine Kyes Leab and Daniel J. Leab American Book Prices Current Exhibition Awards. The awards recognize outstanding exhibition catalogs issued by American or Canadian institutions in conjunction with library exhibitions, as well as electronic exhibition catalogs of outstanding merit issued within a digital environment....
ACRL, Mar. 5
Deadline extended for Jesse Shera awards
The Library Research Round Table has extended the submission deadline for two research awards named for Jesse H. Shera. The new deadline date is March 30. One award recognizes distinguished published research and the other is given in support of dissertation research....
Library Research Round Table, Mar. 2
Achievement in Library Diversity Research
As part of its ongoing support of the propagation of library-based diversity research, the Office for Diversity is seeking nominations for the 2012 Achievement in Library Diversity Research honor. Nominations are due by April 1 and should include the name of the individual nominated, contact information for that person, and a short description of their diversity research accomplishments....
Office for Diversity, Mar. 6
2012 Carroll Preston Baber Research Grant
Libby Pollard and Melissa Fry are the winners of the 2012 Carroll Preston Baber Research Grant for their project titled “Assessment of Non-Library Use at the Jeffersonville Township (Ind.) Public Library.” The $3,000 grant supports innovative research that could lead to an improvement in library services to any specific group of people....
Office for Research and Statistics, Mar. 2
2012 Louise Seaman Bechtel Fellowship
ALSC and the Special Collections and Bechtel Fellowship Committee have awarded the 2012 Louise Seaman Bechtel Fellowship to Allison Angell (right). The Bechtel Fellowship is designed to allow qualified children’s librarians to spend a month or more reading and studying at the Baldwin Library of Historical Children’s Literature, a part of the George A. Smathers Libraries at the University of Florida, Gainesville. Angell is the head of youth services at the Benicia (Calif.) Public Library....
ALSC, Mar. 7
2012 Penguin Young Readers Group grants
ALSC has awarded 2012 Penguin Young Readers Group grants to Heather Schubert, Eric Barbus, Linda Klein, and Donna Alvis. The $600 stipend enables up to four children’s librarians to attend their first ALA Annual Conference....
ALSC, Mar. 6
Rethinking Resource Sharing Innovation Awards
The Rethinking Resource Sharing Initiative has created an award to encourage libraries and librarians to make changes in how they do resource sharing and improve service to users. In 2012, one winning submission will be awarded a cash prize of $1,000. The recipient will be announced at the ALA Annual Conference in Anaheim. Submit a description of the user-centric service change you have made that has improved resource sharing in your library by May 1....
Rethinking Resource Sharing Initiative
Mandel Foundation grants $5 million to West Palm Beach
The Mandel Foundation has awarded a $5 million grant to the West Palm Beach (Fla.) Library Foundation to transform the library into a world-class institution. The grant will be used to create an endowment, develop the WPBL Foundation, and fund innovative programs geared toward making the library more user friendly....
West Palm Beach (Fla.) Library Foundation, Feb. 21
2012 Ezra Jack Keats New Writer and New Illustrator Awards
The Ezra Jack Keats Foundation, in partnership with the de Grummond Children’s Literature Collection at the University of Southern Mississippi Libraries, announced the winners of the 26th Annual Ezra Jack Keats New Writer and New Illustrator Awards: New Writer winner Meg Medina for Tía Isa Wants a Car, and New Illustrator winner Jenny Sue Kostecki-Shaw for Same, Same But Different. The awards will be presented at the Fay B. Kaigler Children’s Book Festival on April 12....
Ezra Jack Keats Foundation, Mar. 6
2012 Blue Peter Book Awards
The Considine Curse (Bloomsbury), a werewolf mystery by South London author Gareth P. Jones, was announced March 1 as the winner of the 2012 Blue Peter Book of the Year Award on a special episode of the BBC-TV children’s program Blue Peter, broadcast from the John Rylands Library in Manchester. The Best Children’s Book of the Last 10 Years Award went to Jeff Kinney’s Diary of a Wimpy Kid....
Booktrust, Mar. 1
Go back to the Top
Chicago teens design Lady Gaga tour bus
Working out of the YOUmedia teen space at Chicago’s Harold Washington Library Center, six 16- and 17-year-olds have been helping to design a tour bus for Lady Gaga, a specialized vehicle that will join the pop star’s caravan when she goes out on the road again next year. The teens were featured in a celebrity philanthropic event at Harvard University on February 29. Called the “Born Brave” bus, its mission echoes Gaga’s new Born This Way Foundation and its interior will feature a media-focused youth space much like YOUmedia itself....
Chicago Tribune, Feb. 28
Publishers oppose bill on scholarly open access
A group of 81 scholarly journal publishers came out against the latest iteration of the Federal Research Public Access Act (FRPAA)—a bill that would require federal research grantees to make their resulting academic papers freely available to the public no more than six months after publication in a scholarly journal. The bill, introduced in February in both the House (H.R. 4004) and Senate (S. 2096), is the third iteration of FRPAA to be introduced since 2006; two previous versions failed to make it to a vote....
Inside Higher Ed, Mar. 6; Association of American Publishers, Mar. 5
Protesters rally against Harvard Library layoffs
Approximately 50 protesters gathered in front of the Holyoke Center on the campus of Harvard University March 1 to rally against layoffs that may result from the Harvard Library’s upcoming reorganization. On February 13, the university announced a voluntary retirement package for library workers. Three organizers with the Harvard Union of Clerical and Technical Workers, which represents close to half the library workforce at Harvard, wrote an op-ed in the Harvard Crimson March 5, stating the implications of the reorganization....
Harvard Crimson, Jan. 23, Mar. 2, 5
MLK Library’s future: Half a library or none at all?
Mike DeBonis writes: “Last fall a blue-ribbon panel of planners, developers, and architects looked at what could be done with the historic but increasingly unsuitable Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library in downtown Washington, D.C. The options included (a) renovating the building, (b) selling off the building and using the proceeds to build a new library elsewhere, and (c) expanding the current building and dividing it between a library and another, revenue-generating use. The panel’s final report is now public, as is this news release from DCPL.”...
Washington Post: District of DeBonis, Mar. 5
Robolibraries roll out in Chicago suburbs
Libraries short on cash, parking, and staff are looking at self-service options to reach customers during off hours without adding work for employees. Tucked into vending machines or train station lockers, robolibraries allow patrons to pick up or drop off DVDs and books at their convenience during a time when many suburban libraries are cutting operating hours....
Chicago Tribune, Mar. 7
Library settles lawsuit with author of Library Diaries
Four years after a book exposed details of residents’ lives in the small town of Ludington, Michigan, the book’s author, Sally Stern, a local library worker fired for writing The Library Diaries, filed a wrongful termination complaint in US District Court in Grand Rapids. It was settled in February with Stern receiving $57,000. The Library Diaries draws from Stern’s 14 years as a library assistant at the Mason County (Mich.) District Library. She wrote it as a memoir but, before publication, labeled it fiction....
Detroit News, Mar. 4
Laura Bush gives final grants for Gulf Coast school libraries
Former First Lady Laura Bush (right) returned to Chalmette High School in St. Bernard Parish, Louisiana, March 1 for the fifth time since Hurricane Katrina and announced grants ranging from $20,000 to $60,000 to 10 Louisiana school libraries. The grants are part of her foundation’s Gulf Coast School Library Recovery Initiative. Bush also announced—to the surprise of the librarians in attendance from many of the schools—that all the 116 school libraries that have received grants from the foundation over the past six years will also receive about $1,000 each....
New Orleans Times-Picayune, Mar. 1; Tales from a Loud Librarian, Mar. 1
Los Angeles Times, Mar. 1–2
Advice from the man who helped save LA’s libraries
In 2010, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa handed Los Angeles Public Library a budget so severe that the system’s board couldn’t keep any of the city’s 73 libraries open more than five days a week. In March 2011, LAPL’s fortunes changed when voters approved a ballot initiative that forced the municipal government to rearrange the city’s budget in order to provide the library with enough funding to restore hours at all its branches. The man in charge of LAPL during this tumultuous period was Martín Gómez (right), Los Angeles’ soon-to-be-former city librarian....
Torontoist, Mar. 2
Seaside sued over meeting room policy
A lawsuit, filed in US District Court against the Seaside (Oreg.) Public Library, claims that the library’s policy involving the use of its meeting room is unconstitutional. A Florida-based nonprofit organization called Liberty Counsel filed the suit, claiming that the policy discriminates on the basis of religious content and viewpoint. The lawsuit stems from a request by Benjamin Boyd, who wrote a letter August 6, 2010, seeking to use the meeting room on behalf of the Liberty Foundation (now known as the Liberty Counsel)....
Daily Astorian (Oreg.), Mar. 2
Million-dollar boost to Prince George’s school libraries
School libraries in Prince George’s County, Maryland, received a $1.2 million boost for additional staff and materials as the school board voted February 24 to send the $1.65 billion FY2013 school budget to county officials for approval. Board members introduced amendments that would allocate $2 per student to purchase library materials and offer a full-time library media specialist—up from the proposed part-time employee—at each of the county’s 22 traditional high schools....
Prince George’s (Md.) Gazette, Feb. 24
Library book returned after 100 years
A 500-year-old medical textbook has finally found its way back to Dublin’s Marsh’s Library after having been lost for more than a century. It was bought along with an antique mirror for 90 euros ($118 US) from a Dublin junk shop by an unnamed barrister and returned to the library March 2. Originally published in 1538 in Basel, Switzerland, the book is the third volume in a series of five on the medical works of physician, philosopher, and surgeon Galen....
Irish Times (Dublin), Mar. 6
Go back to the Top
Librarian helped launch the first website in North America
Diane Rezendes Khirallah writes: “On December 12, 1991, the first web server in North America went into operation. It came from what is now SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, operated by Stanford University, whose mission was high-energy physics, not computer science. The server, inspired by an idea developed at the European particle physics center CERN, provided users remote access to a Stanford database of some 200,000 preprints of scientific papers.” SLAC Librarian Louise Addis (above) was part of the team that established the first website. She received the LITA Gaylord Award in 2001. Read a 2000 interview with her....
Symmetry, Mar.; Stanford Report, Apr. 11, 2001; First Monday 5, no. 5 (May 1, 2000)
11 inspiring nonprofit Facebook timelines
Heather Mansfield writes: “Most nonprofits have not yet upgraded to the new Facebook Timeline for Pages design, but as more and more admins begin to realize that the Timeline design and tool set is much more than just uploading a photo to the top of your page, I think we’ll see many of our favorite nonprofits take the leap and upgrade before the mandatory rollout of Facebook Timeline to all pages on March 30. Here are 11 nonprofits that have upgraded to Facebook Timeline.”...
Nonprofit Tech 2.0, Mar. 4
What is Action Analytics?
Gwen Evans writes: “Technology is enabling a different kind of future-oriented analytics. Action Analytics is evidence-based, combines data sets from different silos, and uses actions, performance, and data from the past to provide recommendations meant to influence future actions at both the institutional and the individual level. It was a presentation by Mark David Milliron at Educause 2011 that made me think about the possibilities of the interventionist aspect of analytics for libraries.”...
ACRL Tech Connect, Mar. 5
Innovative Interfaces joins the private equity club
Innovative Interfaces, one of the veteran companies of the library automation industry, has been one of the major holdouts in the wave of private equity investments that has reshaped the library automation industry over the past six years. The company has remained under the sole ownership of its cofounder Jerry Kline. That position now changes as a pair of private equity firms have made strategic investments in Innovative Interfaces and its sister company, SkyRiver Technology Solutions....
ALA TechSource blog, Mar. 1
Nearly half of American adults are smartphone owners
Nearly half (46%) of American adults are smartphone owners as of February 2012, an increase of 11 percentage points over the 35% of Americans who owned a smartphone last May. Two in five adults (41%) own a cellphone that is not a smartphone, meaning that smartphone owners are now more prevalent within the overall population than owners of more basic mobile phones....
Pew Research Center: Internet and American Life Project, Mar. 1
How a web link can take control of your smartphone
Tom Simonite writes: “A chilling demonstration to a small, packed room at the RSA security conference February 29 showed how clicking a single bad web link while using a phone running Google’s Android operating system could give an attacker full remote control of your phone. Once George Kurtz and colleagues from security startup CrowdStrike were done, they could record phone calls, intercept text messages, and track the hacked phone’s location at all times.”...
Technology Review, Feb. 29
How to buy an external hard drive
Joel Santo Domingo writes: “External hard drives promise almost unlimited storage. For under $100, you can add a terabyte of data to your PC or Mac, portable or desktop. That’s enough for over 750,000 MP3s or photos, or more than 230 DVD-sized movies. Auxiliary storage allows you to back up your system files, in case your primary system goes kaput.” Here are five of the best external hard drives out there....
PC Magazine, Feb. 29, Mar. 1
Go back to the Top
The arithmetic of library ebook lending
Jonathan Chambers writes: “I became curious about the economics of ebook lending, and what I found has made me even more curious. My conclusion: Public libraries’ acquisition and lending of ebooks could be structured in a way that would not have any greater or lesser financial impact on the publishing industry than library lending of physical books. This is true even if ebook lending is made more convenient (less friction) for library patrons, as it should be.”...
Library Renewal, Mar. 5
Should libraries get out of the ebook business?
Bobbi Newman writes: “I know what you are going to say, I can hear it already. But the truth is our patrons want a lot of things we can’t give them. When it comes to ebooks, we cannot give them what they want, not really. What we can do, what maybe we should do, is spend their tax money wisely, and I am no longer convinced that spending it on the current ebook system is a wise move.”...
Librarian by Day, Mar. 7
Alternative uses for the pesky ebook budget
Andy Woodworth writes: “Not happy with an ebook collection that has limited checkouts or paying three times the price for the privilege? I’m willing to bet that there are better uses for that ebook budget money that would yield a higher rate of return on investment, better community outreach and involvement, and make more fiscal sense for your library’s stakeholders. So, I brainstormed a few ideas, but I’m hoping that you can help me think of more possible uses. Let’s begin!”...
Agnostic, Maybe, Mar. 5
Can you concentrate on Flaubert when Facebook is only a swipe away, or give your true devotion to Mr. Darcy while Twitter beckons? People who read ebooks on tablets like the iPad are realizing that while a book in print or on a black-and-white Kindle is straightforward and immersive, a tablet offers a menu of distractions that can fragment the reading experience—or stop it in its tracks....
New York Times, Mar. 4
If books are our brand . . .
Carson Block writes: “While it’s true that ebooks are books, it’s also true that ebooks are not books. The broadening of the definition of ‘book’ complicates one of the primary functions of the public library, which is connecting people to information, education, and enrichment (mostly in the form of books) at no direct cost to the seeker as a tax-funded public good. What happens when this primary function undergoes a dramatic shift, especially when it’s not driven by the library, but by the marketplace?”...
Public Libraries 51, no. 1 (Jan./Feb.)
Predatory online journals lure scholars
Michael Stratford writes: “Amy L. Reynolds, associate dean at Louisiana State University’s Manship School of Mass Communication, had never heard of the Journal of Mass Communication and Journalism when she first received an email soliciting submissions for it. But she took a quick look at the journal’s website, recognized some colleagues on its editorial board, and sent a note about the publishing opportunity to her graduate students. She now regrets doing that, because she found out the company running the journal is an open-access publisher operating under an author-pays model.”...
Chronicle of Higher Education, Mar. 4
Fair use ruling sought in HathiTrust case
Plaintiffs filed a motion (PDF file) February 28 asking Federal District Judge Harold Baer to rule on the fair use defense in the HathiTrust lawsuit. At issue is a mass book digitization program through which Google converted millions of copyright-protected library books into machine-readable digital files that were duplicated and distributed to university libraries and HathiTrust, an online digital repository. James Grimmelmann offers a detailed analysis of this “early knockout” tactic....
Authors Guild Blog, Feb. 29; The Laboratoruim, Mar. 4
OverDrive breaks ground on new HQ in Ohio
Ebook distributor OverDrive announced March 7 it has begun construction of a new 95,000-square-foot world headquarters and “Blue Sky Campus” in Garfield Heights, Ohio. Gary Price points out: “Congrats to OverDrive but at a time when libraries (their customers) are having budgetary issues (to say the least) is it a good idea for them to point out that the new HQ will have two indoor basketball courts, a walking path, and pond?”...
OverDrive, Mar. 7; INFOdocket, Mar. 7
The disappearing virtual library
Christopher Kelty writes: “In late February, a website called library.nu disappeared. A coalition of international scholarly publishers accused the site of piracy and convinced a judge in Munich, Germany, to shut it down. Library.nu (formerly Gigapedia) had offered, if reports are to be believed, between 400,000 and a million digital books for free. And not just any books, but scholarly books. But who were these sad criminals, these barbarians at the gates ready to bring our information economy to its knees? They were students and scholars from every corner of the planet.”...
Al Jazeera, Mar. 1
10 things ebooks won’t tell you
Kelli B. Grant writes: “Don’t dismantle the bookshelves yet. We reveal why e-reading is still far from perfect. #2: Ebook publishing platforms are so easy to use; just about anyone can publish a book. That increased freedom means there’s little oversight on copyright or quality. Readers could spend good money on poorly written content—or worse, something which could be found elsewhere online for free.”...
SmartMoney, Mar. 5
Four reasons to love e-reading
Becky O’Neil writes: “I don’t like to do what everyone else does. I waited forever to join online social networks, I scoffed at the cost of the first iPods while happily polishing my scratched CDs, and I was known to hug and pet books in my book collection even while my friends were raving about e-readers. How was I converted to The Dark Side, you may wonder? Well, it all began with a long Russian novel.”...
YALSA The Hub, Mar. 6
Go back to the Top
Three young adults will be featured in a unique Auditorium Speaker session at the ALA Annual Conference on June 23. William Kamkwamba brought electricity, light, and the promise of a better life to his village in Malawi. Talia Leman (above) has orchestrated the philanthropic efforts of 12 million children on four continents. Gaby Rodriguez reveals how she was able to fake her own pregnancy and what she learned from the experience.
Stay on top of your profession and learn online with ALA Publishing. Next month: Sue Polanka shows how to effectively integrate ebooks and e-readers into your services and collections, and Cheryl Tarsala shows how to apply Dewey Decimal Classification. NEW! From ALA Publishing.
Great Libraries of the World
Biblioteca Marciana, Venice, Italy. Named after St. Mark, the patron saint of Venice, the library began with Byzantine Cardinal Basilios Bessarion’s 1468 donation to the city of around 1,000 books, codices, and manuscripts. The collection came to be housed in the neoclassical building known as the Libreria Sansoviniana constructed on the Piazza San Marco by Jacopo Sansovino and Vincenzo Scamozzi from 1537 to 1591. Its two floors are linked by a staircase decorated with frescoes and gilded stucco. In 1904 the collection was moved to Sansovino’s adjacent Zecca (built in 1537–1547 as a mint), but it soon expanded back into its earlier quarters. The ground-floor vestibule has a ceiling painting, La Sapienza (1560), by Titian, which was restored to its original brilliance in 1986.
Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana, Florence, Italy. The library is housed in a building commissioned by the Medici family for their private library, planned and partially built by Michelangelo in 1523–1534, and continued by others for its grand opening in 1571. Notable holdings include the Nahuatl-language Florentine Codex, a major source of Aztec life before the Spanish conquest; the 6th-century Syriac Rabbula Gospels; the Codex Amiatinus, which contains the earliest surviving manuscript of the Latin Vulgate Bible; the Squarcialupi Codex, a primary source for 14th-century Italian music; the fragmentary Erinna papyrus containing poems by a friend of Sappho’s; and a 1351 sea atlas showing an accurate outline of Africa.
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 2013 by ALA Editions.
Librarian for Chinese Studies, Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut. As the subject specialist responsible for library support of research and teaching about China-related topics at Yale, the Librarian for Chinese Studies develops strong working relationships with faculty, students, and affiliated researchers in Chinese studies across departments and programs, taking initiative to identify and meet their expectations for collections and services. The Librarian for Chinese Studies partners with departments and programs on projects that further teaching and scholarship, such as digitization, web publishing, workshops, and other initiatives that enhance the academic mission....
Digital Library of the Week
The Litchfield Collection on the History of Fatty Materials is part of the Hagley Digital Archives at the Hagley Museum and Library in Wilmington, Delaware. Most of the items in this collection relate to the advertising and production of soaps, oils, food products, and other consumer products. The image shown above is part of a group that showcases margarine-related items and includes information on other oils and fats, including photos of people making butter and workers processing olives into olive oil and preparing them for shipment.
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.
“The librarian must have all of the qualifications of a good routine worker: quickness, accuracy, and neatness. Even the girl who can never become more than a thoroughly reliable routine worker will find here an unusually pleasant workroom, good associates, and reasonable pay; and her services will be in demand more and more as the work of the library becomes more completely specialized.”
—Eli Witwer Weaver, “Librarianship,” Profitable Vocations for Girls (New York: A. S. Barnes, 1915), Chapter 25, p. 138.
Associated College Libraries of Central Pennsylvania, Spring Conference, Holiday Inn, Harrisburg-East. “Embracing the Customs and Culture of the Digital Native.”
Electronic Resources and Libraries Conference, AT&T Conference Center, Austin, Texas.
International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions Newspaper Section, International Newspaper Conference, Bibliothèque nationale de France, Paris.
New Mexico Library Association, Las Cruces Convention Center.
Catholic Library Association, Annual Convention, Boston.
Montana Library Association, Annual Conference, Huntley Lodge, Big Sky. “Reaching New Summits.”
Popular Culture Association / American Culture Association, National Conference, Boston Marriott Copley Place.
Texas Library Association, Annual Conference, George R. Brown Convention Center, Houston. “Relevant, Responsive, Revolutionary, Right Now.”
Washington Library Association, Annual Conference, Tulalip Resort Conference Center. “One Tribe: Bringing Washington's Libraries Together.”
Florida Library Association, Annual Conference, Wyndham Orlando Resort. “Vibrant and Vital Florida Libraries.”
Lebanese Library Association, Annual Conference, Le Bristol Hotel, Beirut. “The Changing Face of Libraries: Inspiration, Transformation, and Innovation.”
American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works, Workshop, Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, D.C. “TechFocus II: Caring for Film and Slide Art.”
Saskatchewan Library Association, Annual Conference, Ramada Hotel and Convention Centre, Regina. “Celebrating Our Past, Embracing Our Future.”
PrestoCentre, Screening the Future Conference, on audiovisual archives, University of Southern California, Ronald Tutor Campus Center, Los Angeles. “Play, Pause, and Press Forward.”
LOEX of the West, Conference, Woodbury University, Burbank, California. “Creative Landscapes: Information Literacy for All Terrains.”
Northwest Interlibrary Loan and Resource Sharing Conference, Portland (Oreg.) Community College, Sylvania Campus. “Delivering on the Discovery Expectation.”
Third International Symposium on Information Management in a Changing World, Hacettepe University, Ankara, Turkey. “E-Science and Information Management.”
Georgia International Conference on Information Literacy, Coastal Georgia Center, Savannah.
American Libraries Direct
Direct is a free electronic newsletter emailed every Wednesday
to personal members of the American
Library Association and subscribers.
Laurie D. Borman,
Editor and Publisher,
advertise in American Libraries Direct, contact:
links outside the ALA website are provided for informational purposes
only. Questions about the content of any external site should be
addressed to the administrator of that site.
Sign up to receive AL Direct every Wednesday here.
50 E. Huron St.
Chicago, IL 60611