AL Direct masthead

American Libraries Online | ALA News | Booklist Online
Seattle Update| Division News| Awards & Grants | Libraries in the News
Issues | Tech Talk | E-Content | Books & Reading | Tips & Ideas
Great Libraries of the World | Digital Library of the Week | Calendar

The e-newsletter of the American Library Association | November 14, 2012

AL Live

Recorded Books

AL Buyers Guide

American Libraries Online

Denver Public Library will be able to expand its service hours by 40%, to a minimum of 48 hours per weekOverall, libraries fare well at the ballot box
Beverly Goldberg and Jordan Brandes write: “Voters showed their library love at the polls November 6 by supporting a series of millages and bond issues for operations and construction around the nation, although there were also some notable disappointments. What follows is a quick snapshot of library-related election results.”...
American Libraries news, Nov. 14

Marketing strategist Terry Kendrick says libraries need to separate themselves from the competitionMarketing your library
Ned Potter writes: “Terry Kendrick (right) is the guru of strategic marketing in libraries. His book Developing Strategic Marketing Plans That Really Work is a must-read, and he writes, speaks, and runs workshops on marketing libraries all over the UK and in no fewer than 26 countries abroad. I talked to him about all things marketing strategy for my recent book, The Library Marketing Toolkit (Facet, 2012).”...
American Libraries feature

Outside/In: Unforgettable passwords
David Lee King and Michael Porter write: “Regardless of the number of passwords you may have, we all know they can be difficult to keep track of. Now there’s an even greater concern about security because of improved computer processing speeds, which enable hacking programs to identify valid password combinations with rapid ease. So, how can you keep your passwords safe and memorable? Here are some tips.”...
American Libraries column, Nov./Dec.; Ars Technica, Aug. 20; New York Times, Nov. 7

Paul W. HankinsYouth Matters: Connect guys with authors
Abby Johnson writes: “It was a sunny June afternoon, perfect for playing baseball, taking a dip in the local pool, or having a virtual chat with a favorite author over Skype about what you’ve been reading. That was the message the New Albany–Floyd County (Ind.) Public Library set out to impart this summer through our first Guys Read program series, designed to attract boys to the library and get them excited about books. We sought to make that virtual guy-to-author connection with the help of local high school teacher and Twitter legend Paul Hankins (right).”...
American Libraries column, Nov./Dec.

Cover of the Nov./Dec. American LibrariesNovember/December issue online
In this issue, get advice for librarians about today’s job search (social media and networking), as well as Midwinter must-dos, personal branding, writing for nonlibrarians, daily life for librarians in Iraq, partnering with local musicians, how libraries count in the 2012 elections, how to put on a how-to festival, and new Americans and the digital literacy gap....
American Libraries

Go back to the Top

AL Live

ALA News

Emerging Leaders of 2013
ALA has selected 56 individuals (PDF file) to participate in its 2013 class of Emerging Leaders. Instituted under former ALA President Leslie Burger, the program is designed to enable library staff and information workers to participate in project planning workgroups, network with peers, gain an inside look into ALA structure, and have an opportunity to serve the profession in a leadership capacity early in their careers. The program kicks off with a daylong session during the 2013 ALA Midwinter Meeting in Seattle....
Office for Human Resource Development and Recruitment, Nov. 9

2013 Midwinter Meeting logoGet “News You Can Use” at Midwinter
Throughout the 2013 ALA Midwinter Meeting in Seattle, January 25–29, experts across library-related fields will offer the latest updates on policy, research, statistics, technology, and more, based on new research, surveys, reports, legislation/regulation, projects, beta trials, focus groups, and other data. For a complete list, visit scheduler sessions and click on “News You Can Use Updates” in the list of meeting types....
Conference Services, Nov. 13

The Midwinter Meeting scheduler is open
The 2013 ALA Midwinter Meeting scheduler is now open. The scheduler is a powerful tool to help you plan your conference attendance and keep up with events and opportunities as they’re added. Highlights include the ability to browse sessions in multiple ways, easy-to-create personal calendars, and tailored lists of recommendations....
Conference Services, Nov. 9

Green is one possibility2013 Midwinter T-shirt poll
Help us choose the colors of ALA’s Midwinter Meeting T-shirt. The 2013 T-shirt will once again be available in a men’s and a women’s cut. More than 650 people voted to select the colors of ALA’s Midwinter 2012 T-shirt—and it sold out quickly. With the 2013 Midwinter Meeting around the corner, it’s time to vote again. Check back on November 19 to see the winning colors....
Conference Services, Nov. 14

Outreach to Seattle’s homeless welcomed during Midwinter Day of Caring
Where do homeless people go after they visit the library? How do library workers best serve them? On January 25, about 100 ALA Midwinter Meeting–goers will have the opportunity to overcome stereotypes and barriers to service through a free hands-on introduction to Seattle’s varied organizations serving people who are homeless. Participation is free, but in-kind donations (backpacks, new or lightly-used outerwear, pillowcases, socks, sleeping bags, books, magazines, and paperbacks are welcome). Registration is open....
Conference Services, Nov. 13

“Let’s Talk About It” webinar
For more than 30 years, hundreds of libraries across the country have engaged their communities by offering “Let’s Talk About It” reading and discussion programs. On December 12, Frannie Ashburn, a state-level coordinator for LTAI, will present a webinar, “Let’s Talk About It: The National Model for Scholar-Led Reading and Discussion,” that will provide how-to information about bringing this popular, five-part series to your library. Registration is open....
Public Programs Office, Nov. 13

News Know-how logoFunds available for the News Know-how initiative
Public libraries and library consortia are invited to apply for more than $50,000 in training and support in the News Know-how initiative that helps students in grades 10–12 learn skills that will help them distinguish fact from opinion, check news and information sources, and distinguish between propaganda and news. The program is funded by the Open Society Foundations. Proposals must be submitted by December 8....
Office for Intellectual Freedom, Nov. 9

Accreditation and the External Review Panel
Laura Dare writes: “It is important to make a distinction between the ALA Committee on Accreditation and the External Review Panel. The ERP is appointed by the COA to serve as its agent for the review to verify the assertions and evidence in the program presentation (self study) and to submit a report for the COA’s consideration. The ERP does not determine whether or not a program is in compliance with the standards and does not make or even recommend an accreditation decision.”...
Prism, Fall 2012

Belmont College qualifies for LSSC
The ALA–Allied Professional Association announced that it has completed an agreement with Belmont College’s fully online Library Paraprofessional Degree Program. This agreement will allow Belmont graduates who meet the established criteria to receive the LSSC (Library Support Staff Certification) designation....
ALA–Allied Professional Association, Nov. 9

Cover of Queue TipsStrategize your movie viewing
Offering a smorgasbord of carefully cultivated lists, Queue Tips: Discovering Your Next Great Movie by ALA Publishing’s Rob Christopher is a new suggestion guide that incorporates classic films with more obscure selections for a full array of watch-worthy movies. This all-in-one recommendation source includes capsule reviews; director, cast, and crew information; bits of trivia and quotable lines; and helpful tips on how to locate these and other intriguing movies....
ALA Huron Street Press, Nov. 9

Rob ChristopherRob Christopher discusses his favorite movies
In the just-released Queue Tips, ALA staffer and Chicagoist contributor Rob Christopher gives short synopses of some real cinematic gems and lumps them into neat chapters with titles like “Man <3 Sheep, Teen <3 1958 Plymouth Fury, and Seven Other Unusual Romances” or “Nine Westerns That Aren’t Westerns.” Chicagoist had the opportunity to ask one of its favorite film critics a few questions about the book and Christopher’s own film preferences....
Chicagoist, Nov. 14

Cover of Electronic Resource ManagementManaging your e-resources
E-resources now account for the bulk of materials spending in many libraries. Electronic Resource Management: Practical Perspectives in a New Technical Services Model, available through ALA Neal-Schuman, makes the case that technical services workflows need to make a corresponding shift toward e-centric models and highlights the increasing variety of e-formats that are forcing new developments in the field. Authors Anne C. Elguindi and Kari Schmidt use case studies to cover key topics....
ALA Neal-Schuman, Nov. 9

Cover of Information Services and Digital Literacy, by Isto HuvilaInformation services and digital literacy
Presenting a new approach for understanding how information services help and hinder people in becoming informed, Information Services and Digital Literacy: In Search of the Boundaries of Knowing by Isto Huvila scrutinizes the role of information services and digital literacies in the age of the social web. Huvila examines how interacting with information affects people’s actions, including the different behaviors toward knowledge exhibited by the born-digital or new user....
ALA Neal-Schuman, Nov. 13

Go back to the Top

Booklist Online banner

Booklist Online logo

Cover of Cold DaysFeatured review: Adult fantasy
Butcher, Jim. Cold Days. Nov. 2012. 496p. Roc, hardcover (978-0-451-46440-8).
Harry Dresden, the Chicago PI and professional wizard, has been having a pretty weird time of it lately. In 2012’s Ghost Story, Harry is trapped between life and death but on the trail of his own killer all the same; after discovering that killer’s shocking identity, he decides to let himself pass into death. But Queen Mab has other ideas, and that’s where the latest episode in the Dresden Files novels picks up the story. Mab, who has wanted Harry to be her hatchet man for a long time, has a job for him—several jobs, actually, a sort of shopping list of evil deeds, beginning with murder. Harry, basically a good man, doesn’t take killing lightly, especially when his intended victim happens to be immortal....

Hostile Questions logoHostile Questions is popular with authors
Margo Lanagan is the most recent addition to the roster of big-name authors who are willingly subjecting themselves to Booklist Books for Youth Senior Editor Dan Kraus’s weekly Hostile Questions interviews. Kraus wondered if authors are sick of politeness and launched the series in spring 2012 on the Booklist Online “Likely Stories” blog to find out. The sometimes surprising results offer a lively Monday read. Authors of all types—best-selling , high-profile, first-timers, midlist, youth, adult, romance, mystery, you name it—have been clamoring for the abuse....

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

Go back to the Top

Midwinter Meeting 2013

Seattle Update

Beecher's Handmade Cheese in Pike Place MarketBeecher’s Handmade Cheese
Kurt Beecher Dammeier opened Beecher’s Handmade Cheese, Seattle’s first artisanal cheese-maker, in 2003 in the heart of historic Pike Place Market at 1600 Pike Place. Prepare to wait in line at the shop, where you can watch the cheesemakers work and sample some of the award-winning cheeses. Consider buying their amazing mac and cheese or a gooey grilled-cheese sandwich, along with a wedge or two of whatever you decide is your favorite cheese. Its Flagsheep cheese took Best in Show at the 2012 American Cheese Society competition....
Take Part, Nov. 1; Beecher’s Handmade Cheese; Cheesy Chat with Pastoral, Oct. 31

Market Heritage Tour sign. Photo by Jennifer HendersonPike Place Market tours
The Public Market Tours are one-hour walking tours offering visitors an insider’s look at the oldest continuously operating farmer’s market in the United States. The tours take you inside the main thoroughfares of Pike Place Market, as well as the DownUnder where hidden treasures await. Enjoy the sights, smells, and sounds that make up the Soul of Seattle and learn what stinky onions had to do with the start of the market in 1907....
Public Market Tours

Back of the menu for Cyndy's Chalet Pancake and Steak House, 4715 25th Ave N.E.Seattle Public Library’s historic menu collection
Hanna Raskin writes: “The Seattle Public Library is slowly starting to digitize its collection of historic menus. Food historians currently have to visit the Central Library’s Seattle Room to learn what was served at the Dog House or Rosselini’s 610. But a library intern who this summer expressed interest in making the menus more accessible was given the go-ahead to put a small sampling of the menu collection online.”...
Seattle Weekly, Nov. 5

Meet Me at the Fair logoMeet me at the 1962 World’s Fair
Eight short radio features were produced for KBCS-FM in Seattle in May that included stories by former World’s Fair staff and visitors. “Meet Me at the Fair” was produced by 8th graders from the Denny International Middle School and Jack Straw Productions in celebration of the 1962 Seattle World’s Fair. You can listen to or stream all eight episodes on the JSP website....
Jack Straw Productions

Left to right: Dansko clog, Cicero by Franco Sarto, Skechers' Men’s Work: Exalt-Closer, and Tanya Shooties by Franco SartoThe best shoes for travel? Ask a flight attendant
Stephanie Rosenbloom writes: “Who better to, er, pump for shoe advice? Flight attendants choose their shoes based on a number of factors, including their individual budgets, foot problems, and the rules of their airline. Typically, that results in crew members rotating between two sets of shoes: a snappy-looking pair to wear in the terminal and a more sensible, affordable pair that they change into for the service portion of a flight. What follows are some of their favorite shoes and brands, ideas you can steal for your own weary soles.”...
New York Times, Aug. 29

Division News

Beyond Words logoAASL offers assistance to schools hit by Superstorm Sandy
AASL offers its support to its East Coast colleagues as recovery from the damage caused by Superstorm Sandy begins and encourages schools to apply for a Beyond Words disaster relief grant. The grant program, funded by the Dollar General Literacy Foundation, can be used to replace or supplement books, media, and library equipment in school libraries affected by natural disasters. More information can be found on the AASL Beyond Words website....
AASL, Nov. 9

AASL extends deadline for Superstorm Sandy libraries
AASL has extended the deadline for concurrent session proposals for its 16th National Conference to December 7, in consideration of school library professionals living in states impacted by Superstorm Sandy. AASL recognizes the difficulties faced by its East Coast colleagues due to the damage inflicted by the recent hurricane and wishes to allow those wanting to participate in an AASL national conference the time needed to submit a proposal....
AASL, Nov. 9

AASL 16th National Conference logoAASL’s national conference website launches
The website for the AASL 16th National Conference & Exhibition, “Rising to the Challenge,” to be held November 14–17, 2013, in Hartford, Connecticut, is now online. The website offers preliminary conference information including registration rates, preconference workshops, educational tours, general session speakers, and author events....
AASL, Nov. 13

Mike EisenbergLibraries and Online Learning symposium at Midwinter
Never has the partnership between libraries and learners been more important than in today’s online environment—from local public libraries to national and transnational digital public libraries, from primary schools to research universities. In the 2013 ALA Midwinter Meeting symposium, “Libraries and Online Learning: A Powerful Partnership” from ALCTS, attendees will learn to foster the strategic relationships possible. Mike Eisenberg (above) of the University of Washington Information School will keynote. Registration is open....
ALCTS, Nov. 13

Go back to the Top

Awards & Grants

Now is a perfect time to apply for a RUSA award
RUSA has many awards to offer—even for nonmembers—in the areas of reference, genealogy, business reference, adult services, readers advisory, resource sharing, and technology. The deadline for all nominations is December 15, with the exception of the BRASS Gale Cengage Learning Student Travel Award, which has a deadline of January 31. Details are on the RUSA awards page....
RUSA Blog, Nov. 1

Library trustee awards
United for Libraries is accepting applications for the ALA Trustee Citation and the United for Libraries/Gale Outstanding Trustee Grant. The ALA Trustee Citation recognizes public library trustees for distinguished service to library development, on the local, state, regional, or national level, or at a combination of levels. United for Libraries/Gale Outstanding Trustee Conference Grant of $850 enables public library trustees to attend the ALA Annual Conference. The deadline to apply for both is December 31....
United for Libraries, Nov. 13

Stavros Niarchos Foundation logoGreek foundation offers $750,000 for Sandy relief
The Stavros Niarchos Foundation announced on November 12 that it will grant $750,000 to assist relief and aid operations in those areas of New York City devastated the most by Superstorm Sandy. The funds will be directed to support local communities throughout Brooklyn, Queens, and Staten Island. The will go to organizations offering mental health services, food, restoration to affected areas, reconstruction of public libraries, and volunteer work. And Simon & Schuster is offering “any public or school library damaged by Hurricane Sandy a donation of 500 ‘best of’ titles in order to help in the restoration of their collections.”...
Greek Reporter, Nov. 12; Publisher’s Lunch, Nov. 12

Elissa MillerElissa Miller wins America Reads Spanish prize
Elissa Miller (right), associate director for collections at the District of Columbia Public Library, was named Librarian of the Year by America Reads Spanish. The award was announced at the Liber 2012 International Book Fair in Barcelona, Spain, October 2–4. The ARS prize is given to an American librarian who during the current year has promoted Spanish books and reading in the United States, increased the Spanish holdings of a library, and worked to disseminate the Spanish language in the United States....
District of Columbia Public Library, Oct. 31

Cover of Leonardo and the Last Supper, by Ross King2012 Governor General’s Literary Awards
The Canada Council for the Arts announced the 14 winners of the Governor General’s Literary Awards on November 13. The most significant literary award program in Canada, the GG’s are awarded in both English and French in seven categories: fiction, poetry, drama, nonfiction, children’s literature (text and illustration), and translation. The publisher of each winning book receives $3,000 to support promotional activities. The winner for nonfiction in English was Ross King’s Leonardo and the Last Supper (Bond Street Books)....
Canada Council for the Arts, Nov. 13

Cover of Into the Silence2012 Samuel Johnson Prize for Non-Fiction
Canadian writer Wade Davis is the winner of the 2012 Samuel Johnson Prize for Non-Fiction for Into the Silence: The Great War, Mallory, and the Conquest of Everest (Bodley Head), a substantial and meticulously assembled account of George Mallory’s ill-fated attempt to scale the summit of Mount Everest. This annual prize of £20,000 ($31,750 US), now in its 14th year, is open to all nonfiction books written in English by writers of any nationality....
BBC News, Nov. 12

Cover of Le Sermon sur la Chute de Rome2012 Prix Goncourt
A novel that’s been described as a poetic Corsican epic has won France’s top literary prize, the Prix Goncourt. French writer and teacher Jérôme Ferrari was named winner of the venerable literary honor November 7 for his book Le Sermon sur la Chute de Rome (The Sermon on the Fall of Rome). First awarded in 1903, the Prix Goncourt recognizes “the best and most imaginative prose work of the year.”...
CBC News, Nov. 8

Cover of Notre-Dame du Nil2012 Prix Renaudot
Scholastique Mukasonga, a Rwandan author living in France, has won this year’s Prix Renaudot, a prestigious French literary award, for her novel Notre-Dame du Nil. The book is set in Rwanda long before the 1994 genocide against the Tutsis. It describes life in the isolated elite girls school Notre-Dame du Nil and the tensions between Hutu and Tutsi pupils that exist in this very closed community....
Rwanda Focus (Kigali), Nov. 7

Go back to the Top

Libraries in the News

Superstorm Sandy swamped NYU’s Ehrman Medical Library
Jennifer Howard writes: “When Hurricane Sandy struck New York City on October 30, powerful winds and higher-than-usual tides sent a 14-foot surge of water from the East River through New York University’s Langone Medical Center, shutting down the hospital, drowning thousands of mice and rats used in research, and swamping the Ehrman Medical Library. The floodwaters wiped out most of the library’s on-site print collections, along with study spaces and work areas, according to the library’s website.”...
Chronicle of Higher Education, Nov. 12; NYU Health Sciences Libraries, Nov. 12

Mr. Rocky Books in the Baisley Park branch library atriumRaccoon seeks refuge in Queens Library branch
A clever raccoon sought shelter from Superstorm Sandy in the atrium of the Baisley Park branch of the Queens (N.Y.) Library. The masked intruder was found curled up under a shrub when neighborhood volunteers arrived to clean up after the storm and quickly became the darling of the library. Children who visited the library fondly named him Mr. Rocky Books. They fed him, made him a house, and read to him through the window glass....
WNBC-TV, New York City, Nov. 8

Cover of In Our Mothers' House, by Patricia PolaccoUtah school district sued over In Our Mothers’ House
A Kaysville, Utah, parent sued the Davis School District on November 13, alleging her children’s First Amendment rights were violated by a school committee’s decision in May to remove a book about lesbian mothers from shelves of elementary school libraries. Students can read the picture book, In Our Mothers’ House by Patricia Polacco, only if they have a permission slip signed by parents. The American Civil Liberties Union of Utah is representing plaintiff Tina Weber in the case....
Salt Lake Tribune, May 31, Nov. 13

Memphis photo ID library card. Screenshot from WREG-TV newscastMemphis photo IDs prove popular
When the Memphis (Tenn.) Public Library started issuing new photo library cards, 2,466 people signed up for one. The city spent more than $60,000 for the equipment and software needed to produce the cards. The topic became a hot legal issue after the city said it could be used for voter identification. The state objected, but a court ruled the library ID is valid for voting. However, there is a petition before the Tennessee Supreme Court....
WREG-TV, Memphis, Nov. 9

Schaumburg Teen Place is now openNew teen space opening in Schaumburg library
A high-tech, state-of-the-art Teen Place will officially open November 24 in the Schaumburg Township (Ill.) District Library. The new 6,000-square-foot area features a digital production studio with green screen; advanced music-creation and video-production and editing software; two smart discussion rooms; a multipurpose room for programs, movies, gaming and performances; a digital whiteboard; high-tech collaboration stations; and 30 MacBook Pros, four iMacs, five iPads and (for gamers) four versions of PS3, Xbox 360 Kinect, and Wii consoles....
Chicago Tribune, Nov. 14

Niagara Falls hit with $100K budget reduction
Niagara Falls (N.Y.) Public Library officials are worried over their page in the mayor’s proposed budget. The system takes a $100,000 reduction in its budget from last year in the “disaster budget” that Mayor Paul Dyster presented in early November. The reduction in funds is particularly painful because of a $94,000 annual increase in the library system’s payroll that started last year. Library officials have circulated a petition....
Niagara Gazette, Nov. 8

Porter's Western Corral, 7245 E. Main St., Scottsdale, ArizonaScottsdale library helps preserve historic sights and sounds
The Scottsdale (Ariz.) Public Library recently went live with the Papago Salado Story Tour Collection, which features digitized historic photos of several of the city’s notable buildings, accompanied by audio files of locals telling stories about them. The collection got its start in 2011, when Arizona’s Papago Salado Association received a grant to record memories of historical buildings. The association envisioned a walking-tour program; now, using prominently posted QR codes, anyone visiting the buildings can use a mobile device to call up the collection of photos and MP3s....
Library Journal: The Digital Shift, Nov. 9

Presidential library plays a role in Spielberg film
Debbie Husar writes: “James Cornelius and other Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum staff played a key role in adding authentic touches to the new Steven Spielberg film Lincoln (to be released nationally on November 16) from the recorded sounds to the mood of Springfield and Lincoln’s world and costume details. Listen closely during the film and you might hear the sound of the dinner bell from Robert Lincoln’s dining room table in Chicago, with a similar sound and look to what his parents used.”...
Quincy (Ill.) Herald-Whig, Nov. 8

The Little Free Library outside Christ Church in Whitefish Bay features a steeple made from wood salvaged from a barn that was located along the Underground Railroad and was used to house slaves. Photo by Jeff RumageWhitefish Bay bans Little Free Libraries
The village board of Whitefish Bay, Wisconsin, decided to enforce its existing village code and ban Little Free Libraries from front yards across the village, not out of a hatred of literacy but because mailboxes and other structures are not allowed in front yards. With more than 4,000–5,000 Little Free Libraries erected in 34 countries, Whitefish Bay is the first municipality to restrict the structures....
Whitefish Bay (Wis.) Patch, Nov. 11

Baltimore document thief sentenced
The younger of two men who admitted to stealing a wealth of culturally significant documents was sentenced November 9 to a year and a day in federal prison, ending the prosecution of a case that began at the Maryland Historical Society and rattled archives, museums, and libraries across the continent. US District Judge Catherine C. Blake said the sentence reflected the valuable cooperation of Jason James Savedoff, the accomplice of master thief Barry H. Landau, in identifying and recovering thousands of stolen items. More on Landau and his special coat pockets here....
Baltimore Sun, Nov. 9; OUP Blog, Nov. 7

Ex-Gov. Blagojevich starts work in the prison library
Former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich has headed from the kitchen to the library at the Federal Correctional Institution in Englewood, Colorado, as he continues his 14-year sentence for corruption charges. Blagojevich’s former defense attorney Sam Adam Jr. said the ex-governor found washing dishes painfully boring and applied for a library gig. “He’s either in the library, or just about to get in the library,” Adam said....
WBBM-TV, Chicago, Nov. 10

Poppy petals found in Vimy Ridge memorial guidebookPoppy petals found in book from McMaster’s WWI collection
Special collections and archives librarians at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, have discovered the remnants of several poppy flowers preserved in a 1936 Guidebook of the Pilgrimage to Vimy and the Battlefields once owned by the wife of George Muir, a Canadian soldier who served in World War I. Associate Librarian Wade Wyckoff believes the poppies came from fields in Flanders. Library staff will eventually remove the flowers from the book and encapsulate them....
Hamilton (Ont.) Metro, Nov. 8

A Kenyan child reads a book brought to him by the Kenya National Library Services' mobile library in North Eastern Province. Photo by Bosire BonifaceCamel libraries improve literacy in Kenya
Bosire Boniface writes: “At a village square in Kalkach, Kenya, librarians Adan Abdi and Mohammed Adow command two camels to kneel down. Nearby under an acacia tree, a group of enthusiastic children and adults watch as the librarians unload wooden boxes full of books. Thousands of residents of North Eastern Province have benefited from the Camel Mobile Library, a service that was initiated by the Kenya National Library Services in 1996 to improve literacy in the region.”...
Sabahi Online, Nov. 7

Russian librarian fined for circulating extremist books
A librarian from the city of Novokuznetsk in the Kemerovo region of Russia was convicted of disseminating banned books and fined 2,000 rubles ($63 US). The 55-year-old chief librarian faced criminal proceedings after a reader requested a book from the federal list of extremist materials and she granted his request. Police did not disclose the book’s title or author, saying it might cause unnecessary interest in extremist literature....
RIA Novosti, Nov. 9

Go back to the Top


Cover of The Emerging Story of California Public LibrariesAn important new tool for California libraries
The California State Library has announced an exciting new tool for public libraries. The Emerging Story of California Public Libraries (PDF file) is a document designed to help libraries reframe their stories of why they are still relevant in today’s highly technological society. This document, or story map, was presented at the California Library Association Annual Conference in San José on November 3. The information in the story map is universal enough that it can be used as a template for use around the country....
California State Library, Nov. 9

New York Comprehensive Center logoPublic libraries as centers of lifelong learning
A new publication titled Public Libraries Informational Brief: Impact of Public Libraries on Students and Lifelong Learners (PDF file) demonstrates the importance of public libraries for all New Yorkers. Prepared by the New York Comprehensive Center in consultation with the New York State Education Department and the New York State Library, this document summarizes current research and reports about the impact of public libraries on learning in New York State and beyond....
Southern Tier Library System, Nov. 8

Outdated law could endanger your privacy
ALA joins with like-minded groups such as the Center for Democracy and Technology and the Electronic Frontier Foundation in a new campaign to reform the Electronic Communications Privacy Act. The campaign site is Vanishing Rights. ECPA was last updated in the mid-1980s and describes the lengths that government may go to in order to access private digital information....
District Dispatch, Nov. 12

Kevin SmithWhat lawmakers need to know about libraries
Kevin Smith (right) knows how to get library advocates revved up about meeting with policymakers. As the president-elect and legislative coordinator of the Virginia Library Association, Kevin uses his political expertise and messaging know-how to advocate effectively for libraries every year during ALA’s National Legislative Day. Here he shares some tips with the Washington Office....
District Dispatch, Nov. 12

Canadian copyright reform bill takes effect
Michael Geist writes: “On November 7, most of Bill C-11 (PDF file), the copyright reform bill, took effect, marking the most significant changes to Canadian copyright law in decades. While there are still some further changes to come, all the consumer-oriented provisions are now active, as well as a digital interlibrary loan provision.” However, the digital lock rules are now also in effect, meaning that breaking DRM on your legitimate purchased copy for your own personal use is now just as illegal as downloading a free copy off a torrent site....
Michael Geist, Oct. 31, Nov. 7; TeleRead, Nov. 8

Go back to the Top

Tech Talk

How to deter password hackers
Nicole Perlroth writes: “Chances are, most people will get hacked at some point in their lifetime. The best they can do is delay the inevitable by avoiding suspicious links, even from friends, and manage their passwords. Unfortunately, good password hygiene is like flossing—you know it’s important, but it takes effort. Here are some tips.” Readers responded with even more suggestions....
New York Times, Nov. 7, 9

Google AnalyticsAnalytics tools librarians should know about
Ellyssa Kroski writes: “Analytics tools are an invaluable way to show the ROI of marketing campaigns, popularity and usability of website content, value of blog posts, social media influence, and much more. If you haven’t been taking advantage of these free analytics tools for your library or organization, here’s your chance to check them out.”...
iLibrarian, Nov. 9

Windows locked file error messageHow to delete, move, or rename locked files
Chris Hoffman writes: “Windows won’t allow you to modify files that open programs have locked. If you try to delete a file and see a message that it’s open in a program, you’ll have to unlock the file (or close the program). In some cases, it may not be clear which program has locked a file—or a background process may have locked a file and not terminated correctly. You must unlock the stubborn file or folder to modify it. Here are a few ways to do that.”...
How-To Geek, Nov. 13

StayInvisible logoStayInvisible analyzes your online privacy
How anonymous are you when browsing online? If you’re not sure, head to StayInvisible, where you’ll get an immediate online privacy test revealing what identifiable information is being collected in your browser. The site displays the location (via IP address) and language collected, possible tracking cookies, and other browser features that could create a unique fingerprint of your browser and session....
Lifehacker, Nov. 14

Everything you need to know about printing emails
Saikat Basu writes: “I really don’t advocate printing emails for the simple reason of saving paper and protecting trees. The email in bits and bytes is far more permanent than anything printed out. But yes, there are situations when you have to print out emails. You might need to submit it as a physical document. You might want to have a physical receipt as a backup. So, in the off-chance that you deny yourself a paperless existence and want to print out emails, do it well. Here’s a little primer on everything you need to know.”...
MakeUseOf, Nov. 14

Screenshot from the Google Fiber videoGoogle Fiber finally launches
Following months of building a new infrastructure from the ground up, Google has officially started connecting homes in the Kansas City, Kansas, area to its new lightning-fast Google Fiber network. The first neighborhood to receive Google Fiber is Hanover Heights. Google is installing fiber optic cables into homes via a fiber jack, which converts the optical signal into data your computer can understand. It then gets online when the network box is plugged in to provide fast speeds and built-in Wi-Fi. Watch the video (1:50)....
Mashable, Nov. 13; Google Fiber Blog, Nov. 13

Embedded files in PDF/A
Butch Lazorchak writes: “A lot of hopes and dreams have been poured into the idea of ‘one preservation tool to rule them all,’ and many people, both inside and outside of the preservation community, have come to think of the archival version of the widely used PDF as this single solution. However, a close examination of the tool shows that, while it’s useful and valuable for many things, it is not the only answer for long-term archiving. This can’t be stated often enough, especially as awareness grows around the October release of the latest version of the PDF/A specification.”...
The Signal: Digital Preservation, Nov. 13

Blurred photo10 tips for troubleshooting your digital camera
Jim Fisher writes: “Chances are you have a digital camera in your arsenal of gadgets, but it’s less likely that you’re a professional photographer or camera technician. I’ve been shooting for the better part of a decade and am often approached by friends, family, and the occasional stranger on the street for photographic advice. These tips address some of the more common issues that I’ve seen over the years—hopefully they’ll help you get the most out of your camera and to tame it when it misbehaves.”...
PC Magazine, Nov. 8

Lightroom's photo-import featureHow to organize your photos
Michael Muchmore writes: “If you’re serious about digital photography, or just want to be able to find, share, and protect your best images easily, you need a workflow. Sure, some people just snap away on their phone or point and shoot, and show the photos to whoever’s around. Pro and prosumer photographers usually take a more structured approach, involving a workflow that includes organized file naming, tagging, and rating. We’ll discuss the main steps in photo workflow using three different levels of software.”...
PC Magazine, Nov. 12

Hacker values / library values
Nicholas Schiller writes: “With the current popularity of hackerspaces and makerspaces in libraries, library hack-a-thons, and hacking projects for librarians, it is clear that library culture is warming to the hacker ethic. This is a highly positive trend and one that I encourage more librarians to participate in. The reason I am so excited to see libraries encourage adoption of the hacker ethic is that hackers share several core values with libraries. Working together we can serve our communities more effectively.”...
ACRL TechConnect Blog, Nov. 13

Go back to the Top


3M Cloud Library logoRemember when? HarperCollins/Penguin edition
Christopher Harris writes: “Remember back when we as a profession pretty much lost it over the decision by HarperCollins to have ebooks expire after 26 loans? Ah, we were so young, so naive. If we had any clue about the limitations yet to come, we would have been a lot more welcoming of what now seems like not such a bad deal. After taking its books and going home about a year ago, the soon-to-be-merged Penguin is getting back in the game. Its new offer to libraries? A six-month embargo and a one-year expiration date on all ebooks regardless of the number of checkouts on the 3M Cloud Library.” Nate Hoffelder calls this a “crappy deal.”...
AL: E-Content, Nov. 12; The Digital Reader, Nov. 12

We want ebooks in librariesKansas State Library launches Facebook campaign
The Kansas State Library has launched a social media campaign against what it says are unfair practices to keep bestselling electronic books out of the hands of libraries and their patrons. Library officials have started a page on Facebook, “bringing attention to the titles publishers are refusing to sell [as] ebooks to libraries, price gouging, or limiting checkouts per copy purchased.”...
Wichita (Kans.) Eagle, Nov. 10

Student falls asleep on e-textbookMeasuring student engagement with e-textbooks
Alexandra Tilsley writes: “It has never been too hard to spot the student in class who didn’t do the assigned reading. But a new program could make identifying unprepared students easier and improve outcomes and retention. CourseSmart Analytics, which is currently being piloted at three colleges, tracks students’ engagement with their e-textbooks and allows professors to evaluate the usefulness of learning materials and to track student work.”...
Inside Higher Ed, Nov. 8

Daguerreotype of woman with her arm resting on a book, by Mathew Brady, 1850s? Harvard's daguerreotype collections could be offered to the DPLAHarvard to contribute special collections to DPLA
The Harvard University Library will share several collections with the Digital Public Library of America and become the first DPLA content hub. The library is exploring what collections it could contribute. Work remains to be done before a final decision is made about specific collections, but Harvard looks forward to making a number of its collections available. Among them, the following have already been digitized and could be available to the DPLA before its launch in April 2013....
DPLA blog, Oct. 31

Go back to the Top

2013 Midwinter Meeting logo

ALA Midwinter Meeting, Seattle, January 25–29.

Terry Brooks

Author Terry Brooks (above) is joining Ivan Doig, Gregg Olsen, and Ruth Ozeki to talk to Brad Hooper about the state of the novel and the influence of the Pacific Northwest on their work in the “ERT/Booklist Author Forum” on January 25. This will be the first of many opportunities to hear and see favorite authors up close at Midwinter in Seattle.

Project MUSE

Simmons GSLIS

Midwest Tape

Library Worklife

Hobbit poster

Invite readers on an epic journey at your library with this exclusive Hobbit poster. Prepare for December 14, when audiences will be plunged once again into a world of spellbinding mystery, with The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. Inspired by J. R. R. Tolkein’s masterpiece The Hobbit and directed by Academy Award–winning director Peter Jackson, the film is the first in a trilogy that takes place 60 years before The Lord of the Rings. The unlikely hero Bilbo Baggins, played by Martin Freeman, is joined by Ian McKellen as Gandalf the Grey, Richard Armitage as Thorin Oakenshield, and Cate Blanchett as Galadriel. NEW! From ALA Graphics.

Solutions and Services

Great Libraries of the World

National Art Library

National Art Library, Victoria and Albert Museum, London, UK. The library was founded in 1837 as the Library of the Schools of Design, based at Somerset House. It moved to the site of the South Kensington Museum in 1857, which was renamed the Victoria and Albert Museum in 1899. The library’s collections include those central to the work of the museum and include prints, drawings, paintings, furniture and woodwork, textiles, dress and fashion, ceramics and glass, metalwork, sculpture, and Asian art and design. The library also functions as a public reference library as well as the museum’s curatorial department for the art, craft, and design of the book.

National Library of Wales. Photo by Dylan Moore, used CC BY-SA 3.0

National Library of Wales, Aberystwyth, UK. Established by royal charter in 1907, this neoclassical library was built by architect Sidney Greenslade and first occupied in 1916, although the central block was not completed until 1937. It houses many rare books and manuscripts, such as the first book printed in Welsh (Yn y lhyvyr hwnn, 1546), the first Welsh translation of the complete Bible by William Morgan in 1588, the Black Book of Carmarthen written around 1250, and a manuscript of the works of Geoffrey Chaucer. The library’s extensive National Screen and Sound Archive includes music and manifestations of the spoken word relevant to Wales.

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. Some will be featured in The Whole Library Handbook 5, edited by George M. Eberhart, which is scheduled for publication in 2013 by ALA Editions. There is also a Great Libraries of the World Pinterest board.

JobLIST Direct ad

Career Leads from
JobLIST logo

Director of Strategic Communication, Purdue University Libraries, West Lafayette, Indiana. Provides communication counsel to leadership of libraries to advance institutional priorities among diverse and numerous audiences. Creates, maintains, and implements a strategic communication plan and program. Instructs and informs faculty and staff on internal and external communication policies and procedures. Participates in and helps formulate communications and presentations to key constituents, inside and outside the university. Establishes guidelines, in consultation with libraries administration and managers, for official libraries, copyright office, and press communication in traditional and social media. Manages and monitors their continued delivery and evolution....

Find JobLIST on Facebook

Follow JobLIST on Twitter

@ More jobs...

Digital Library of the Week

National Republican Grant and Wilson Campaign Song-Book, 1872. Ninety-six page soft-cover book contains political song lyrics promoting the 1872 Republican Party ticket and a cover portrait of U.S. Grant

Cornell University’s Political Americana Collection consists of approximately 5,500 presidential promotional and commemorative items dating from 1789 to 1980. The collection contains political materials in a variety of formats, including cartoons, prints, and posters; lapel buttons, ribbons, textiles, hats, and other costume items; ballots, broadsides, leaflets, and other ephemera; pamphlets and other formal publications; sheet music and songbooks; and a variety of three-dimensional items. The majority of the collection was donated to Cornell by private collector Susan H. Douglas between 1957 and 1961. Elections from 1832 to 1960 are particularly well represented.

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, Check out our Featured Digital Libraries Pinterest board.

Noted and Quoted

“I’m definitely turned on by libraries especially now that they’re so exotic in our society. Going to the library these days is like going to the jungle—there is no other human in there. Bring back the library!”

—Singer-songwriter Rufus Wainwright, discussing his library-themed music video “Out of the Game” (3:54) with actress Helena Bonham Carter, on RTÉ Ten, Nov. 8.

@ More quotes...

Enjoy our latest content

Healing Nature of Vietnam Veterans Memorial Thirty Years Later

Hand touching the Vietnam War Memorial

Laura Moriarty: 'I'm so grateful for libraries and librarians' (video)

Libraries Promote Use of E-books

Celebrating the 'Etceteras' of the World—Newly Discovered Photography of Vivian Maier

Popular Oak Ridge Boys Reflect Southern Gospel Movement that Helped Create Elvis and Patsy Cline

Join Us on Facebook Join Us on Facebook

Subscribe to our

at your library logo


Dec. 6–7:
International Summit of the Book,
Thomas Jefferson Building, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.

Dec. 10:
The Artist’s Voice and Vocabulary in Picture Books,
program and gallery tour of the permanent collection, Museum of American Illustration, 128 East 63rd St., New York City. Sponsored by the Society of Illustrators.

Dec. 11:
Hot Topics in Big Data: What You Need to Know Now,
workshop, Mumford Room, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C. Cosponsored by Fedlink, CENDI (Commerce, Energy, NASA, and Defense Information), and the National Federation of Advanced Information Services.

Dec. 12:
Care and Preservation of Audiovisual Collections,
program, Rosenbach Museum and Library, Philadelphia. Sponsored by Conservation Center for Art and Historic Artifacts.

Dec. 12:
Connecting the Dots: Constellations in the Linked Data Universe,
webinar. Sponsored by the National Information Standards Organization.

Jan. 15–17:
Digital Book World,
Annual Conference, Hilton Hotel, New York City. “Opportunity. Innovation. Success.”

Feb. 8:
Online Northwest 2013,
Conference, CH2M Hill Alumni Center, Oregon State University, Corvallis.

Feb. 11–14:
Annual Conference, Forum, University of Illinois at Chicago.

Feb. 12–15:
2nd International Conference on Academic Libraries,
Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University, Delhi, India. “Academic Library Services through Cloud Computing: Moving Libraries to the Web.”

Feb. 24–26:
National Federation of Advanced Information Services,
Annual Conference, Hyatt at the Bellevue, Philadelphia. “In Search of Answers: Unlocking New Value from Content.”

Mar. 20–21:
Library Technology Conference,
Macalester College, St. Paul, Minnesota.

Apr. 8–9:
Computers in Libraries,
Annual Conference, Hilton Washington, D.C. “Evolving in New Directions.”

Apr. 17–19:
International Conference on Information Science and Information Literacy, University of Sibiu, Romania.

May 15–17:
Ohio Valley Group of Technical Services Librarians,
conference, Eastern Kentucky University, Richmond. “Meeting Challenges, Leading Change.”

@ More...

Contact Us
American Libraries Direct

ALA logo

AL Direct is a free electronic newsletter emailed every Wednesday to personal members of the American Library Association and subscribers.

George M. Eberhart
George M. Eberhart,

Beverly Goldberg
Beverly Goldberg,
Senior Editor:

Sanhita SinhaRoy
Sanhita SinhaRoy,
Managing Editor,
American Libraries:

Laurie D. Borman
Laurie D. Borman,
Editor and Publisher,
American Libraries:

Jennifer Henderson
Jennifer Henderson,
Contributing Researcher

To advertise in American Libraries Direct, contact:

Doug Lewis
Doug Lewis:

Katie Bane
Katie Bane:

Send news and feedback:

AL Direct FAQ:

All 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.

American Libraries
50 E. Huron St.
Chicago, IL 60611
ext. 4216

ISSN 1559-369X

Books & Reading

OCLC and Goodreads logosOCLC partners with Goodreads
OCLC has expanded its strategic partnership with Goodreads, the world’s largest site for readers and book recommendations, to help provide greater visibility for all libraries. The new agreement pledges to improve Goodreads members’ experience of finding fresh, new things to read through libraries. It will also provide libraries with a way to reach this key group of dedicated readers through social media. As a WorldCat traffic partner since 2007, Goodreads has sent more than 5 million web referrals to WorldCat....
OCLC, Nov. 9

World Book Night 2013 logo2013 selections for World Book Night
World Book Night is an international “celebration of books and reading” wherein volunteers give away books to those in their community who are not regular readers. Last year, over 80,000 people signed up to be book givers, and more than 2.5 million books were given away across the US and parts of Europe. Next year’s World Book Night has been scheduled for April 23, and today the list of giveaway books was announced. Find out how your library can participate....
Book Riot, Nov. 9

Cover of Citrus County, by John BrandonDefining novels of the Millennial generation
Millennials (sometimes also called Generation Y) are usually defined by demographers as the age cohort that was born starting in 1983 (perhaps a few years earlier). This generation has not yet turned 30, and unlike poets, mathematicians, or gymnasts, novelists don’t generally flower until after that. While the bulk of Millennial masterpieces are no doubt just now beginning to be written, here are the 10 best novels about their experiences so far....
TeleRead, Oct. 30

Cover of Almost Perfect, by Brian KatcherLGBTQ teens and their literature
Molly Wetta writes: “I am an unabashed fan of queer YA literature. This is perhaps partly due to the first young adult novel I read in high school: Hard Love by Ellen Wittlinger. I come back to these kinds of books again and again when looking for a good contemporary young adult read. My only problem? There’s simply not enough of them. It isn’t just LGBTQ kids who can benefit from an increased awareness and acceptance of queer characters. Many youth are wrongly identified by peers as queer due to stereotypes, so support and education benefits everyone.”...
YALSA The Hub, Nov. 9

Cover of The Dawn Patrol, by Don WinslowSurf’s up!
John Schoppert writes: “There’s something about diving into a surf mystery that quenches the soul, and I’ve finished a great one by Don Winslow called The Dawn Patrol. There are few things more potent in literature than accurately described physical endurance, and Winslow captures what it’s like to be held under water after a big-wave wipe-out. Surfing holds a place in the imagination that almost matches the power of catching a gnarly ride. Here’s some surf fiction worth considering when waiting for your next set to come in.”...
Booklist Online: Shelf Renewal, Nov. 8

Ursula K. Le Guin10 great authors we should stop pigeonholing
Emily Temple writes: “We read a great article at Slate about Ursula K. Le Guin (right) and the genre distinctions (or lack thereof) in her work. This article portends an even greater event, the publication of Le Guin’s new self-chosen best-of collection, The Unreal and the Real, later in November, so we’ve decided to take a look at authors who have found themselves neatly boxed and categorized by the collective consciousness—but shouldn’t be. Check out a few of the great authors we should all really stop pigeonholing.”...
Flavorwire, Nov. 4; Slate, Nov. 2

Cover of The Bohr Maker, by Linda Nagata20 essential books on the future of human evolution
Annalee Newitz writes: “Evolutionary theory teaches us that life never remains the same. It is constantly changing and adapting. So what might be the next stages in the evolution of humanity and our planet? Here are 20 books, both fiction and nonfiction, that try to answer that question. In The Bohr Maker, Linda Nagata imagines that our future evolution depends on how we’ll use strong nanotechnology to reshape our bodies and the environment.”...
io9, Nov. 12

International Summit of the Book, Dec. 6-7LC to host first International Summit of the Book
The Library of Congress on December 6–7 will host the first International Summit of the Book, a gathering of leaders in academia, libraries, culture, and technology to debate and discuss the powerful and crucial form of information transmittal—the book. The summit will take place in the Coolidge Auditorium of the library’s Thomas Jefferson Building. Keynote speeches and panels throughout the event are free and open to the public. Registration is required....
Library of Congress, Nov. 9

UK and US covers for Chad Harbach's The Art of FieldingWho has better book covers? US or UK?
Gabe Habash writes: “During a stop at Dublin’s Hodges Figgis bookshop, I was struck by two things as an American reader. One: Most UK paperbacks have cheap binding. Two: The covers of most books on the other side of the Atlantic differ drastically from what we see in the States. With the exception of Penguin Classics and a few other publishers that are in both markets, a trip through a UK bookstore is an altogether different experience. Here are 10 books, UK on the left and US on the right. Which do you prefer?”...
Publishers Weekly: PWxyz, Nov. 8

Take the Guardian’s kid-lit library quiz
It’s time to prove just how much you love your library with this quiz. Do you know stacks about the subject—or are you a stranger to your shelves? The quiz involves libraries in children’s literature....
The Guardian (UK), Oct. 26

LOTR Project TimelineMaps of Middle Earth
Richard Byrne writes: “Earlier I shared some maps of Middle Earth from Google Maps Mania that are built on the Google Maps API. Keir Clarke added a comment with a link to the LOTR Project’s Middle Earth Timeline (right), which is a combination of a timeline and a map. Each event in the timeline is directly linked to a location on the map. Click on any event in the timeline to see where it took place in Middle Earth.”...
Free Technology for Teachers, Nov. 9; Google Maps Mania, Apr. 25

YA authors on PinterestPining for Pinterest
Laura Perenic writes: “As a self-confessed book-cover judger, displays of jacket art and themed book displays make my mental taste buds water. Imagine my delight when I realized that Pinterest, in addition to having loads of other content, is a veritable smorgasbord of fiction suggestions to please my YA palate. As a fan of an author’s work, you can follow their page, boards, and pins for the latest news. Many teen authors use Pinterest to reach their audience; YA Highway has a compiled list.”...
YALSA The Hub, Nov. 12

Go back to the Top

Tips & Ideas

Vimeo/YouTube brand revisioning by Graham Smith, used CC BY-ND-NC 3.0YouTube or Vimeo: Which is better for library marketing?
Ned Potter writes: “Video is a pretty essential format for marketing your library these days, and can be done surprisingly cheaply and easily. If you’ve produced your videos—tutorials, advertising, virtual tours, or whatever—then where do you put them to maximize their impact? So what are the differences between the big two video sharing sites, YouTube and Vimeo, and how should they play in your marketing choices?”...
The Library Marketing Toolkit, Nov. 9

"Penguins Love Books Too" was the winning design in the 3rd-5th grade category by Amelia FortgangSan Francisco picks its library card designs
San Franciscans have voted for penguins, butterflies, and sunshine to grace their library cards. The five winning designs in the San Francisco Public Library’s contest to create new library cards were recently unveiled. More than 14,500 people weighed in online at ImproveSF, where 3,500 designs in five different age groups were submitted. The library issues about 60,000 new cards every year....
City Insider, Nov. 11

Screenshot from Auraria Library's Books & Boards promotionAuraria Library skates its way to contest victory
Gale, part of Cengage Learning, has announced that Auraria Library in Denver is the winner of its “Out-of the-Box” marketing contest, which called on librarians to submit their risky but actionable marketing ideas for a chance at $5,000. The winning campaign idea, Books & Boards (1:47), capitalized on the local explosion of skateboarding as a chance to rebrand the library and connect with students. Five other finalists were also named and their ideas included everything from custom-printed toilet paper to “tagging” local neighborhoods with temporary graffiti....
Gale Cengage, Nov. 13

I Love My School Librarian contestHertz announces “I Love My School Librarian” contest
Hertz Furniture, a New Jersey–based supplier of school and office furniture, has announced an “I Love My School Librarian” contest. Students, teachers, principals, and parents are invited to recognize a school librarian and enter them into the competition by completing an online form and writing a short paragraph on “why you love your school librarian.” The contest runs through December 28....
Hertz Furniture, Nov. 12

Cover of Lola Loves StoriesKansas reads to preschoolers
Roughly 6,000 copies of the children’s book Lola Loves Stories by Anna McQuinn have been distributed throughout Kansas and are being read to Kansas preschoolers during Kansas Reads to Preschoolers Week, November 11–17. The Kansas State Library’s eighth annual one-book/one-state reading initiative has the goal that every Kansas child ages 0–5 will be read to during the week....
Kansas State Library, Nov. 9

Cover of Curious George Family Activity BookletCurious George on PBS
Curious George is a little monkey with an insatiable curiosity. The Curious George series on PBS takes full advantage of children’s natural curiosity, using George to motivate them to expand their own investigations of the world. George’s memorable adventures offer the perfect vehicles for introducing preschoolers to key concepts in science, engineering, and math. This colorful activity booklet (PDF file) can be used as a handout or the basis of children’s programming in the library....
PBS Parents

Holly GoFlightlyAnimals as teachers
Caroline McKinley writes: “Our lovebird, Holly GoFlightly (right), charms many of the children coming into the Hampton Bays (N.Y.) Library, and that is not an easy feat. There is evidence that associating with animals enhances a child’s overall learning beyond their ABCs. It is not difficult to integrate the appreciation of animals into a library’s programming. The national campaign ‘No Child Left Inside,’ is one of many ways to arrange walks through a nearby nature preserve. You can then coordinate a storytime or discussion around some inspiring books similar to the ones listed here.”...
ALSC Blog, Nov. 14

IT people: Children’s librarians in disguise?
Melanie A. Lyttle writes: “In the tradition of My Father the Dog by Elizabeth Bluemle, I offer this observation. I’m pretty sure library IT people are children’s librarians in disguise. Unfortunately, I do tend to agree with many of my colleagues that it can be difficult to communicate with the IT people that populate libraries. However, I didn’t realize until I had the privilege of working closely with an IT person on several projects that there are similarities between us as well. I just hadn’t looked hard enough.”...
ALSC Blog, Nov. 10

Close-up of the Thanksgiving Expression Wall at the Ohio State University at Marion/Marion Technical College LibraryExpress yourself
Betsy Blankenship writes: “I am always on the lookout for easy marketing and outreach activities that take little effort and staff time. In November 2011, as I was reading messages on an email discussion list one day, someone mentioned using an Expression Wall as an outreach tool to students. Typically it involves allowing students to post responses to a posed question, a particular topic, or simply a conversation starter on a wall of some sort. I chose to offer a Thankful Wall; it was close to Thanksgiving and it had been a tough year in many ways.”...
Programming Librarian blog, Nov. 13

Fred V. Williams, The Hop-Heads of San Francisco (San Francisco: Walter N. Brunt, 1920)The LSD library goes to Harvard
Stephen J. Gertz writes: “The Ludlow–Santo Domingo (LSD) Library of rare books, the world’s first, largest, and most distinguished collection of the literature of psychotropic drugs, has been placed at Harvard’s Houghton Library on long-term loan after extended and highly sensitive negotiations with the family of the late Julio Mario Santo Domingo Jr. (1958–2009), the eldest son and scion to the fortune of his father, Columbian business magnate Julio Mario Santo Domingo (1923–2011) and omnivorous collector of books associated with the 1960s counterculture in the US and Europe.”...
Booktryst, Nov. 12

EveryLibrary: Making it happen
John Chrastka writes: “EveryLibrary is more than just an idea for voter outreach about libraries. It is an active organization with hundreds of supporters who want to see a better outcome for libraries at the ballot box. November 7 closed our first round of fundraising, awareness building, and organizing. I want to provide you with some insights on our growth and accomplishments in making this idea a reality.”...
EveryLibrary, Nov. 8

Personal disaster management
Michelle Kraft writes: “I live in a suburb of Cleveland, and we used to joke all the time that besides snowstorms there really weren’t any natural disasters to worry about. Wrong. Superstorm Sandy uprooted or split trees here, causing them to fall on power lines, houses, and across streets, leaving large areas of the Cleveland area without power for 6–7 days. I thought I would take a bit of my blogging time to share some things I learned while I was without power. This is primarily about personal prep for disasters.”...
The Krafty Librarian, Nov. 13

A portion of the first page of the Reading Abbey library catalogThe 12th-century Reading Abbey library catalog
Chantry Westwell writes: “A number of catalogs and book lists survive from the Middle Ages, but one of the most interesting is a 12th-century library catalog from Reading Abbey (London, British Library MS Egerton 3031), one of the wealthiest Benedictine monasteries in medieval England, founded by King Henry I in 1121. If we wish to learn more about the monks’ daily lives, the library catalog is a great place to look.”...
British Library: Medieval and Earlier Manuscripts Blog, Nov. 12

LeRoy Wiley GreshamLC exhibits rare Civil War–era boy’s diary
The little-known diary of LeRoy Wiley Gresham (right) has never been published before, and the Library of Congress is featuring selected pages as part of an extensive display of its voluminous Civil War material to mark the 150th anniversary. (LC has launched a blog to accompany the exhibit.) It is the saga, in seven volumes, of a precocious, delicate boy who was a voracious consumer of books and newspapers, but who was often confined to a special wagon that was pulled about town by slaves. Crippled by a broken left leg years before and tormented by a host of other infirmities, LeRoy is exposed to a full range of Victorian remedies that offer little relief....
Washington Post, Nov. 8; Voices of the Civil War

Making Find A Grave better
Michele Simmons Lewis writes: “I have received many emails asking about how to make corrections to Find A Grave. This post will show you what sort of corrections you can make and how to make them. I think that everyone who uses Find A Grave should also take the time to help make it better. If you find an error on an individual memorial, the first thing you do is hit the Edit tab and send a message to the creator explaining what is wrong.”...
Ancestoring’s Ask A Genealogist, Nov. 10

The Great Yaquis snake-oil liniment, ad from 190310 questions to distinguish real science from fake science
Emily Willingham writes: “Pseudoscience is a shaky set of ideas and practices, often related to medicine, that lack sufficient evidence. What science consumers need is a cheat sheet for people to use when considering a product, book, therapy, or remedy. Here are the top 10 questions you should always ask yourself—and answer—before shelling out money for anything, whether it’s anti-aging cream, a diet fad program, books purporting to tell you secrets your doctor won’t, or jewelry items containing magnets.”...
Forbes, Nov. 8

What every cataloger needs to know about character encoding
Jonathan Rochkind writes: “Okay, I tricked you, I’m not going to tell you myself, I’m going to direct you to this very useful blog post. If you manage metadata that includes diacritics, non-Latin characters, or anything else that’s not ASCII, or if you have to deal with MARC-21 records in the MARC-8 encoding, then you need to know about character encoding.”...
Bibliographic Wilderness, Nov. 12; Kunststube, Nov. 5

Girls read in the Villa Serrano library, BoliviaBiblioWorks builds libraries in Bolivia
In 2004,—a leading supplier of used, rare, and out-of-print books—recognized a need for a library in a rural indigenous community in Bolivia. With the support of its strategic partners, was able to fund the construction of the first rural library ever built in one of the most impoverished regions of Bolivia, La Biblioteca Villa Zamora. Since 2005, its nonprofit foundation in Asheville, North Carolina, BiblioWorks, has established eight community libraries in rural areas outside Sucre....

The CatCaseThe CatCase: Bookcase and cat playground
Produced by Urban CatDesign, the CatCase combines a bookcase and a cat tree in one. It stores books and DVDs while serving as the ideal playground for your cat. Inside the CatCase your cat can sleep or jump the stairs from shelf to shelf in order to finally reach the top level, where it has a comfortable lookout. Cats feel best high up with a clear view in all directions; this is exactly what the CatCase offers....
Design rulz

Go back to the Top

ALA Publishing Logo

Sign up to receive AL Direct every Wednesday here.
American Libraries Magazine, 50 East Huron Street, Chicago, IL 60611