American Library Association • November 14, 2014
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Another Story: Farewell, Internet Public Library

Internet Public Library logo

Joseph Janes writes: “Word has reached me that the Internet Public Library, which I wrote about in the last issue, will no longer be supported at the end of 2014. The news means that IPL will just miss making its 20th birthday next March 17 (the happy coincidence of my Irish heritage and a convenient Friday deadline). IPL started in a graduate seminar I led and then took on a life of its own, helped by many willing, kind, and generous hands along the way. Let me tell you three reasons why the initial project was so successful.”...

American Libraries column, Oct. 20, Nov. 13

Sen. Reid will move USA Freedom Act to a vote

Sen. Harry Reid

Joe Mullin writes: “On November 12, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev., right) took action to move the USA Freedom Act toward a debate and a vote. That’s a big turnaround from September, when Senate sources said passing the act ‘wasn’t a top priority.’ With Reid’s support, a vote could come as early as next week. Reid has filed for a cloture vote to end debate, which will require 60 votes. That will be the biggest hurdle.” ALA is asking librarians to call their senators in support of the bill, which would effectively end the government’s bulk collection of phone and internet call records....

Ars Technica, Nov. 13; ALA Office of Government Relations, Nov. 13

Sponsored Content

Seth Cayley

Punch authors revealed for the first time

Seth Cayley, Head of Research Publishing, Cengage Learning EMEA

In 2014 Gale, part of Cengage Learning, published the online Punch Historical Archive, containing every issue of the magazine. Although best known for its superb cartoons, the biting wit of Punch’s articles deserves wider recognition; full-text searching in the archive will allow researchers and students to explore the magazine in new ways.

Gale logoFor much of its life, the magazine’s articles were written anonymously. The mocking figure of “Mr. Punch” was mainly the public identity of the magazine, not its contributors. However, in reality, Punch was put together by a tight brotherhood of writers....

Read more


Amazon and Hachette resolve their dispute

Hachette and Amazon logos

Laura Hazard Owen writes: “Amazon and book publisher Hachette Book Group have finally reached a deal in the negotiations that have been going on since May. For months, Amazon removed preorders on Hachette titles, shipped them with delays, and would not discount them. When the new ebook terms take place in early 2015, ‘Hachette will have responsibility for setting consumer prices of its ebooks, and will also benefit from better terms when it delivers lower prices for readers.’ This sounds like the return of agency ebook pricing about two and a half years after the Department of Justice first sued Apple and publishers for conspiring to set ebook prices.”...

GigaOm, May 23, Nov. 13

Information literacy and research practices

Cover of Information Literacy and Research Practices

On November 12, ACRL released the third draft of its Framework for Information Literacy for Higher Education and called upon the community to provide additional feedback. Against this backdrop, this latest issue brief is particularly timely. In Information Literacy and Research Practices (PDF file), Nancy Fried Foster, Ithaka S+R’s senior anthropologist, demonstrates how “researchers in the wild” are adhering to many of the goals described in the draft Framework. Foster argues that the Framework “captures more realistically what information-literate people really do.”...

Ithaka S+R, Nov. 13; ACRL Insider, Nov. 12
Simmons SLIS

Privacy in the post-Snowden era

Privacy wordcloud

Mary Madden writes: “While Americans’ associations with the topic of privacy are varied, the majority of adults in a new survey (PDF file) by the Pew Research Center feel that their privacy is being challenged along such core dimensions as the security of their personal information and their ability to retain confidentiality. More than a year after contractor Edward Snowden leaked documents about widespread government surveillance by the NSA, some 43% of adults have heard ‘a lot’ about ‘the government collecting information about telephone calls, emails, and other online communications as part of efforts to monitor terrorist activity.’ But perhaps more striking is Americans’ lack of confidence that they have control over their personal information.”....

Pew Research Center, Nov. 12
ALA Midwinter Meeting

ALA at the Sharjah International Book Fair

ALA International Relations Office Director Michael Dowling being interviewed at the Sharjah International Book Fair in the UAE.

ALA’s largest international professional development event wrapped up November 13 in Sharjah, United Arab Emirates (UAE), with hundreds of librarians gathering at the Sharjah International Book Fair (SIBF) for the first SIBF/ALA Library Conference. Librarians from Afghanistan, Bahrain, Egypt, India, Iraq, Jordan, Malaysia, Nigeria, Oman, Palestine, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Syria, UAE, and other countries, attended the free two-day professional development and networking event; 425 pre-registered and around 400 signed up onsite....

AL: The Scoop, Nov. 14

Beginner’s electronics: 10 skills you need

Soldering an SMD capacitor

Kannon Yamada writes: “Many of us have never even touched a soldering iron—but making things can feel incredibly rewarding. There are some key skills you need when tackling electronics projects; whether you plan on fixing broken devices or assembling Arduinos, the right skills make the difference between rage and elation. Here’s a quick run-down of 10 of the most basic DIY electronics skills to help you get started.”...

MakeUseOf, Nov. 12

33 books to read, based on your favorite films

If you love Groundhog Day, try The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August by Claire North

Daniel Dalton writes: “If you love Groundhog Day, try The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August by Claire North. We join Harry August near the end of his 11th life, which has been exactly the same as the 10 before it. When he dies, he returns to the beginning and starts it all again. Nothing ever changes—until now. A small girl visits his bedside with a message, and August must learn how to change his life to prevent a future he can’t allow. Another: If you love Se7en, try The Treatment by Mo Hayder. For one of the most disturbing films of the last 20 years, a book that is one of the most disturbing ever written. Featuring grotesque murders and a genuinely unsettling plot involving pedophile rings and child abuse, The Treatment is not for the faint of heart.”...

Buzzfeed, Nov. 7

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