Federal funding for libraries.

American Library Association • May 23, 2017

For daily ALA and library news, check the American Libraries website or subscribe to our RSS feed.

Facebook icon Twitter icon Pinterest icon YouTube icon RSS icon

ALA statement on the Trump administration budget

Workers at the Government Publishing Office prepare the 2018 budget to be bound in Washington

In response to the Trump administration’s 2018 budget proposal released May 23, ALA President Julie Todaro issued a statement: “The administration’s budget is using the wrong math when it comes to libraries. To those who say that the nation cannot afford federal library funding, the ALA, American businesses, and millions of Americans say emphatically we cannot afford to be without it. In 2013, 94% of Americans said that having a public library improves the quality of life in a community.”...

AL: The Scoop, May 23; Reuters, May 23; White House, May 22; Washington Post, May 23

Sustainability on the other side of the stacks

Amy Brunvand, Sustainability in Libraries

Amy Brunvand writes: “About a year ago I was talking to the chief sustainability officer at the University of Utah about my work as a librarian, and she made a surprising suggestion: ‘Why don’t you come work with us for a while?’ Why not? I hadn’t previously thought of embedding myself in the Sustainability Office, but the idea seemed brilliant. One of the unique aspects of campus sustainability is the way it blurs the line between academic disciplines and real-life practice.”...

AL: The Scoop, May 22

Drug tourists and overdose drills are part of the job

McPherson Square branch of the Free Library of Philadelphia

Mike Newall writes: “I visited the century-old McPherson Square branch (right) of the Free Library of Philadelphia because I’d heard its staff was the first in the city to learn how to administer the lifesaving overdose antidote Narcan. They have been using the spray so often that they can tell the type of overdose simply by the sound coming from the lavatory. Since the opioid crisis began surging throughout the country last summer, the library staff has noticed new settlers on their lawn: drug tourists, they call them.”...

Philadelphia Inquirer, May 21
ALA News

A new instructional materials bill for Florida

Rep. Scott Plakon (R-Longwood) voted for HB 989

Kate Lechtenberg writes: “The Florida legislature has passed a bill that could have dramatic consequences for Florida students’ and teachers’ intellectual freedom, despite opposition from the Florida Library Association. Proponents of HB 989, which currently awaits the governor’s signature, claim that the bill improves transparency and gives parents a stronger voice in their children’s education. But we must ask questions about these claims. I found many reasons to question both the law itself and Florida politicians’ understanding of the issue.”...

Intellectual Freedom Blog, May 22; Tampa Bay (Fla.) Times, May 5; Florida Library Association, May 1

Gov. Edwards visits LSU’s Middleton Library

LSU’s Troy H. Middleton Library

Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards joined a group of state legislators on May 18 to tour Louisiana State University’s Troy H. Middleton Library, long seen as a symbol of just how bad conditions have gotten on campuses after years of neglect in the state’s construction spending. What they saw: a basement that floods so regularly a vacuum is kept on hand for when it rains, floors that are patched and pocked, and cracked wallpaper–covered rooms that are awash in yellow from the buzzing fluorescent lights....

Baton Rouge (La.) Advocate, May 18

Drag queen story hour in New York

Drag Queen Story Hour with Harmonica Sunbeam

Una LaMarche writes: “Story hour had never looked so colorful. The reader at the Hudson Park branch of the New York Public Library in Greenwich Village stood well over six feet tall, her height aided by six-inch heels on purple patent leather boots. Her outfit was an oxymoronic neon camouflage bodysuit and a purple tutu. ‘My name is Harmonica Sunbeam,’ the reader said, in a voice used to loud rooms. As a warm-up, she had the children sing ‘This Land Is Your Land’ and then march vigorously in place.”...

New York Times, May 19

This is what an information professional looks like

Cover of This Is What a Librarian Looks Like

Claire Fallon writes: “Librarians hold a deceptively humble, yet powerful, role: They offer guidance to rich worlds of literacy and scholarship. Who our librarians are, then, actually matters a great deal. In Kyle Cassidy’s new book This Is What a Librarian Looks Like, the photographer reveals portraits of hundreds of librarians, sharing both their sunny faces and their thoughts on the value of libraries. The result: a colorful tapestry of men and women of all ages, races, and ethnicity.”...

HuffPost, Apr. 14, May 17
ALA Annual Conference

2017 Green Carnation Prize

Cover of How to Survive a Plague

David France’s insider account of the AIDS epidemic, How to Survive A Plague: The Story of How Activists and Scientists Tamed AIDS (Picador), has been named the unanimous winner of the 2017 Green Carnation Prize. First released as a film in 2012, How to Survive a Plague was dedicated to France’s partner Doug Gould, who died of AIDS-related pneumonia in 1992. It went on to be nominated for an Oscar for best documentary in 2013. Now in its seventh year, the prize, with the support of Foyles bookstores, honors the best writing by an LGBTQ author in the United Kingdom....

The Bookseller (UK), May 22

New leadership for ProQuest

Matti Shem Tov

Marshall Breeding writes: “The board of directors of ProQuest has announced that Matti Shem Tov (right), president of Ex Libris, will assume leadership of the entire ProQuest organization, succeeding current CEO Kurt Sanford. This change comes one year and four months after the acquisition of Ex Libris, a move that significantly expanded the position of ProQuest as a content, services, and technology company for libraries.”...

ALA TechSource blog, May 23; ProQuest, May 23
Latest Library Links

Twitter’s new privacy policy

Twitter privacy settings

Nancy Messieh writes: “Twitter recently introduced an updated privacy policy announcing changes to how it collects user data and delivers advertising into your timeline. So what does the update mean and what should you do about it? If you haven’t logged in to Twitter since the changes were announced, you’ll see a notification to review your settings. If you’ve already dismissed the message, you can access these settings again by going to your Personalization and Data page.”...

MakeUseOf, May 23; Twitter Blogs, May 17

How to price 3D printing service fees

A 3D printer in action at the Health Sciences and Human Services Library, University of Maryland, Baltimore

Bohyun Kim writes: “Many libraries today provide 3D printing services. But not all of them can afford to do so for free. While free 3D printing may be ideal, it can jeopardize the sustainability of the service over time. Nevertheless, many libraries tend to worry about charging service fees. In this post, I will outline how I determined the pricing schema for our library’s new 3D printing service. But let me begin with libraries’ general aversion to fees.”...

ACRL TechConnect, May 22

Medieval book curses

The sort of fate medieval librarians wished on book thieves: Detail of a miniature illustrating Gregory’s Homily 40, of a man with two demons in Hell, from Les Omelies Saint Grégoire pape, Low Countries (Bruges), 2nd half of the 15th century

Clarck Drieshen writes: “Have you ever lost, forgotten to return, or accidentally damaged a library book? During the Middle Ages, the fate of both your body and soul could have been at serious risk. Medieval librarians often added curses to their books upon those who did not return books or stole them from their libraries. These curses usually invoked God, suggesting that these punishments would be made effective with divine authority. Some book curses guaranteed an immediate, physical punishment.”...

British Library: Medieval Manuscripts Blog, May 23

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

Send news and feedback: aldirect@ala.org

Direct ad inquiries to: mstack@ala.org

AL Direct FAQ: americanlibrariesmagazine.org/al-direct

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.


AL Direct will not sell your email to outside parties, but your email may be shared with advertisers in this newsletter should you express interest in their products by clicking on their ads or content. If the advertisers choose to communicate with you by email, they are obligated to provide you with an opportunity to opt-out from future emails in compliance with the CAN-SPAM act of 2003. Read the ALA privacy policy.

American Libraries
50 E. Huron St.
Chicago, IL 60611
800-545-2433, ext. 4216

ISSN 1559-369X
ALA Publishing