Protecting librarians from inappropriate patrons.

American Library Association • November 7, 2017
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Stop sexual harassment in your library

Katie McLain and Amanda Civitello

Anne Ford writes: “There was a time when Katie McLain (left), reference assistant at the Waukegan (Ill.) Public Library, had no idea what to say to patrons who acted inappropriately toward her. That time is over. How has McLain become so comfortable speaking out against sexual harassment? By working with her colleague Amanda Civitello (right) and their administration to make their library a place where such harassment isn’t tolerated, and where those who experience it are supported rather than ignored.”...

American Libraries Trend, Nov./Dec.

Leading the green revolution

Michigan State University librarian Eric Tans with the book debinding machine. Photo: Shelby Kroske/Michigan State University Libraries

Liz Granger writes: “Many librarians don’t worry about insects and rodents on the job. But when Michigan State University librarian Eric Tans (right) was approached by another department about starting a composting program, he fought to convince his administration that composting wouldn’t attract pests that would threaten library materials. As the school’s environmental sciences librarian, Tans participates in robust programming around recycling, composting, and deaccessioning books.”...

American Libraries feature, Nov./Dec.

Libraries and cloud storage

Another Story, by Joseph Janes

Joseph Janes writes: “What if libraries offered truly free, no-strings-attached cloud storage to their communities? That would provide security, privacy, permanence, and continuity—just the kind of foundation that creative works, particularly those of any sophistication, require. For all I knew, this was already happening, so I did some due diligence, searched for examples of public libraries offering free cloud-based storage, and came up empty. And I did read some terms-of-service agreements.”...

American Libraries column, Nov./Dec.

By the numbers: Native American Heritage Month

Images from National Native American Heritage Month website

Some statistics about tribal librarianship and service populations: 1990 was the year that President George H. W. Bush, at the request of Congress, issued a proclamation designating November as National American Indian Heritage Month. Similar proclamations and variations on the name—including Native American Heritage Month and National American Indian and Alaska Native Heritage Month—have been issued each year since 1994....

American Libraries Trend, Nov./Dec.
ALA Midwinter

New national library opens in Qatar

Maram al Mahmoud, Qatar National Library’s senior children’s librarian

Qatar’s new national library opened on November 7 in Doha’s Education City area. In addition to having the capacity to house more than one million books, the library offers computer terminals, music studios, 3D printers, and a stage for performances. It also proudly boasts a noisy section for children where the old rule of silence in the stacks no longer applies. The new library is part of Qatar’s effort to refocus its economy on knowledge and education....

Al Jazeera, Nov. 7

2017 World Fantasy Award winners

Cover of The Sudden Appearance of Hope, by Claire North

The 2017 World Fantasy Awards were announced November 5. Claire North won for best novel with The Sudden Appearance of Hope, along with Kij Johnson (The Dream-Quest of Vellitt Boe, for long fiction), G. V. Anderson (“Das Steingeschöpf,” for short fiction), and Jeffrey Ford (A Natural History of Hell, for collection), among others. This year’s ceremony was held in San Antonio, Texas, and honors the best in fantasy....

Book Riot, Nov. 6; World Fantasy 2017, Nov. 5
Latest Library Links

The Pico case: 35 years later

News coverage about the Pico case

April Dawkins writes: “Thirty-five years ago, the Supreme Court heard arguments in the only case to involve censorship in school libraries: Board of Education, Island Trees Union Free School District v. Pico (1982). The case was initiated because a conservative activist group, Parents of New York United, compiled a list of books they wanted removed from school libraries. The local school board chose to remove the books, referring to them as ‘anti-American, anti-Christian, anti-Semitic, and just plain filthy.’”...

Intellectual Freedom Blog, Nov. 7

Teaching research to preserve democracy

“The problem with quotes on the Internet is that it is hard to verify their authenticity.”—Abraham Lincoln

Angie Miller writes: “Our profession must move forward every day rooted in the belief that we can help our students develop into thoughtful, tolerant, critical thinkers and problem solvers. We need to believe that what we teach is essential for our students to become educated members of a greater community, and we need to understand that what we don’t teach sends implicit messages of priority to our children. So how do we weave this into our schools? We do what librarians know best: We teach research.”...

Knowledge Quest blog, Nov. 7

Academic journal publishing is broken

Locking articles away behind a paywall stifles access

Patrick Burns writes: “Access to journals is crucial for how researchers do their work. But few research libraries can afford all the journal subscriptions needed by all of their faculty for all occasions. As the dean of libraries at a state school, I contend that the economic model for academic journal publications is broken. As scholars are handicapped by limited access to the corpus of research in their fields, scientific progress is restricted and slows, and society ultimately loses.”...

The Conversation, Nov. 5

We mapped it so you don’t have to

Prisoner data in ArcGIS Online with custom tile layer from Mapbox as basemap

Emily McGinn and Meagan Duever write: “At the University of Georgia Libraries’ Willson Center Digital Humanities Lab, we often help faculty members and students create research projects using new digital technologies. This article tells how we have solved common mapping research questions using web tools (Google Fusion Tables, Carto, ArcGIS and its online component ArcOnline, and Neatline with Omeka), most of which are free and accessible to any user.”...

College & Research Libraries News 78, no. 9 (Oct.): 486–490, 524
ALA news releases

Debunking the USA Today librarian career story

The dying librarian stereotype

Samantha Mairson writes: “An article in USA Today,Careers: 8 Jobs That Won’t Exist in 2030,’ lumps together various jobs requiring varying levels of skill and education—including librarians—in a list of jobs with no future. The article appears to give career advice and indicates that professions like paperboys, cashiers, and librarians will soon be a thing of the past. So why does the dying librarian stereotype still exist? And why do publications like USA Today perpetuate it? Let’s find out.”...

Infospace, Nov. 6; USA Today, Oct. 13

A day in the life of a rock’n’roll librarian

Laura Maidens

Cara Giaimo writes: “The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, Ohio, is best known for its raucous and dramatic induction ceremonies. But it also has a quieter side: a library and archive full of research materials, artifacts, and memorabilia, and shelves and shelves of old records. Earlier in 2017, it advertised for a new librarian. After a long and rigorous interview process, 34-year-old Laura Maidens (right) started as the Rock Hall’s librarian in early September. Here are some of the highlights of her gig.”...

Atlas Obscura, Nov. 6

2017 American Library in Paris Book Award

Cover of The Novel of the Century

The Novel of the Century: The Extraordinary Adventure of Les Misérables by David Bellos is the winner of the fifth annual American Library in Paris Book Award. The award honors any book-length prose fiction or nonfiction work, originally written in English, about France or the French. It was launched in 2013 with a generous gift to the American Library in Paris from the Florence Gould Foundation. The award was presented to Bellos at a November 3 ceremony....

American Library in Paris, Nov. 6

Why we digitize

NYPL digitization copy stand

Josh Hadro writes: “Institutions like the New York Public Library have been digitizing for decades. That means millions of items are now more findable than ever before. But I think there might also be an interesting signal loss. We are killer at counting digitization throughput and measuring analytics around the performance of the materials we put online. But those are just shadows on the wall compared to what we’re really after, which is meaningful engagement with and use of the materials.”...

New York Public Library Blogs, Nov. 6

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