Change the framework to get outside of the library.

American Library Association • June 19, 2018
Emporia State

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Organizational barriers to teen services

Youth Matters, by Linda W. Braun

Linda W. Braun writes: “‘You need to get out of the library to build relationships and find out what teen interests are.’ Workshop participants frequently hear me say that, and the response to my statement is almost always agreement. Yet I find, over and over, that public library staffers prioritize getting teens into the building over getting themselves out. At least in part, library staffers continue to stay inside because of systemic barriers. What are some of these barriers?”...

American Libraries column, June

How libraries break down barriers

Cover of The Librarian’s Guide to Homelessness

Karen Muller writes: “As I was gathering books for this column, I saw a title that needed reshelving: The Information-Poor in America, by Thomas Childers (Scarecrow, 1975). Yes, it was written a whole library career ago, but it shows how libraries continue to be the public institution able to address the information needs of everyone. The following titles offer current practices and tools for librarians seeking to eliminate barriers to information access.”...

American Libraries column, June

Kid lit campaign against immigration horrors

Kid Lit Says No Kids in Cages statement

As it has done many times before in the face of injustice affecting kids and families, the children’s literature community is banding together for a cause. The newest campaign is Kid Lit Says No Kids in Cages, a response to the scenes depicted in the news of immigrant parents and children being separated at the southern border of the US. A core group of 20 children’s authors, including Melissa de la Cruz, Jenny Han, and Rainbow Rowell, released a statement on June 18 condemning the actions. They created an electronic petition to collect names to add to their statement, and an Action Network link to raise funds. Meanwhile, blogger Terry Hong has some recommendations on books about the child refugee experience....

Publishers Weekly, June 19; The Booklist Reader, June 18

More libraries are going fine-free

The central Enoch Pratt Free Library in Baltimore. Photo by Barbara Haddock Taylor / Baltimore Sun

The Washington Post Editorial Board writes: “In an era when ebooks and new forms of entertainment have threatened to drive down library use, public libraries are increasingly looking to modernize and innovate. Some have turned to ebooks or digital literacy programs to reach more patrons. Others have opted for a different approach: They have gotten rid of the pesky late fees that drive borrowers away. Last week, the Enoch Pratt Free Library in Baltimore announced it was eliminating fines. This serves a laudable purpose.”...

Washington Post, June 11, 17; July 10, 2015; Pew Research Center, Apr. 7, 2016

An Insider's Guide to New Orleans

Dewey Decibel podcast

Dewey Decibel podcast: Things to do at Annual

Episode 27 of Dewey Decibel features must-see and must-eat recommendations from two folks who know New Orleans well. First, American Libraries Associate Editor Terra Dankowski talks with David Slater, director of culinary development for famed New Orleans chef Emeril Lagasse’s restaurants. Slater shares his favorite places to eat and drink in the city.

Next, American Libraries Associate Editor and Dewey Decibel host Phil Morehart speaks with Shellie Lister, a librarian and public relations and community coordinator at St. Tammany Parish Library, which produces an excellent podcast on New Orleans culture and literacy. Lister discusses the city’s literary landmarks as well as some off-the-beaten-path sights to enjoy.

School official to climb Mt. Kilimanjaro for library books

Tuscaloosa City Schools administrator Andrew Maxey with some of the “sad books” recently culled from his district’s school library collections. Photo by Trisha Crain |

Tuscaloosa (Ala.) City Schools administrator Andrew Maxey (right) can’t turn away from the burden of knowing his district’s school libraries need books. A language arts teacher for much of his career, Maxey will soon climb Mount Kilimanjaro, Africa’s highest point, and is trying to raise money for new school library books for students in his district as part of the effort. His goal is $19,341, the elevation in feet of Kilimanjaro. He’s paying his own way, so all of the contributions go directly to the libraries....

Birmingham (Ala.) News, June 18

Iowa libraries take action for Puerto Rico

Materials damaged by Hurricane Maria rest in the Francisco Oller Library

After Hurricanes Irma and Maria passed through Puerto Rico in September 2017, the island’s recovery is taking longer than officials had hoped. Libraries in Johnson and Linn counties, Iowa, decided to help as much as they could, remembering their experiences in 2008 when Iowa rivers flooded. Libraries in Iowa City, Coralville, and North Liberty matched with the Francisco Oller Library in Puerto Rico to lend assistance. The action came through an initiative by ALA’s Adopt a Library program....

Iowa City Daily Iowan, June 12

Got civics?

iCivics logo

Connie Williams writes: “Civics instruction has come to the forefront because it is a large part of the C3 History Framework. Civics, economics, geography, and history are intertwined across all grades; and the best part is that they all come with inquiry at their base. Librarians have many opportunities to incorporate civics in their programming with guest speakers, but there are many resources we can provide to teachers and students as we partner with them in instruction. Here is one of my favorites: iCivics.”...

Knowledge Quest blog, June 18
ALA news

The impact of Big Deals on the research ecosystem

Cover of Nature Cell Biology

Kevin Smith writes: “The simple fact is that publisher bundling deals are larded with what, from the point of view of usage, is simply junk—obscure titles that can only be sold by tying them to more desirable resources. At my institution, over 30% of the titles in our journal package from Wiley are zero-use, but it is still less expensive to buy the package than to subscribe only to the titles that would get substantial use. This practice is highly coercive, and the impact on peer review is inevitable.”...

IO: In the Open, June 16

New book on thefts of rare illustrations

Cover of Torn from Their Bindings

A new book by Travis McDade, curator of law rare books at the University of Illinois law school,¬†tells the story of the theft of valuable antique illustrations and the destruction of rare books from academic libraries across the US. Torn from Their Bindings: A Story of Art, Science, and the Pillaging of American University Libraries, published by the University Press of Kansas, describes Robert Kindred’s spree of cutting prints from academic libraries across the country during the summer of 1980....

Illinois News Bureau, June 18
Latest Library Links

The essential Anthony Bourdain reading list

Cover of A Cook’s Tour: Global Adventures in Extreme Cuisine, by Anthony Bourdain

Cassandra Neace writes: “People were pretty shaken by the news that Anthony Bourdain had died. Whether they had watched him on one of his several TV shows, had eaten in one of his restaurants (or one that he recommended), or read any Anthony Bourdain books, many felt as though they had lost someone¬†close to them. For all of you who had never read one of his books, now seems the perfect time to connect to the uniquely talented Anthony Bourdain. Here is a reading list.”...

Book Riot, June 19

Celebrating 10 million patents

Patent for a Base Ball Catcher by J. E. Bennett, March 22, 1904

The US Patent and Trademark Office will issue the 10 millionth utility patent on June 19. This is a historic milestone for the agency and for inventors. Use the hashtag #10MillionPatents to join the celebration. Danielle Sklarew writes: “Within the holdings of the National Archives are some some super interesting patents ranging from doll designs to flying machines. NARA also holds many sports gear patents. Here are six important athletic equipment patents.”...

Pieces of History, June 19

Why we can’t always trust negative product reviews

Negative online reviews

Caroline Beaton writes: “We use reviews to vet our options for product purchases. In 2016, the Pew Research Center found that 82% of American adults say they sometimes or always read online reviews for new purchases. Marketing data indicates that negative reviews in particular dramatically influence our buying behaviors. But research on the biases and demographics of online reviewers—and our own, often errant interpretations—suggests that our faith in reviews is misguided.”...

New York Times, June 13; Pew Research Center, Dec. 19, 2016; Journal of Marketing Research 43, no. 3 (Aug. 2006): 345–354

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