Efforts to restore the open internet.

American Library Association • January 8, 2019
Thinking Money for Kids

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The state of net neutrality

The internet: Speed may vary

Greg Landgraf writes: “The Federal Communications Commission’s Restoring Internet Freedom Order took effect June 11, 2018, overturning the net neutrality rules the agency established with 2015’s Open Internet Order. Since then, many individual states and other entities have taken it upon themselves to try to restore net neutrality protections. The following is a review of those efforts—successful, failed, and in progress—around the US.”...

American Libraries feature, Jan./Feb.

We are happier in states that support libraries

Smithtown (N.Y.) Library, a well-supported library

Americans are happier in states where governments spend more on public goods, such as libraries, parks, highways, natural resources, and police protection, a Baylor University study published in the journal Social Science Research, has found. “Public goods are things you can’t exclude people from using—and one person using them doesn’t stop another from doing so,” said researcher Patrick Flavin, associate professor of political science in Baylor’s College of Arts and Sciences. He found that public goods spending has broad benefits across income, education, gender, and race/ethnicity lines....

Baylor University, Jan. 4; Social Science Research, Nov. 19
The Crowley Company

The making of a microcredential

Penn State University student Luz Sanchez Tejada uses the school’s microcredentialing platform in Pattee Library to earn badges as part of her peer research consultant training. Photo by Steve Tressler

Emily Rimland writes: “In the last two years, Penn State University Libraries has seen rapid adoption of its information literacy microcredentials among students. Microcredentials—transferable forms of metadata-encoded, performance-based educational credits—are not new; they started gaining traction in academic libraries around 2012. What is different at Penn State is that to help manage the sudden volume, librarians have turned to a new ally: artificial intelligence (AI). We see microcredentials as an opportunity to extend our reach and deepen students’ engagement with information literacy.”...

American Libraries Spotlight, Jan./Feb.

Disability and equity

On My Mind, by Joanne Oud

Joanne Oud writes: “Not many discussions on equity and inclusion in librarianship have focused on disability. Equity issues do exist for librarians with disabilities, and many stem from views prevalent in our society. Disability is often represented negatively and seen as a personal tragedy or a problem to overcome. I recently surveyed 288 librarians, interviewing 10 who identified as having a disability, about their experiences working at academic libraries in Canada. Though most were positive about their workplaces, nearly all reported equity issues related to their disability.”...

American Libraries column, Jan./Feb.
ALA news

Sign up for the Midwinter Networking Uncommons

Networking Uncommons

Need a place to sit and chill at Midwinter? Maybe power up your tech between sessions? Or connect to new colleagues? Drop by the Networking Uncommons, located in the convention center, and make the connections you need. You’ll have plenty of space for several different discussions, lunch groups, or creative relaxation. The space is open during most of the conference and will have several different networking opportunities rotating throughout the conference. Sign up for a 30-minute slot from Friday through Monday....

ALA Conference Services

Formerly homeless people help out at Denver library

Peer navigator Cuica Montoya

A program employing formerly homeless people at the Denver Public Library is helping the homeless get off the streets and find work. Peer navigators in the library’s community resource office are recovering from their own homelessness, addiction, and mental health issues. The program’s four peer navigators work under the direction of four social workers whom the library employs. Demand for the assistance is growing. Chris Henning, DPL communications manager, said the social worker team also trains other library staff members on how to improve their interactions with homeless visitors....

KCNC-TV, Denver, Jan. 7

Governor snubs “One Book, One Nebraska” pick

Cover of This Blessed Earth

Since 2005, the Nebraska Center for the Book has had its annual “One Book One Nebraska” selection recognized by the governor. Not this year. The book selected was This Blessed Earth: A Year in the Life of an American Family Farm, which follows the life of Rick Hammond, a York County farmer. “The book that they are proposing was written by a political activist that really seemed to be out of touch,” Gov. Pete Ricketts said January 7. It “was not going to be something that was going to unify Nebraska.” The author, Ted Genoways, voiced surprise and concern....

Omaha World-Herald, Jan. 8
Latest Library Links

A community that reads together

Cover of Unusual Chickens for the Exceptional Poultry Farmer

Ronda Hughes writes: “My hometown has a population of approximately 55,000 people and seven school districts that have always acted as rivals. Three years ago, my superintendent and I decided to attempt to change that. Our goal was to unite our community for the sake of literacy. The Garland County (Ark.) Reads Committee developed a plan to create a county-wide reading event. On October 30, we hosted our annual Garland County Reads Festival. This year our book selection was Unusual Chickens for the Exceptional Poultry Farmer by Kelly Jones, an epistolary novel that is inexpensive.”...

Knowledge Quest blog, Jan. 8

Questioning the dogma of Banned Books Week

UC Berkeley Banned Books Week banner

Kate Lechtenberg writes: “I’ve always been uncomfortable with Banned Books Week, even though I work with the Office for Intellectual Freedom, teach pre-service librarians and teachers about intellectual freedom, and do research related to it. Elliott Kuecker, faculty librarian at the University of Georgia, published an article titled ‘Questioning the Dogma of Banned Books Week,’ and many of his arguments resonated with my long-standing discomfort. Kuecker uses Foucault’s notions of discourse to critique Banned Books Week and makes several noteworthy points.”...

Intellectual Freedom Blog, Jan. 7; Knowledge Quest blog, Sept. 23, 2015; Library Philosophy and Practice, Dec.
Dewey Decibel podcast

15 stunning university libraries

Richard J. Klarchek Information Commons, Loyola University Chicago

Academic institutions spend a good deal of resources to ensure their libraries inspire their students; at the University of Chicago school officials commissioned world-renowned architect Helmut Jahn to construct their newest library. And thanks to these exquisite designs, many libraries become the most iconic buildings on campus. From the traditional-style libraries at Queens College at Oxford University to the sleek modern structure at Loyola University in Chicago, Architectural Digest surveys 15 of the most beautiful college libraries from around the world.”...

Architectural Digest, Jan. 4

Participate in Citizen Science Day 2019

Citizen Science Day logo

With support from the National Network of Libraries of Medicine, the School for the Future of Innovation in Society at Arizona State University and SciStarter invite libraries to be part of Citizen Science Day on April 13. Now in its third year, Citizen Science Day is expanding to include meetups and events with a special focus on supporting libraries to involve their communities in authentic science projects in need of their help. The signature event this year will be the “Stall Catchers Megathon” by the Human Computation Institute. Complete the registration form to sign up....

Discover: Citizen Science Salon, Jan. 4

The story of sustainability in 2018

Plastic bag under iceberg

Andrew Winston writes: “Every year, I look for important themes in sustainability that will have lasting impact on society, from glaring evidence of global megatrends to inspiring stories of corporate action. The year 2018 brought extreme change—in weather and environmental ecosystems, in political winds and power, and in the expectations of business. It also brought incredible clarity about the scale of our challenges and opportunities. So let’s start with the big picture before moving to some corporate success stories. We have about 12 years left. That’s the clear message.”...

Harvard Business Review, Dec. 27

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