Libraries are serving as ballot drop-off sites

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A ballot drop box outside the Arthur Lakes Library in Colorado School of Mines in Golden.

Many states have  for voters to cast their ballots by mail this year as an alternative to gathering at a polling place during a pandemic. But in an environment where  are trying to raise doubts about the security of voting by mail and the ability of the United States Postal Service to deliver mail-in ballots, many libraries are using their unimpeachable reputations to offer stability as ballot drop-off sites....

AL: The Scoop, Sept. 28; Pew Research Center, June 24; Fox News, May 26

Top 100 Most Banned and Challenged Books of the Past Decade

ALA’s Office for Intellectual Freedom has been documenting attempts to ban books in libraries and schools since 1990. For Banned Books Week, OIF compiled this list of the most banned and challenged books from 2010–2019 by reviewing both the public and confidential censorship reports it received. This list draws attention to literary censorship but only provides a snapshot of book challenges. OIF estimates about 82–97% of challenges remain unreported....

ALA Office for Intellectual Freedom, Sept. 27

Graves County (Ky.) Public Library's bookmobile. (Photo: Graves County (Ky.) Public Library)

In honor of the (September 28–October 2), American Libraries presents statistics on the buildings, staff, bookmobiles, and users of small and rural libraries. ARSL was founded in 1982 by Bernard Vavrek, director of the Center for the Study of Rural Librarianship at Clarion (Pa.) University. The typical rural library employs 1.9 full-time staff members, in a space that is 2,600 square feet on average. Kentucky has the most bookmobiles of any state: 75....

American Libraries Trend, Sept./Oct.

ALA news releases

Joseph Lloyd Manor (Photo: Society for the Preservation of Long Island Antiquities)

United for Libraries will designate Joseph Lloyd Manor in Lloyd Harbor, New York, as a Literary Landmark in honor of Jupiter Hammon, the first published African-American poet. Hammon (1711–ca.1806) was enslaved at Joseph Lloyd Manor, where he wrote powerfully about the social and moral conflicts of chattel slavery which he endured most of his life. Hammon’s known works include three essays and six poems, including “An Address to the Negroes of the State of New-York” and “An Essay on Slavery.” The designation will take place at 2 p.m. ET on October 17, which recognizes Hammon’s 309th birthday as well as Black Poetry Day....

United for Libraries, Sept. 29

Pie chart: About a quarter of US adults get news from YouTube

About a quarter of all US adults (26%) surveyed say they get news on YouTube, according to a new report from Pew Research Center. The study found that Americans are as likely to watch independent channels on the platform as they are to watch established news organizations; videos from independent news producers are more likely to cover subjects negatively and discuss conspiracy theories....

Pew Research Center, Sept. 28

Man of Steel produced by DC Entertainment and Legendary Pictures, distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures. Modification done by Reddit user "derpfakes". and one more author - Man of Steel imagery taken from official BluRay. Modification taken from the YouTube channel of "derpfakes."

David Schneider writes: “In an article titled the authors describe software they created that takes advantage of the fact that real videos of people contain physiological signals that are not visible to the eye. In particular, video of a person’s face contains subtle shifts in color that result from pulses in blood circulation. Translation: Deepfakes can’t convincingly mimic how your pulse shows up in your face.”...

IEEE Spectrum, Sept. 28; IEEE Xplore, July 15

Latest Library Links

Newspaper Navigator image collage

The Library of Congress's new AI tool lets users search through 16 million historical US newspaper pages for images that help explain the stories of the past. The  shows how seminal events and characters, such as wars and presidents, have been depicted in the press....

The Next Web, Sept. 16

Student with tablet (Photo: Patricia Prudente/Unsplash)

Kirk Siegler writes: “Across the country as American schools struggle with whether to reopen or stay virtual, many rural districts are worried their students will fall even further behind than their city peers. The pandemic has shone a glaring light on a lot of inequalities. The federal government estimates that . In numerous recent interviews, educators have told NPR they’re concerned the rural–urban divide will only worsen if kids can’t get online to learn.”...

NPR, Apr. 24, Sept. 28

Computer Virus? stock skull (Photo: Lynn Friedman/Flickr)

Neil J. Rubenking writes: “We call it antivirus, but in truth it’s unlikely you’ll get hit with an actual computer virus. Malware these days is about making money, and there’s no easy way to cash in on spreading a virus. and data-stealing Trojans are much more common, as are bots that let the bot-herder rent out your computer for nefarious purposes. Modern antivirus utilities handle Trojans, rootkits, spyware, adware, ransomware, and more.”...

PC Mag, Sept. 29; American Libraries Trend, June 2018

Dewey Decibel

Cover of Percy Jackson and the Olympians

Teen services librarian Amanda Borgia writes: “Terminology is always growing and changing, and libraries are no exception. Some use tween to describe 10–12 years, those in-between adolescence and the teenage years. Others use it to describe middle schoolers (typically 6th–8th graders aged 11–14). For some libraries the question arises, should we have a separate collection for tweens? Where should this section be located? Should tweens have their own area?”...

Teen Services Underground, Sept. 29

Cover of Goodnight Moon

The podcast 99% Invisible looks at the 125th anniversary of New York Public Library and its list of the 10 most checked-out books in its history, which had an odd footnote—that Margaret Wise Brown’s classic Goodnight Moon was not included. The story behind that footnote involves a powerful librarian, a progressive school, and the creation of library spaces for children....

99% Invisible, Sept. 29

Cover of Tweets and the Streets

Matthew Sperling writes: “Has anything ever caused a faster transformation in our practices of living than social media? Fifteen years ago, it barely existed; today, it occupies a large portion of the waking consciousness of a few billion people. The 10 books I’ve chosen here trace the development of social media across the last decade, explore its effects in everyday life, and place it in its wider context. They share a sense of its enormous dynamism and power, as well as its vertiginous capacity for harm.”...

The Guardian (UK), Sept. 23

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