Building Library Capacity Grants distributed to 17 libraries

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Harvey Library, a red-orange brick building that looks kind of like a Nintendo-style squid face

ALA announced on July 10 that it has awarded Building Library Capacity Grants to 17 libraries at across the United States. The $10,000 grants are intended to bolster operations and services at academic libraries that have experienced economic hardship from the consequences of the pandemic and its aftermath. Funding is supported through a three-year grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Each year, the award will focus on adding capacity to different segments of the library community....

ALA, July 10

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The ALA Nominating Committee is seeking candidates for the positions of ALA president-elect and councilor-at-large for the 2024 spring ballot. The president-elect will serve a three-year term: as president-elect in 2024–2025, as president in 2025–2026, and as immediate past president in 2026–2027. Councilors-at-large will also serve three-year terms, beginning at the end of ALA’s 2024 Annual Conference and wrapping at the adjournment of the 2027 Annual Conference. See the for more information about both roles, procedures for running for office, and frequently asked questions....

ALA Governance Office, July 7

Colorful hands raised in the air

The Public Library Association has published the . The national survey explored different types of public library programs and services, the nature of partnerships with other organizations, and the state of library facilities. Among the survey’s findings are that virtually all libraries provide summer reading programs, and that most provide job and career services and election services. The survey is the third in a rotating series that explores public library roles, services, and resources, and provides actionable data for decision-making and advocacy....

Public Library Association, June 21

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Nicole Girten writes: “The Montana State Library Commission voted 5–1, with one abstention, in favor of withdrawing from the American Library Association, citing comments made by the incoming president of the organization where she self-identified as a ‘Marxist lesbian’ in a since-deleted tweet. The commission voted Tuesday after hearing more than an hour of public comment, much of which was in support of the withdrawal and laced with false narratives around sexually explicit material being pushed to children in libraries.”...

Daily Montanan, July 12

Trees with orange wildfire smoke

Chelsey Roos writes: “The Canadian wildfires have brought a smoky summer to many of our communities. In some parts of North America, wildfire season is a yearly occurrence that is only getting worse. For others, this may be the first time you’ve had to deal with smoke and poor air quality. If a blanket of smoke has settled upon your community, simple programs and robust collections can help. And don’t forget to take care of yourself. Air purifiers can work wonders if the smoke is getting inside. A high-quality mask offers protection. Plan extra rest if you can’t escape the smoke.”...

ALSC Blog, July 9

A padlock on a gate

Kelly Jensen writes: “Mississippi has a new law on the books directly impacting access and use of digital resources like Hoopla and Overdrive for those under the age of 18 throughout the state. Even if granted parental permission, minors may not have materials available to them, if vendors do not ensure every item within their offerings meets the new, wide-reaching definition of ‘obscenity’ per the state. Mississippi Code 39-3-25, , went into effect July 1, and libraries across the state have scrambled to be in compliance.”...

Book Riot, July 7

Latest Library Links

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Meta’s new Threads app, to other microblogging services, surpassed 100 million users in days, making it the fastest-growing consumer app ever. It’s easy to join (see a with a list of features, and you follow) although , particularly due to . (See , as well as the privacy policies of similar services.) The initial surge to capture Twitter’s user base....

The Verge, July 10; Insider, July 6; CNET, July 10; Mashable, July 10; Lifehacker, July 6 & 7; Ars Technica, July 8; The Conversation, July 9

Sticker reading "Fair Use Has a Posse"

Rick Anderson writes: “If you’ve ever received a copy of an in-copyright document supplied by your library, you’ve likely seen a [copyright notice]. And if you’re someone who is fairly familiar with US copyright law, and especially with the , that notice may have led you to ask yourself the following question: ‘Why are my rights more constrained with regard to a copy made for me by the library than they would be if the copy were made anywhere else?’”...

The Scholarly Kitchen, July 5

A roll of "I Voted" stickers

On June 29, the Urban Libraries Council published , a leadership brief that outlines the work public libraries perform to ensure all community members are informed and active in protecting democracy and intellectual freedom. The brief highlights the core areas libraries can focus on to promote a more democratic community. It also spotlights eight libraries in the US and Canada that empower their patrons through various programs and services, such as Toronto Public Library’s On Civil Society series that facilitates conversations and discourse on local, national, and international issues....

Urban Libraries Council, June 29

ALA news and press releases

A silhouetted figure holding a book with a rainbow infinity symbol

Elizabeth Mills writes: “For children with sensory or learning differences, [library programs like storytimes] may present barriers to benefitting from the play and learning in the program. A research team at the University of Washington [in Seattle] has released the , which seeks to ‘empower youth-serving librarians and library staff with the early literacy training and programming materials they need to provide autism-inclusive early literacy services.’ The toolkit’s training and resources apply to both in- and out-of-library programming, and is also broadly relevant for anyone seeking to better understand and serve autistic children and their families.”...

WebJunction, July 5

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Chengdu Worldcon, the 81st World Science Fiction Convention held in China, announced the finalists for the 2023 Hugo Awards, Lodestar Award for Best Young Adult Book, and Astounding Award for Best New Writer on July 6. The Hugo Awards recognize outstanding science fiction novels, novellas, short stories, graphic novels, series, dramatic presentations, and related works, as well as individuals working in the field. Awards will be presented on October 21 at a formal ceremony at Chengdu Worldcon....

The Hugo Awards, July 6

An illustration of a medieval scribe

Danièle Cybulskie writes: “If a medieval person wanted a copy of a book or a poem, acquiring one wasn’t usually quite as simple as heading to the local bookstore. Every book prior to the invention of the printing press was hand-copied from an original, which meant that it involved a lengthy process. Here’s a five-minute look at the process by which a book came to be copied.” Arranging to borrow a work and finding a scribe to hire were both challenging tasks, even before the months of painstaking copying work....

Medievalists.net, July 3

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