August 23, 2006
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U.S. & World News

From left, Seoul Mayor Oh Se-hoon, Culture and Tourism Minister Kim Myung-gon, and First Lady Kwon Yang-suk. At right is IFLA President Alex Byrne. Photo courtesy of IFLAKorean librarians invigorate IFLA in Seoul
“Libraries: Dynamic Engines for the Knowledge and Information Society” commenced August 20 in Seoul. The five-day annual World Library and Information Congress of the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA) took on new razzle-dazzle in the South Korean capital as First Lady Kwon Yang-suk (in white dress) and former president Kim Dae-jung, winner of the 2000 Nobel Peace Prize for his lifelong dedication to human rights, addressed more than 3,000 registrants at the opening session....

John Shaw BillingsNYPL’s reading room no longer in a class by itself
Some 25,000 reference books in the Rose Main Reading Room of the New York Public Library’s Humanities and Social Sciences Library are getting a new classification system this year. Since the 1890s, the Reading Room collection has been arranged according to a unique scheme developed by the Research Libraries’ first director, Dr. John Shaw Billings (above), a Civil War surgeon and physician who had directed the Library of the Surgeon General’s Office for 30 years....

D.C. residents protest branch-upgrade delays
Dozens of Washington residents rallied August 11 to protest the delay in reopening the Watha T. Daniel/Shaw Neighborhood Library, one of four branches of the District of Columbia Public Library closed in December 2004 for an overhaul....

Digital transition brings changes to LC’s workforce
The growing emphasis on digital initiatives is compelling major shifts in the Library of Congress’s workforce. In an August 16 article posted on the website of Government Executive magazine, LC Director for Workforce Acquisitions Bill Ayers said 200 employees had taken advantage of a voluntary retirement incentive for librarians who had become “very comfortable” with traditional librarianship and chose not to gain new technological skills....

Messages to the World coverOsama bin Laden’s Messages maintained
Members of the Marion County (Fla.) Commission voted 4–1 August 2 to retain Messages to the World: The Statement of Osama bin Laden in county libraries. The action was in response to the June 22 appeal by complainant Brian Creekbaum after his reconsideration request was denied by Marion County Public Library Director Julie Sieg....

ALA News

Banned Books Week buttonMore than one book a day challenged in U.S. schools and libraries
The Office for Intellectual Freedom notes that there were 405 known attempts to remove books in 2005. About 70% of the challenges took place in schools and school libraries. Bookstores and libraries around the country will celebrate the freedom to read with exhibits, readings, and special events during Banned Books Week, September 23–30....

ALA wins freedom of speech award
Chicago’s Newberry Library presented ALA with the John Peter Altgeld Freedom of Speech Award July 29 during the 20th Annual Bughouse Square Debates, a celebration of outdoor soapbox oratory sponsored by the library, in Washington Square Park. The award, named after the Illinois governor who in 1893 pardoned the three surviving defendants in the Haymarket Riot trial, honors a person or organization that has achieved recognition as a defender of free speech and ideas....

Step Up to the Plate logoLast chance to Step Up to the Plate
All entries for the Step Up to the Plate @ your library program are due September 1, giving library patrons their final opportunity to enter the national baseball trivia contest for a chance to win a grand prize trip to the Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in Cooperstown, N.Y....

Jewish Lit Let's Talk about ItNew grants for Let’s Talk About It: Jewish Literature
ALA’s Public Programs Office and Nextbook, a gateway to Jewish literature, culture, and ideas, have announced two new rounds of grants for Let’s Talk About It: Jewish Literature—Identity and Imagination, a theme-based reading and discussion series. Under the new deadlines, two new themes and increased programming grants are available. Public and academic libraries are eligible to apply....



Weedflower coverFeatured review:

Kadohata, Cynthia. Weedflower. Read by Kimberley Farr. 6.5 hrs. Listening Library CD (0-307-28581-2), 2006.
The Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor changes 12-year-old Sumiko’s life forever. Forced to leave their beautiful flower farm in California, Sumiko and her family are corralled into an internment camp on an Indian reservation in the bleak Arizona desert. Sumiko’s blossoming friendship with Frank, a Mohave boy, restores her ability to hope for her future....

New Orleans Update

ALA registration reminder postcardKatrina satellite photo postcard

One year later: Post-Katrina postcards found in New Orleans
Ten months after Katrina ravaged New Orleans, ALA held the city’s first major post-hurricane conference. More than 16,000 library professionals—librarians and support staff, furniture- and booksellers, editors, and spouses—came in June to support the local libraries. One of them was Jennifer Henderson, who writes about some of the postcards she discovered that were produced after the storm, including (above) an advance-registration reminder card ALA sent to members that features the tagline “Libraries Rebuild Communities” and a satellite image issued by Express Publishing in Harahan, Louisiana....
Postcard Collector, vol. 24, no. 9 (Sept.)

Katrina videoKatrina destruction captured on video during conference
An ALA Annual Conference participant shot this short video (1:46) of one devastated area, commenting “If I hadn’t had the opportunity to get out of the city, I wouldn’t have noticed much of a difference. I wish my camera could capture the kindness and genuine appreciation shown by the New Orleans residents. It was all truly humbling.”...

Hurricane Katrina video, with P.O.D. soundtrackKatrina video, with soundtrack
An interesting compilation of hurricane and damage clips (4:20), accompanied by a track by alternative metal band P.O.D., appears on this video. Of course, for the best retrospective documentary yet on New Orleans and Katrina, watch (or rewatch) Spike Lee’s When the Levees Broke: A Requiem in Four Acts, which debuted on HBO this week....
You Tube

Division News

Grow Your Own @ your library grants
PLA is now accepting applications for its popular “Grow Your Own @ your library” institutional scholarship. This year, PLA will award nine public libraries with grants of $8,000 each to be distributed to staff members who are working to obtain a master’s degree in library and information science. One library from each of the nine Public Library Data Service (PLDS) population categories will be selected....

John B. Horrigan and Cathy DeRosaLITA President’s Program (MP3 audio file)
The LITA President’s Program at Annual Conference in New Orleans featured John B. Horrigan of the Pew Internet and American Life and OCLC's Cathy DeRosa discussing their research on the evolution of the internet and its effect on library users’ behavior. The presentation is roughly one hour long....

Divisions, round table support Emerging Leaders program
Nine divisions and one round table have announced they will sponsor their members’ participation in the new Emerging Leaders 2007 program. The program was initiated by ALA President Leslie Burger and is intended to welcome and train 100 new librarians to get a jump-start in leadership....


Schoolgirls read in the Argyole Community LibraryREAD Nepal wins Gates Access to Learning Award
The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation’s Access to Learning Award is given annually to recognize the innovative efforts of libraries, organizations, or library agencies outside the United States in providing no-cost public access to information technology. The 2006 award, announced August 21 at the IFLA Congress in Seoul, Korea, went to Rural Education and Development (READ) Nepal for its innovative approach to building and sustaining village libraries....
Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

LRRT announces 2006 winners of the Jesse H. Shera Award
ALA’s Library Research Round Table has awarded the 2006 Jesse H. Shera Award for Distinguished Published Research to “A Citation Study of the Characteristics of the Linguistics Literature” by University of Illinois at Chicago librarians Helen Georgas and John Cullars, which appeared in College and Research Libraries 66, no. 6 (November 2005): 496–515....

Seen Online

Vamos a Cuba coverVamos ruling to be appealed
Continuing its efforts to remove a controversial children’s book, the Miami-Dade School Board voted this afternoon to appeal a federal judge’s ruling that forced the district to keep Vamos a Cuba and 23 other titles on school library shelves. In a 5–2 decision, with two members absent, the board said it wanted to protect the right of the district to determine the content of school libraries, rather than leave it up to a judge....
Miami Herald, Aug. 22

EPA begins closing libraries before Congress acts on plan
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is moving ahead this summer to shut down libraries, end public access to research materials, and box up unique collections on the assumption that Congress will not reverse President Bush’s proposed budget reductions, according to agency documents released August 21....
Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility, Aug. 21

Librarians at the gates
“With the federal government ever more intent on spying on its own citizens, and on classifying, concealing, and manipulating larger swaths of information and intelligence, librarians and library custodians are on the front lines protecting freedom of inquiry and our right to privacy,” writes Joseph Huff-Hannon. “And where right-wing groups, both local and national, have campaigned for censorship, librarians have also stepped up to the plate to defend minority points of view in their collections.”...
The Nation, Aug. 22

NCLIS commissioners oppose IMLS consolidation plan (PDF file)
Meeting in Washington, D.C., August 14, members of the U.S. National Commission on Libraries and Information Science opposed by a vote of 11–1 a draft proposal (PDF file) by the Institute of Museum and Library Services for the consolidation of the two organizations....
National Commission on Libraries and Information Science

Samuel Taylor ColeridgeBritish Library acquires Coleridge archive
An extraordinary archive from the extended family of Samuel Taylor Coleridge (1772–1834), one of the great English Romantic poets, has been bought by the British Library. The vast treasury of papers revealing the family’s bemused if affectionate view of the maverick talent in their midst had been kept in family ownership in Ottery St. Mary, the Devon village where the poet was born, for two centuries....
The Independent, Aug. 21

Indianapolis OKs union vote
The Indianapolis–Marion County Public Library Board agreed this week to recognize an employee union if enough eligible workers vote for it. In a resolution passed unanimously Thursday, the seven-member board established policies for organizing such a union, including a requirement that at least 75% of the employees cast ballots in an election....
Indianapolis Star, Aug. 19

A chapter closes
In one year as the children’s librarian at the District of Columbia Public Library’s Northeast branch, Tony Hurst’s silly songs, wide-eyed storytelling and passion for children’s books have made him bigger than Barney and more wonderful than the Wiggles in many Washington households. But Hurst told his last tale at DCPL August 17 before heading to nearby Brent Elementary School to become the librarian there....
Washington Post, Aug. 17

The books Google could open
Book Search is a Herculean undertaking, digitizing both new and old works housed in some of the world’s top libraries and rendering them searchable through Google’s website. This powerful tool will make less well-known written works or hard-to-find research materials more accessible to students, teachers, and others around the world. Book Search comes at a time when college and university libraries are hard-pressed to keep up with the publishing and technology revolutions....
Washington Post, Aug. 22

Actions and Answers

M87 elliptical galaxy , photographed by the Chandra X-ray TelescopeSmithsonian photography archive online
The Smithsonian Photography Initiative has launched an electronic portal to a portion of the vast image collections residing in its 18 museums and galleries, nine research centers, and the National Zoo. Its search engine offers access to a cross-section of the work of more than 100 photographers, who used 50 different photographic and image-making processes and technologies....
Smithsonian Institution

Dolores Huerta posterUniversity of California launches Calisphere website
The University of California launched on August 21 a free website that offers educators, students, and the public access to more than 150,000 images, documents, and other primary source materials from the libraries and museums of the UC campuses and cultural heritage organizations across California. Calisphere’s primary sources include photographs, documents, newspapers, political cartoons, and other cultural artifacts that reveal the diverse history and culture of the state....
University of California, Aug. 21

NCES: School librarians are now instructors
The National Center for Education Statistics has released a report on expenditures for public elementary and secondary education for the 2003–2004 school year, which now includes librarians in the category of instruction and instruction-related expenditures. It is unclear what changes, if any, the Texas Education Agency (or other state agencies) will make to the 65% rule in light of this recent change to the NCES definition....
Texas Association of School Administrators, Aug. 17

SILS students in the 1950sChapel Hill SILS celebrates its 75th year
The School of Information and Library Science at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is launching its 75th anniversary September 18 with a celebration on the theme, “Illuminating the Past, Imagining the Future.” Photos showing the school’s history appear on its website....
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill SILS

Search privacy: The danger is real
It actually isn’t that hard to identify someone just by their search information, writes Jim Rapoza. Several national news outlets have been able to successfully identify individuals based solely on groupings of search terms. One of the main reasons this works is that people like to search for information on themselves or on people they know, not realizing that these “ego searches” are often clear markers for their entire search history....
eWeek, Aug. 21

How to find free, quality, full-text articles and books on the scholarly web
Robert J. Lackie, instruction and reference librarian at Rider University in Lawrenceville, New Jersey, describes pertinent resources on the free web of interest to librarians and other educators who conduct research and would like to easily supplement their currently available holdings, in print and electronic formats and via commercial vendors’ fee-based subscription databases, within their own libraries....
MultiMedia & Internet @ Schools, July/Aug.

The Story of Tom Brennan coverAward-winning Australian children’s books
The Children’s Book Council of Australia has announced its picks of the best literature for young readers published in 2005, with J. C. Burke’s The Story of Tom Brennan (Random House Australia) chosen as best book for older readers. The judges commented in their report (PDF file): “This year’s reading saw families wrestling with mental illnesses such as bipolar disorder, depression, and schizophrenia. In several notable works, authors were able to provide shimmers of credible optimism as a counterpoint to despair in the face of unremitting bleakness.”...
Children’s Book Council of Australia

Youths are underwhelmed by it all
A Los Angeles Times/Bloomberg poll finds that a large majority of the 12- to 24-year-olds surveyed are bored with their entertainment choices some or most of the time. Other polls in the series show that this demographic likes to watch brand-new movies at home rather than in theaters, says that duplicating CDs or DVDs it owns is perfectly legal, isn’t as eager to watch TV on cellphones and iPods as networks might think, uses the phone to text-message friends more than call them, and often plays games or sends e-mail at the same time as homework....
Los Angeles Times, Aug. 7–11

PLCMC Learning 2.0 logo23 things you can learn about Web 2.0
Learn along with the staff of the Public Library of Charlotte and Mecklenburg County, North Carolina, as they participate in a nine-week program to complete 23 small exercises to explore and expand their knowledge of the internet and Web 2.0 technologies. (Sorry, only PLCMC staffers are eligible for the prizes.) Details about the tasks are activated each week, and the project is in its third week now....
Public Library of Charlotte and Mecklenburg County

Rejected paper proposal blues
Steven Bell has some suggestions to offer those whose papers were not accepted for the ACRL 13th National Conference in Baltimore, March 31–April 1, 2007—or for any conference, for that matter....
ACRLog, Aug. 23

What does your browser reveal about you?
“Believe it or not, the choice of your favorite browser reveals a lot about your personality,” sardonically writes Michigan State grad student Luke Maciak, who says of IE 5.0 users: “You stubbornly refuse to upgrade that ancient Win 98 box that you are using because you don’t need some fancy computer and in your opinion the one you have works just fine. You also probably don’t use antivirus or antispyware either.” He provides stats on the browsers used by visitors to his site....
Terminally Incoherent, Aug. 19

IFLA/OCLC Fellows for 2007 named
OCLC, the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions, the American Theological Library Association, and European library cooperative OCLC PICA announced the IFLA/OCLC Early Career Development Fellows for 2007 at the IFLA congress in Seoul August 22. The fellowship program supports library and information science professionals from countries with developing economies. The 2007 Fellows are from Ghana, the Philippines, Jamaica, Brazil, and Serbia....
OCLC, Aug. 22

Sponsor: Sirsi Dynix

Sirsi Dynix ad

PLA and ALSC are currently taking special orders for Every Child Ready to Read brochures, customized with your library logo and contact information. Order by September 29 to take advantage of special pricing.


Southern Methodist University, Dallas. This position reports to the Director of the Center for Information Processing, and holds a leadership role in the administration and operation of the processing/technical services department for Central University Libraries.....

for more career opportunities.

The National Library Symbol was originally designed by Ralph E. DeVore for use in the Western Maryland Public Libraries. Find out more about it in this ALA Library Fact Sheet.

Academic librarians answer 72.8 million reference questions each year—almost twice the attendance at college football games. Need more Quotable Facts like this? Download a booklet or a bookmark with clever quotes to help you make the case for libraries.

The Herb Block Foundation’s Defending Freedoms grant program seeks proposals from organizations throughout the U.S. that strive to safeguard the basic freedoms guaranteed in the Bill of Rights and work to eliminate all forms of prejudice and discrimination.

What do YOU think?

Does your library offer the use of word processing, spreadsheet, or presentation software to your patrons?

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Results of the
August 16 poll:

Where does your library rank in its use of blogs, wikis, social software, and other Web 2.0 technologies?

No plans.....30%

(150 responses)

For cumulated results and selected responses to all AL Direct polls, visit the AL Online website.

Decaf Librarian's Blend from Intelligentsia

Chicago’s Intelligentsia Coffee and Tea offers Decaf Librarian’s Blend: “The Librarian’s Blend is named for that person who always told you to keep quiet when you were studying. This blend is representative of the soul of the librarian: steady, reassuring, and always there with that slight edge of eccentricity. It has a bold base with a bit of sparkle. Here’s to good reading.”

August 2006
AL cover
Stories inside include:

New Orleans Gathering Sends Message of Hope and Renewal

Building Bridges through Consensus

Libraries in the Eye of the Storm

Rising from the Storm benefit concert
The Ocean County Library in Toms River, New Jersey, uses public programming to benefit hurricane-affected libraries. On September 10 it will host a “Rising from the Storm” Benefit Concert and Silent Auction to raise funds for its adopted Katrina library, the Hancock County (Miss.) Library System.

You can never have enough banners (unless it’s book banners). Check out ALA Graphics products at the ALA Store.

Calls for Proposals:

By Sept. 8:
The Michigan Reading Association is seeking program proposals for its 52nd annual conference “Literacy Changes Everything,” to be held March 10–12, 2007, in Grand Rapids. Members of the school library media community are encouraged to submit proposals to showcase information literacy, media literacy, literacy coaches, lexile use, and reading promotions. Contact: Liz Lewis.

By Sept. 22:
Five Weeks to a Social Library, the first free, grassroots, completely online course devoted to teaching librarians about social software and how to use it in their libraries, will take place February 12–March 17, 2007. The organizers welcome proposals for live presentations and course content on blogs, wikis, RSS, and similar topics. Contact: Five Weeks to a Social Library.

By Sept. 30:
The Association of Research Libraries announces a call for nominations and applications for the 2007–2008 Leadership and Career Development Program. The LCDP is an 18-month program to prepare midcareer librarians from underrepresented racial and ethnic groups to take on increasingly demanding leadership roles in ARL libraries. Contact: Jerome Offord Jr.

By Oct. 10:
Online Northwest 2007, hosted by the Oregon University system February 16, announces a call for presentations that discuss how technology is being applied within library settings and how technology is affecting library patrons and services.

By Nov. 1:
The Popular Culture Association is seeking papers from graduate students for its upcoming annual joint meeting with the American Culture Association, April 4–7, 2007, in Boston. Prospective presenters should send a one-page abstract to Allen Ellis, Northern Kentucky University, Highland Heights, KY 41099-6101.

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