August 30, 2006
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U.S. & World News

Tennessee privatization debate continues
County commissioners are still at odds with the Jackson–Madison County (Tenn.) Library board over privatizing the library’s management. At its August 21 meeting, the commission voted 20–3 to challenge a Chancery Court ruling that the board has the legal authority to hire a private firm to run the library’s operations....

Voyage of the Basset coverMermaids find safe harbor in Utah library
The board of the Davis County (Utah) Library voted unanimously August 22 to retain the illustrated fantasy book Voyage of the Basset in the young adult collection. “We don’t rate books and never will,” trustee Mike Gann asserted. “Our job is to make things available.”...

HopeDance cover, July/AugLibrary pulls free monthly’s erotica issue
The San Luis Obispo City-County (Calif.) Public Library has removed the July/August 2006 issue of the free bimonthly magazine HopeDance from all its branches. In a July 13 staff memo, Library Director Brian Reynolds recommended recycling the copies, saying, “Take a look at it, as well, and you’ll see why I am concerned.”...

Indianapolis board votes to recognize union
The Indianapolis–Marion County Public Library Board agreed unanimously August 17 to recognize an employee union if enough workers support it. Board President Louis Mahern, who has previously resisted demands for collective bargaining, said in the August 19 Indianapolis Star that he “worked with other board members” to ensure there were enough votes to pass the measure, which requires at least 75% of eligible employees to cast ballots in a union election....



American Conservatism coverFeatured review:

Frohnen, Bruce, ed. American Conservatism: An Encyclopedia. Aug. 2006. 979p. ISI, hardcover. (1-932236-44-9).
The conservative movement, formed since World War II, was most closely associated with anticommunism. It is for some a political entity, for others a philosophical construct, but overall, its complexities and differing internal opinions are likely not to be understood by the average American. American Conservatism: An Encyclopedia seems intended to define and illuminate the variety of thought and ideas within the conservative movement rather than establish an absolute definition of what conservatism is....

Division News

More than $30,000 in grants and awards for YALSA members
YALSA has available over $30,000 worth of grants and awards for its members, including books valued at $25,000 in the Great Book Giveaway Competition. The deadline to apply is December 1....

YALSA will offer three online courses
YALSA is offering three online courses to run from October 2 to October 30: “New Technologies and New Literacies for Teens”; “Pain in the Brain: Adolescent Development and Library Behavior”; and “OutReaching Teens.” Registration closes September 25....

LAMA announces new online journal format
LAMA will begin online publication of its quarterly journal Library Administration and Management in December 2006. Planned LA&M enhancements include more flexible publishing schedules, web-based reader feedback options such as blogs, the use of color images and materials such as charts and graphs, podcasts, and vastly reduced storage requirements....

ACRL to sponsor an Emerging Leader
ACRL has announced its support of the Emerging Leaders 2007 initiative. ALA President Leslie Burger’s new program will “enable 100 new librarians to get on the fast track to ALA and professional leadership.”...

Seen Online

Cuban Kids coverMiami-Dade pulls a second Cuban book
A controversial children’s book about Cuba will be removed from at least one Miami-Dade elementary school following a review committee’s vote earlier in the week, according to a letter from the school’s principal. The committee, composed mostly of staff from Christina Eve Elementary in West Kendall, voted Wednesday to remove Cuban Kids—which paints a rosy picture of life under Fidel Castro—from the school’s library....
Miami Herald, Aug. 26

Secret of the Lost Mesa illustrationOld-time youth adventure books in vogue again
Those of a certain age may remember with fondness the books of their youth—those sweet, innocent boys’ and girls’ adventure books from the 1930s, 1940s, and 1950s. Pure as the driven snow, they were—their characters didn’t use drugs, have sex, or cuss. Demand for these relics appears to be on the increase, elevating them almost to collectors’ status. And that is forcing libraries to rethink how they will protect books they didn’t realize had that much value....
Fort Wayne (Ind.) News-Sentinel, Aug. 25

The joy of reading
Barbara Rowley offers tips on how to make learning to read a pleasure for babies, toddlers, preschoolers, and kindergartners—and what to look for when choosing books for them....
Parenting magazine, Sept.

San Mateo PL teen loungeNew San Mateo Public Library opens
It took two years, hundreds of workers, millions of dollars, and a whole lot of effort—and now the new San Mateo (Calif.) Main Library is open for the community to enjoy after a grand opening August 27. The new facility is designed with “green-building” standards, with more books, sitting areas, free WiFi wireless internet access, computer stations for children, three community meeting rooms, open space, and natural lighting....
San Mateo County (Calif.) Daily Journal, Aug. 28

UC to provide Google with 3,000 books a day for scanning
According to its contract (PDF file), the University of California will provide at least 2.5 million volumes to Google for scanning, starting with 600 books a day and ratcheting up over time to 3,000 a day. Materials pulled for scanning will be back on the shelves of their libraries within 15 days....
Chronicle of Higher Education, Aug. 25

Google logoGoogle now offers public domain books in PDF format
Starting August 30, readers can find new, free, downloadable PDF versions of some of the world’s greatest books on Google Book Search. The search engine company has expanded access to books that are out of copyright and have become public domain material. To easily find books to download, readers can select the “Full view” button when searching on Google Book Search, and then click on the “Download” button shown on public domain books....
Google, Aug. 30

Public domain books, ready for your iPod
Kara Shallenberg and her 10-year-old son, Henry, exhausted the audiobook collection at their library in Oceanside, Calif., five years ago. With Henry’s appetite for listening still strong, Ms. Shallenberg began to record herself reading his favorite books. Eventually she upgraded from a using a tape deck to burning CDs on her laptop computer. Last fall, she took her hobby to a wider audience....
New York Times, Aug. 25

Pass Christian branch, Harrison County Library SystemLibrary emerges as information hub in shattered Mississippi town
Library cards may have been washed away by Hurricane Katrina, but it doesn’t really matter. Patrons in Pass Christian, Mississippi, are making do with a makeshift library that was set up in a 28-by-72-foot trailer in November. Although small, the temporary library has 17,000 volumes, wireless internet access, computers and laptops, group meeting space, and three full-time staff to help people find whatever they need....
Oakland (Calif.) Tribune, Aug. 26

Schools rediscover libraries
School libraries in Tulsa (Okla.) Public Schools are undergoing a renaissance, thanks to a wave of voter-approved bond issues that began a decade ago. So far, a total of $34.43 million from 1996, 1999, 2001, and 2005 bond issues has been dedicated to library resources and the renovation and new construction of facilities....
Tulsa (Okla.) World, Aug. 29

Life in prison for library kidnapper
James Effler, 33, was sentenced to life in prison without parole on Friday, less than an hour after 12 Polk County jurors found him guilty of first-degree kidnapping for luring a 29-month-old toddler into a restroom and locking the door at the downtown Des Moines library last October 9....
Des Moines (Iowa) Register, Aug. 26

Hue’s first library fulfills a father’s dream
Nguyen Huu Chau Phan recently opened the first private library in Hue, Vietnam, to honor his father’s dying wishes to offer books to the public for free. According to unofficial statistics, Vietnam has more than 20 private libraries in all three regions of the country, most owned by affluent residents who built them without any help from the government....
Vietnam News Agency, Aug. 27

Actions and Answers

Hectic Pace logoOverheard at IFLA
Andrew Pace writes: “Okay, so I heard it second hand—I was nowhere near Seoul, Korea, for the 72nd IFLA conference when Sungdae Ahn, vice president and general manager of EBSCO Information Services-Korea, said, ‘Service, not content, is the new king.’ While she might not have been the first to use that phrase, I’m not quite sure what I think of it.”...
Hectic Pace, Aug. 29

Recently retired?
For a special section on retirement in the November issue, American Libraries wants your insight into how you cope, what surprised you, what you miss most, how you are still professionally active, or any advice you have for librarians facing retirement. Send 150 words by September 18 to Managing Editor Gordon Flagg.

Laura Bush Foundation announces grants to Gulf Coast school libraries (PDF file)
The Laura Bush Foundation for America’s Libraries awarded $540,000 in Gulf Coast School Library Recovery Initiative grants August 29 to 10 schools in Louisiana and Mississippi, making the total grants awarded over $1 million in the first five months of the initiative. Among the grantees are four high-school libraries in New Orleans....
Laura Bush Foundation for America’s Libraries, Aug. 29

Librarians make a difference, post-Katrina
When Anderson Cooper spoke at the ALA Annual Conference in June, he admonished those listening to go home and tell the story. Beverly Obert, Ellen Popit, and Pat Boze are three Illinois librarians who are following his suggestion....
Decatur (Ill.) Herald & Review, Aug. 29

Nebraska prison libraries seek book donations
The Nebraska Department of Correctional Services is in the process of updating Nebraska’s prison libraries. They are in need of new titles, but due to budgetary constraints, are unable to purchase as many books as are needed and so are seeking donations....
PLA Blog, Aug. 24

Library in Haret Hreik, a suburb of Beirut, in 2005 before it was severely damaged during the conflictUn blog pour les bibliothèques du Liban (in French)
Librarians in Lebanon and France have launched a blog to disseminate information on damage and disruptions to cultural institutions, particularly libraries, since the Hezbollah-Israeli conflict that began July 12. Recent postings include a summary of damages to the Lebanese publishing industry, an expression of concern by the International Committee of the Blue Shield, and a statement on the effects of the conflict on public libraries in southern Lebanon by Minister of Culture Imad Hashem....

New Yorker’s “Ask the Librarians” II
For die-hard New Yorker fans, the magazine’s head librarians, Jon Michaud and Erin Overbey, answer more questions like “What are some departments that no longer exist?” and “Why did it take so long to get a table of contents?”...
Emdashes, Aug. 29

National Preparedness Month logoSeptember is National Preparedness Month
The ALA Washington Office urges libraries—as community leaders—to take charge in making sure their communities are prepared in the event of an emergency or disaster. The latest surveys show that 83% of Americans are unprepared to help themselves in a disaster, while the National Heritage Health Index discovered that 70% of libraries did not have a disaster plan....
ALA Washington Office, Aug. 25

Wayne WiegandThe place of reading in libraries and library education
Charley Seavey interviews Wayne Wiegand, F. William Summers Professor of Library and Information Studies at Florida State University, on the Tiger Eye Reading Room series of the University of Missouri library school’s LiSRadio webcast (QuickTime or MP3 format)....
University of Missouri at Columbia, LiSRadio, Aug. 28

The need for a universal digital publication format
Terje Hillesund and Jon E. Noring claim that one major reason for the lack of interest in e-books is the current multitude of end-user text formats, some oriented towards print, others proprietary, and few optimized for sustained reading of text-intensive publications. The authors examine the pros and cons of a universal, reader-oriented text format for different types of critical text editions and digital libraries....
Journal of Electronic Publishing 9, no. 2 (Summer 2006)

The European Library Office is based in the building of the Koninklijke Bibliotheek, the National Library of The NetherlandsWhat is the European Digital Library?
The European Commission is coordinating work to build a European “digital library,” a common multilingual access point to Europe’s cultural heritage. Through this access point, users will be able to search in various languages different collections in Europe’s libraries, archives, and museums without having to visit multiple sites....
European Commission, Aug. 25

Hearing impairments in the workplace and the Americans with Disabilities Act
This FAQ explains how the ADA might apply to job applicants and employees with hearing impairments, including when an employer may ask an applicant or employee about a hearing impairment, what types of accommodations an individual with a hearing disability may need, and to what extent an employer must provide a reasonable accommodation to an individual with a hearing disability....
U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, July 26

Iron gall and ink corrosion
Libraries and archives around the globe contain a vast number of historical manuscripts, documents, official records, and music compositions that were executed in iron gall ink. Over time, depending on the recipe used in manufacture, and the storage conditions of the object, iron gall ink can cause the degradation of paper or other supports. This process is called “iron gall ink corrosion.”...
Ink Corrosion Website

The library catalog in the new discovery environment
“There is more incentive for the library to make the necessary linkages (to resource-sharing systems or to search engines)” because library patrons today “may be less willing to work hard to make links and connections between resources when they are on the network,” according to OCLC’s Lorcan Dempsey. He posits that “this shift is bound up with the difference between discovery (identifying resources of interest) and location (identifying where those resources of interest are actually available).”...
Ariadne, no. 48 (July)

The romance of hospital librarianship
“Everyone at the hospital where Jan Marlowe worked as Librarian was seething with excitement about the new consultant Ophthalmic surgeon. Jan liked him too, but found one of the patients more attractive still—or did she?” In 1990, Jan Figurski, of the London (Ont.) Health Sciences Centre, was standing at a table of paperbacks at a flea market, looking for some literary bargains, when she came across this hospital romance about a librarian. The image on the cover, intriguing yet appropriately chaste, has since graced T-shirts at CHLA conferences....
Canadian Health Libraries Association

Sponsor: Sirsi Dynix

Sirsi Dynix ad

The early registration deadline for the 2006 LITA National Forum in Nashville, October 26–29, has been extended to September 1. Visit the LITA website for a complete schedule and session descriptions.


Rhode Island School of Design, Providence. This is a key managerial position responsible for the operation of the Visual Resources Department, including digital images, the Slide Collection, the Picture Collection, videos, and films; and for providing leadership for the institutional transition from analog to digital collections....

for more career opportunities.

Ebling Library for the Health Sciences, University of Wisconsin at Madison
There are an estimated 117,341 libraries of all kinds in the United States today. The 2005 total was 117,664—with most of the difference coming from the number of special libraries going down, from last year’s 9,526 to 9,247 in 2006. Discover more library numbers in this ALA Library Fact Sheet.

FOLUSA is coordinating a national Friends of Libraries Week, October 22–28. Use the time to creatively promote your group in the community, to raise awareness, to promote membership, and to recognize the Friends for their help and support of the library.

4imprint products for ALA members

An ongoing project of the Office for Intellectual Freedom, Lawyers for Libraries is designed to build a nationwide network of attorneys committed to the defense of the First Amendment freedom to read. The next available session is at the Columbus Training Institute, Columbus, Ohio, November 3.

What do YOU think?

This year marks the 25th observance of Banned Books Week. Do you feel more or less pressure to remove materials from your school or library, or to not buy what might be considered controversial for your collection, as compared to five years ago?

Click here

This is an unscientific poll that reflects the opinions of only those AL Direct readers who have chosen to participate.

Results of the
August 23 poll:

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

Word processing:

(250 responses)

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

“The good news is that most technically savvy kids are going to show this soon-to-be law exactly the respect that it deserves. . . . The bad news, as Ars Technica points out, is that adults who would be capable of and inclined to help kids make safe online choices are now cut out of the loop, since kids are going to have to sneak around to use these sites. It’s abstinence education for computers, and likely to work exactly as well.”

—Angela Gunn, in a posting about the Deleting Online Predators Act on USA Today’s Tech_Space blog, July 28.

September 2006
AL cover
Stories inside include:

The Next Big Issue: Public Access to Research

How Academic Libraries Can Meet Student Info-Seeking Behaviors

Break Out the Pinstripe Suits: Are You Ready for the For-Profit World?

The eighth International School Library Day will be held on October 23. The aim of this special day is to draw attention to the importance of school libraries in the education of children. The International Association of School Librarianship has tips on activities and online resources.

Sept. 28–30:
American Printing History Association, annual conference, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia. “The Atlantic World of Print in the Age of Franklin.” Contact: Paul W. Romaine, or call 212-673-8770.

Oct. 19-20:
Learning in Libraries: A National Call to Action, Marriott New York East Side, New York. Presented by the Urban Libraries Council with support from the Wallace Foundation in conjunction with the New York, Brooklyn, and Queens Public Libraries. Contact: Urban Libraries Council, 847-866-9999.

Nov. 3–8:
American Society for Information Science and Technology, annual meeting, Austin, Texas. “Information Realities: Shaping the Digital Future for All.” Contact: ASIS&T.

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