The e-newsletter of the American Library Association | September 24,

U.S. & World News
ALA News
AL Focus
Booklist Online
Division News
Seen Online
Tech Talk
Actions & Answers

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AL Buyers Guide

U.S. & World News

Trenton library plans to close all its branches
A potential citywide budget deficit of as much as $28 million has led the Trenton (N.J.) Public Library to develop plans to close all four of its neighborhood branches. Library Director Kimberly Bray announced the library board’s decision, which followed an across-the-board 10% cut in funding to all city departments, in an email to staff September 10. Some 60 residents attended a September 23 city council meeting devoted to the closings—the third such meeting held over eight days—at which Bray described three options, all requiring staff layoffs....
American Libraries Online, Sept. 24

Cover of The New Joy of SexNampa board reverses itself on sex-ed books
The Nampa (Idaho) Public Library board voted unanimously September 5 to return to open circulation The Joy of Gay Sex and The New Joy of Sex in the latest move in a two-year battle between area social conservatives and freedom-to-read advocates regarding the books’ presence in the library collection. Declaring the sequestration policy to be in violation of the First Amendment, the August 25 letter (PDF files) from three pro-bono ACLU attorneys emphasized that free-speech “precepts apply with particular force to public libraries.”...
American Libraries Online, Sept. 17

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ALA News

Library card promotion at Knoxville (Tenn.) Public LibraryLibrary card registration reaches historic high
As Americans deal with a slumping economy, libraries in the United States are experiencing a dramatic increase in library card registration. According to a Harris poll released September 22 during Library Card Sign-up Month, 68% of Americans have a library card, the largest number since ALA started to measure library card usage in 1990....

Branford MarsalisLibrary Card sign-up podcast with Branford Marsalis
This year, in conjunction with its print PSA, the State Library of North Carolina is hosting a podcast with Library Card spokesperson and world-renowned saxophonist Branford Marsalis (right). During the podcast Marsalis urged North Carolina residents to visit their local library to get the smartest card—a library card. Marsalis’s podcast with library consultant Pam Jaskot can be heard on the North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources website....

Runner and text: "We're nearing the finish line."ALA launches website upgrade
Regular visitors to the ALA website will discover a more user-centered site with a new look and feel. The upgrade is the result of a two-year, member-driven redesign process. New features include: a homepage banner, with dropdown shortcuts to frequently requested areas of the site; a highlights section featuring images and timely information “above the fold”; a redesigned news section on the front page with three segments, updated frequently; and a new information architecture that doesn’t require users to be familiar with internal ALA structure in order to browse successfully....

Volunteer for an ALA committee
ALA President-elect Camila Alire is seeking applicants and nominees for appointments to 2009–2010 ALA and Council committees. The deadline for submitting applications and nominations is December 5. Applicants are required to complete an online committee volunteer form....

DebateWatch 2008 logoALA and DebateWatch
For the fourth consecutive presidential election, ALA will team up with the Commission on Presidential Debates to promote its DebateWatch initiative. DebateWatch is a voter education program that brings citizens together to watch televised presidential debates, discuss them, and share their reactions with the CPD. Find out how you can host a DebateWatch event in your library....

National Gaming Day logoNational Gaming Day activity resources
Hundreds of libraries across the country are preparing to celebrate ALA’s first annual National Gaming Day @ your library on November 15. ALA invites libraries of all types to join in the celebration by registering for two national gaming activities: a national video game tournament, and a board game challenge. Libraries also can develop their own activities by using free resources from the ALA Gaming Resources wiki....

AL Focus

Still from Banned Books Week videoCelebrate Bleeped Books Week
A library patron needs some books. Famous, award-winning, acclaimed books. Seems simple enough. And yet... This video (1:54) was produced in honor of Banned Books Week, September 27–October 4, in cooperation with the ALA Office for Intellectual Freedom. Starring OIF’s Bryan Campbell (right) and the ALA Library’s Valerie Hawkins....

Booklist Online logo

Cover of Night of the MoonFeatured review: Books for youth
Khan, Hena, Night of the Moon: A Muslim Holiday Story. Sept. 2008. 32p. Chronicle, hardcover (978-0-8118-6062-8).
The Muslim holiday of Ramadan gets a vibrant, visually exciting treatment here. Yasmeen, a seven-year-old Pakistani American girl, looks out the window with her mother, watching the moon’s first crescent. Mom explains how in the Islamic calendar the months follow the lunar cycle, and an excited Yasmeen realizes it’s time for Ramadan. In school, she shares with her classmates details of the holiday, such as the fast. At home, she shares meals with family. The holiday moves week by week, until finally the sky is moonless. “The Night of the Moon” means Ramadan is over, and the next day is the holiday of Eid....

Religion & Spirituality Top 10 graphicTop religion books for adults
Ray Olson writes: “Booklist’s warmest reviews of books on religion and spirituality during the last 12 months share one quality. They are, to a title, revelatory.” The list covers the whole gamut of belief, from Frank Schaeffer’s Crazy for God: How I Helped Found the Religious Right and Ruin America (Carroll & Graf, 2007) to Sharman Apt Russell’s Standing in the Light: My Life As a Pantheist (Basic, 2008)....

@ Visit Booklist Online for other reviews and much more....

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Division News

ACRL Seattle logoACRL opens registration for 14th National Conference
ACRL has opened registration for the ACRL 14th National Conference, “Pushing the Edge: Explore, Engage, Extend” to be held March 12–15, 2009, in Seattle. Registration materials are available online. Keynote speakers include Naomi Klein, Sherman Alexie, and Ira Glass. The division will implement more eco-friendly practices than ever before during this conference....

Adriana TrigianiAdriana Trigiani to keynote PLA Spring Symposium luncheon
American novelist Adriana Trigiani will present the keynote address at the Author Luncheon during the 2009 PLA Spring Symposium. The symposium will take place April 2–4, in Nashville, Tennessee, at the Renaissance Nashville Hotel and the Nashville Convention Center. Trigiani’s popular “Big Stone Gap” series details the lives and loves of the residents of a small coal-mining town in Southwest Virginia....

Teens' Top Ten button 2008Teens choose the winners
YALSA invites all teens to get out the vote for Teen Read Week, October 12–18. Teens can vote for their favorite books of the year in the annual Teens’ Top Ten poll beginning October 12. The 26 nominees for this year are listed online (PDF file), along with a web badge, bookmarks, flyers, and other promotional tools for librarians to promote the voting to the young adults visiting their libraries....

YALSA Midwinter events and awards
YALSA will kick off the ALA Midwinter Meeting with “Reaching Today’s Diverse Teens,” a January 23 institute that looks at serving immigrant teens. After the institute, YALSA will host a happy hour. Midwinter also marks the announcement of the 2009 Youth Media Awards—including the debut of the William C. Morris Award for the best book for young adults by a first-time author....

YALSA resources for LIS instructors
Stephanie Kuenn writes: “As you begin the new academic year, think about tools available from YALSA to help you reach the future librarians in your classrooms. With more than 30 million teens in the U.S. today, no matter what type of librarianship your students choose, they’ll be interacting with teen library users in some way. YALSA can provide handouts about its grants and awards, special events, initiatives, membership, and more, as well as swag including pens, posters, and pins.”...
YALSA Blog, Sept. 23

LLAMA project management institute in Denver
Learn how your projects can finish on time, under budget, at the level of quality you desire, and with everyone involved still speaking. Register for the LLAMA Midwinter Institute, “Mission Possible: Practical Project Management,” held 9 a.m.–5 p.m., January 23, at the ALA Midwinter Meeting in Denver....

LLAMA communications skills institute in Denver
Effective leaders in today’s libraries require an increasingly broad range of communications skills in order to meet the challenges of a rapidly changing profession. Register for the LLAMA Midwinter Institute, “Library Leadership: You Are How You Communicate,” held 9:30 a.m.–4 p.m., January 23, at the ALA Midwinter Meeting in Denver....

ARL/ACRL Institute deadline extended
A limited number of seats remain for the regional ARL/ACRL Institute on Scholarly Communication, hosted by the Orbis Cascade Alliance December 1–3, in Portland, Oregon. The application deadline has been extended to October 6. Acceptance to the institute is competitive....
Orbis Cascade Alliance


Let's Talk About It: Love and Forgiveness logo50 Love and Forgiveness program grant winners
The ALA Public Programs Office, in collaboration with the Fetzer Institute’s Campaign for Love and Forgiveness, announced that 50 libraries will receive $2,500 grants to support Let’s Talk About It: Love & Forgiveness reading and discussion programs. Though program funding was originally intended to support 30 libraries, due to an abundance of exceptional applications, the Fetzer Institute will generously fund a total of 50 libraries....

I Love My Librarian award logoDownload the I Love My Librarian award ad
Librarians can now download an ad that appeared in the New York Times for the Carnegie Corporation of New York/New York Times I Love My Librarian Award. Libraries can use the ad in flyers or signs to promote the award. Other promotional tools include a web badge, sample press release, flyers, and award logos....

Apply for the LLAMA John Cotton Dana PR Award
Entries for the 62nd John Cotton Dana Library Public Relations Award are being accepted now through December 4. The LLAMA John Cotton Dana Award honors outstanding library public relations programs that support a specific project, goal, or activity, or a sustained, ongoing program. Winning entries receive $5,000 for their organizations, courtesy of the award’s sponsor, the H.W. Wilson Company. For an entry form, checklist, guidelines, and tips, visit the H. W. Wilson website....

LITA scholarships
Applications are being accepted for three LITA scholarships in library and information science. The scholarships are designed to encourage the entry of qualified persons into the library automation field. Winners must have been accepted to an ALA accredited MLS Program. Application forms and instructions are available online....

Manuscripts needed for LITA Ex Libris award
LITA is offering an award for the best unpublished manuscript submitted by a student or students enrolled in an ALA-accredited graduate program. Sponsored by LITA and Ex Libris, the award consists of $1,000, publication in LITA’s refereed journal Information Technology and Libraries, and a certificate. The deadline for submission of the manuscript is February 28....

LITA Brett Butler Entrepreneurship award
Nominations are currently being sought for the LITA Brett Butler Entrepreneurship Award. This award is given annually to recognize a librarian or library that demonstrates exemplary entrepreneurship by providing innovative product(s) or service designed to meet the needs of the library world through the skillful application of information technology. The deadline for nominations is December 1....

Seen Online

Hurricane Ike library status updates
The Society of Southwest Archivists is assembling reports on libraries affected by Hurricane Ike on its blog. The Texas Library Association has a similar update, as well as a disaster relief fund site. Library Journal’s Norman Oder has an interview with John Augelli, executive director of the Rosenberg Library in Galveston on the extensive damage sustained by its collection....
Society of Southwest Archivists; Texas Library Association; Library Journal, Sept. 23

Flooding closes Indiana branch
The Hobart branch of the Lake County (Ind.) Public Library will remain closed indefinitely as officials assess damages caused by last week’s flooding. As much as four feet of water filled the lower level of the library, which contained the mechanical equipment room, a meeting room, a community room with a kitchen and a Portage Adult Education Learning Center....
Merrillville (Ind.) Post-Tribune, Sept. 24

Cover of Heather Has Two MommiesGay-lesbian titles donated to Wasilla Library
Responding to news reports about then-Wasilla, Alaska, Mayor Sarah Palin in 1996 asking a librarian how she would feel about banning books, a San Francisco man has donated two children’s books dealing with homosexuality to the Wasilla Library. The news—old news in the Mat-Su Valley, but new in the Lower 48—prompted Mike Petrelis, a 49-year-old who files Freedom of Information requests for a living, to send the library Heather Has Two Mommies and Daddy’s Roommate, both children’s books that explain the gay lifestyle....
Wasilla (Alaska) Mat-Su Valley Frontiersman, Sept. 22

Still from video of Mozart score arrangementUnknown Mozart score discovered in Nantes library
Music scholars were celebrating September 18 after the municipal library of Nantes, France, announced it had stumbled upon a previously unknown score
in its multimedia collection that had been composed by Mozart around 1787. Library staff came across the yellowing piece of paper in 2007 when they were sifting through their archives. Although it had been cataloged as part of the institution’s collection in 1870, the work had subsequently been forgotten. Listen to (0:33) the score played on a harpsichord....
The Guardian (U.K.), Sept. 19; City of Nantes, Sept. 19

New multicultural library to honor slaying victim
Officials at Woodrow Wilson Elementary School, South Salt Lake, Utah, announced plans for a new multicultural library, something they hope will go a long way toward educating their students who speak 48 different languages. The Hser Ner Moo Memorial Library, named for a 7-year-old student from Myanmar who was killed in her South Salt Lake apartment complex earlier this year, will be housed in the school....
Salt Lake City Deseret News, Sept. 24

Cover of Don't Sweat the Small Stuff about MoneyFairfax County takes a hit
The biggest single theft of books in the history of the Fairfax County (Va.) Public Library system took place this month at the Fairfax City Regional Library. On September 9, “an unknown suspect” stole an estimated 150 books from the branch. The books ranged in value from $6 to $40. One book was titled Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff about Money, and another was 25 Days to Better Thinking and Better Living....
Washington Post, Sept. 21

Dracut library partners with local bank
The Washington Savings Bank is partnering with the Moses Greeley Parker Memorial Library in Dracut, Massachusetts, as part of a community outreach effort. Customers who activate a debit card through the bank will receive a $25 cash reward, and Friends of the Dracut Library will also receive $25 for each card. Customers also receive up to 20 cents on most debit-card purchases and the library receives an additional 3 cents. “It adds up,” said bank president and CEO Jim Hogan....
Dracut (Mass.) Valley Dispatch, Sept. 19

Cover of DeweyThis library cat has nine lives
Dewey Readmore Books, the cat who lived at the Spencer (Iowa) Public Library from 1988 until his death in 2006, is getting more media attention than ever. Written by former Spencer Library Director Vicki Myron with Bret Witter, Dewey: The Small-Town Library Cat Who Touched the World (Grand Central) was published this week and already there is talk of a movie deal. “Helen Hunt. Meryl Streep. I don’t care,” says Myron of who might play her. But who will star as Dewey?...
USA Today, Sept. 17

The undoing of the DDC
In the sober, settled atmosphere of a library there is a radical movement afoot that is knocking books off their long-established shelves and throwing Dewey out the window. At 6 a.m. on a Sunday morning, two bold and daring librarians are stirring at the Frankfort (Ill.) Public Library, shuffling books and tearing off those time-honored Dewey Decimal Classification numbers. Frankfort is one of the first libraries in the U.S. to retrofit its collection and go Dewey-free, eliminating the numbers and categorizing nonfiction books by topic....
Chicago SouthtownStar, Sept. 21

FBI recovers second book stolen from Hayes Library
FBI agents recovered September 17 the second of two books taken in June from the Rutherford B. Hayes Presidential Center library in Fremont, Ohio. Authorities said the rare book commonly known as the Freeman Code was sold for $35,000 to someone in England through a book dealer in Philadelphia after Joshua McCarty and Angela Bays, both of Columbus, Ohio, stole it. U.S. Assistant Prosecutor Tom Secor said the Freeman Code is now in the hands of FBI agents in Texas....
Toledo (Ohio) Blade, Sept. 19

Lancaster County stores photos with patron records
Some parents fear the Library System of Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, might put children at risk by storing their photographs in a database. In October 2007, the system made it possible for the libraries it serves to take and store photos of patrons with their records. The new technology is intended to keep cardholders from getting stuck with fees incurred by someone else using their cards without permission. Of the 14 libraries in the system, eight take photos but don’t require them, five do not take photos, and only one, the Elizabethtown Public Library, requires a photo....
Lancaster (Pa.) Sunday News, Sept. 21

Minnesota PlanetariumMinneapolis Library planetarium approved
The Hennepin County (Minn.) Board has approved a proposal for a planetarium atop the Minneapolis Central Library. The project would occupy 38,000 square feet of space on the fifth and sixth floors of the library. About 11,000 square feet would be devoted to public displays and exhibits. There would also be a 200-seat domed theater, as well as a number of attractions for local students and the general public....
Minneapolis–St. Paul Business Journal, Sept. 24

Investment losses prompt two library layoffs
The roller coaster ride of the stock market has made dents in many a financial portfolio in recent months. One victim is the Carnegie Library of Homestead, Pennsylvania, where the board has laid off the executive director and library director because the library’s endowment lost $300,000 on its investments. The board chose in August to lay off Executive Director Kate Granneman and Library Director Tyrone Ward rather than reduce hours or services to the public. The move will save the library about $100,000 annually....
Pittsburgh (Pa.) Post-Gazette, Sept. 18

Connecticut libraries share record gift
The Community Foundation of Southeastern Connecticut is celebrating 25 years of giving with a special gift to southeastern Connecticut: a $1.5-million grant to 13 libraries across the region. The grant, formally announced September 18 during the community foundation’s gala at Connecticut College, will offer each library up to $100,000 for innovative projects of their choice, from literacy programs to technology offerings....
New London (Conn.) Day, Sept. 18

Sacramento library whistle-blower files pay claim
The library worker who tried to warn officials about an overbilling scandal in the Sacramento Public Library three years ago before it broke into the open has filed complaints alleging that management retaliated by freezing her pay and taking away duties. Accounts Payable Clerk Diane Boerman says in her complaints that her attempt at whistle-blowing resulted in her suffering “damage to reputation, emotional distress, loss of income, and medical expenses.”...
Sacramento (Calif.) Bee, Sept. 16

Transgender woman wins lawsuit against LC
A federal judge ruled September 19 that a former special forces commander was discriminated against when officials at the Library of Congress revoked a job offer after learning she was transitioning from being a man to a woman. The ruling came in a lawsuit filed in 2005 by the American Civil Liberties Union on behalf of Diane Schroer after she was denied a job as a terrorism research analyst at the Library of Congress’s Congressional Research Service. Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) denounced LC in a September 23 letter and asked it not to appeal....
Washington Post, Sept. 19; The Hill, Sept. 23

Indian terror code: Book=bomb, library=blast site
Atif, the alleged Mujahideen militant killed in a September 19 police raid in Jamia Nagar, India, had formulated a unique code language to plan and execute the serial blasts in Delhi on September 13, say police sources. Five suspected militants revealed that in their code, blast sites were called “library,” and the bombs were called kitaab, or “book.”...
Indian Express (Mumbai), Sept. 24

Tech Talk

PrintWhatYouLike logoMake any web page printer friendly
PrintWhatYouLike is a useful service to save ink while printing web pages. The tool allows you to customize printing of any web page by removing the sidebars, footers, and extraneous elements. Enter the URL, hit enter, and the page opens with sidebar containing editing tools. Delete the elements you don’t want, like background images. You can also increase the text size and change the font type to improve the readability of the web page....
Technology Bites, Sept. 21

Google Book Search API released
Google now offers a book search API which allows other sites (like libraries) to embed book previews, query for certain book information, or just link to books at Book Search. In the blog post announcing this, Google mentions it had already partnered with several online book sites who use its widget-style preview functionality—like this page which shows a “Google preview” button. Clicking the button opens a box that lets you page through parts of the book, search, and zoom....
Google Blogoscoped, Sept. 23; Inside Google Book Search, Sept. 22

T-Mobile G1 phoneThe Android phone T-Mobile G1
Philipp Lenssen writes: “T-Mobile’s G1 phone was officially announced September 23. It’s going to be the first mobile phone based on Android, the Google-and-partners powered (and supposedly soon to be open source released) mobile operating system. T-Mobile says the phone has a touch screen, a keyboard, and includes different apps, like Google Maps or Gmail, with data synchronization features to Google’s tools. The HTC-built G1 comes with a 3-megapixel camera and is wi-fi enabled.” The phone goes on sale October 22. Watch the promotional video (1:12). Be sure to check the Top 10 G-1 disappointments....
Google Blogoscoped, Sept. 23; YouTube, Sept. 23; PC World, Sept. 24

OverDrive now works with Zune
Sue Polanka writes: “If you are one of the 8,500 libraries using the OverDrive Media Console for digital audiobooks, you now have a new feature—compatibility with Microsoft’s Zune. Both DRM-free and DRM-protected (Digital Rights Management) audiobooks are compatible. This now opens up the direct transfer of audiofiles to Zune, iPod, and virtually all other mp3 devices.”...
No Shelf Required, Sept. 23; OverDrive, Sept. 23

Windows 7 calculator?The wonderful world of Windows 7
Doug Aamoth writes: “Here’s a little info to prepare you for the arrival of the post-Vista Windows 7. Sure, it’s still well over a year away and sure, all this stuff could change at the drop of a hat, but let’s just run with it. An early build of Windows 7 may contain the following: a fancier calculator (right); the Office 2007 Ribbon thing may cross over into WordPad and MS Paint; a lightweight version of Windows Media Player; and My Documents will be called Libraries. Come on Microsoft, there’s no need to rename that stuff all the time.”...
CrunchGear, Sept. 22

Gospelr logoTwitter for Christians
Don Reisinger writes: “‘First things first: Praise God.’ That’s how Gospelr starts out its announcement that the company’s microblogging service is officially ready for users to sign up and ‘spread the word.’ The site prides itself on being the world’s first ‘Ministry Microblogging’ tool for those who want to share thoughts, ideas, words of encouragement, prayer requests, daily scripture readings, and much more. Gospelr is available now for those looking to try it out.”...
TechCrunch, Sept. 18


Cover of Candy Licker, by Noire, a street-lit classicGossip girls and ghetto girls
Kati Nolfi writes: “Why are so many librarians—advocates of the uncensored right to read anything on all points of view—panic-stricken over teens reading street lit? As Amy Pattee wrote in the July 2008 issue of School Library Journal, ‘There’s no getting around it: urban fiction forces many of us out of our comfort zones—and some librarians worry that by simply offering street lit, they’re endorsing its unsavory actions.’ I don’t quite understand this. As librarians we are never endorsing anything that is on our shelves. We are providing free access to myriad ideas through information. Why would street lit be any different?”...
ForeWord Magazine, Sept. 12

Maghound screenThe Netflix model for magazines
Maghound is Time Inc.’s new service that lets the consumer choose which magazines to receive each month—with no hassles, at three prices (three titles for $5 a month, five for $8, seven for $10). This may not save the magazine industry, but it’s a good product for anyone who likes magazines. Assuming Maghound takes off, it will offer a pure look at what consumers want to read....
Gawker, Sept. 16

Iago, from Shakespeare's Othello, made #4 on the listThe 50 greatest villains in literature
A panel of 11 critics writes: “Compiling a list of the 50 Greatest Villains in Literature, without too much recourse to comics and children’s books, proved trickier than we’d imagined—but gosh it was fun. It’s perhaps the nature of grown-up literature that it doesn’t all that often have villains, in the sense of coal-black embodiments of the principle of evil. Yet even writers as subtle as Vladimir Nabokov have spiced their work with a fiend or two. And here they are.”...
The Telegraph (U.K.), Sept. 20

AL Buyers Guide ad

Actions & Answers

Taking a picture from the back of the room shows only the speaker’s face, not the listeners’ faces. Photo courtesy of Western Kentucky University LibrariesThe law concerning photos taken at your library
Bryan Carson writes: “Over the past two decades, there has been a substantial increase in the number of programs that libraries sponsor. It seems natural to document events by taking photographs. Pictures can be a powerful way of justifying a programming budget and can also be useful in attracting people to future lectures and programs. However, there are a few legal issues relating to photography that librarians need to be aware of, particularly the rights of privacy and publicity. In some situations, using a photograph of an identifiable person could be a one-way ticket to a lawsuit.”...
Marketing Library Services 22, no. 5 (Sept./Oct.)

Another case for gaming in libraries
Jenny Levine writes: “A September 7 report (PDF file) on the Civic Potential of Video Games by the Mills College Civic Engagement Research Group literally screamed ‘libraries’ as I was reading it. While the recent Pew report has great statistics, this one delves deeper into those numbers. It actually makes a very strong case for gaming in libraries, even though it doesn’t mention us at all. We can now definitely add civic engagement to its list of benefits. The ROI on offering gaming just keeps getting better and better.”...
The Shifted Librarian, Sept. 24

Cover of Andre Kostelanetz Greatest Hits albumKostelanetz papers donated to LC
Papers of Russian-American conductor and arranger André Kostelanetz (1901–1980) are being donated to the Library of Congress by the musician’s estate, marking a significant expansion of the collection Kostelanetz provided to the library during his lifetime. Kostelanetz was a major figure in U.S. popular music and on radio for half a century. The new donation consists of 73 containers of correspondence, scrapbooks, photos, clippings, posters, business papers, posters, sound recordings, and materials related to his USO tours with his wife, opera star Lily Pons....
Library of Congress, Sept. 19

Infovell logoWhen Google isn’t enough
When you need to delve deep into a subject, sometimes Google just won’t do. What you really need is a research engine that explores the unindexed reaches of the Deep Web. For that, there’s now Infovell, “the world’s research engine.” This new subscription-based software-as-a-service (SaaS) engine scours through open-access repositories of information like PubMed Central and the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office Claims, but it also allows access to scholarly journals such as those from Oxford University Press, Sage, Taylor and Francis, Annual Reviews, and Mary Ann Liebert Publications. Infovell is available for a 30-day free trial....
ReadWriteWeb, Sept. 18

Hakia logoHakia calls for help
Semantic search engine hakia announced September 22 an open call to librarians and information professionals to participate in a new program to unlock credible and free resources to web searchers. Currently, hakia is generating credibility-stamped results for health and medical searches to guide users towards credible web content. These results come from websites vetted by the Medical Library Association. Now, hakia is aiming to further its coverage to all topics, with the participation of other librarians and information professionals....
Hakia, Sept. 22

Read it Loud! Foundation logoCenter for the Book promotes daily reading to youngsters
The Center for the Book in the Library of Congress and the Read It Loud! Foundation have formed a partnership to encourage parents and other caregivers to read to their children daily. The goal of the partnership is to inspire 5 million parents and caregivers to read daily to their children by 2014. The program seeks participation by anyone who has children in his or her life and also will encourage persons with disabilities—parents, caregivers, and children—to participate....
Library of Congress, Sept. 23

The library of the Russian State University in MoscowRussian libraries up close
Kate Gordon writes: “In November 2007, I was honored to join a delegation of academic librarians on a nine-day adventure to Moscow and St. Petersburg, Russia. The trip offered the opportunity to learn first-hand differences and similarities in the world of college and research libraries of our quite different countries. Information was, at times, challenging to interpret. What was clear was these libraries were the result of centuries of dedicated staff who professionally obligated themselves to preserve materials.”...
Newspoke, Apr./June 2008

Military OneSource logoMilitary libraries launch media roundtable
Military librarians came together September 18 to announce new additions to the Military OneSource online library. This has been a joint collaboration of all branches of the military in an effort to increase the online library offerings to all service members and their families. The new resources are a custom collection compiled by several vendors and consist of a combination of recreation and self-help material that comes in different formats including audio, interactive, and text....
District Dispatch, Sept. 19

Planetarium space in Jay S. Walker's home libraryA personal library like no other
Jay S. Walker, the entrepreneur who founded and Walker Digital, built his New England house in 2002 specifically to accommodate his massive library. With the help of architect Mark Finlay, Walker commissioned decorative etched glass, dynamic lighting, and even a custom soundtrack that sets the tone for the cerebral adventures hidden within this cabinet of curiosities. The massive book by the planetarium window (above) is actually a specially commissioned, internally lit, 2.5-ton Clyde Lynds sculpture. It’s meant to embody the spirit of the library: the mind on the right page, the universe on the left....
Wired Magazine 16, no. 10 (Oct.)

Aren’t you scared?
Jill Merritt writes: “This is the question everyone always asks when you tell them you work in a prison library. The next being, ‘Have you ever seen Shawshank Redemption?’ The question is asked with all innocence and with no real aspect of what it is like to work in a prison. So you have to laugh and tell them what it is really like. Here is my answer when people ask me.”...
Institutional Library Services, Sept. 22

Wikia Green logoWikia Green
Wikia Green asks users to sign up and be a part of creating a green wiki guide. Created by Jimmy Wales, cofounder of Wikipedia, the goal is to offer more lifestyle tips, product options, and how-to’s. The content differs from that on Wikipedia in three main ways: Content is written from a green point of view, is focused on things you can do, and is more accessible and relevant to an average reader....
Wikia Green

Library 2.0 and the problem of hate speech
Margaret Brown-Sica and Jeffrey Beall write: “It’s possible for library users to abuse library 2.0 applications by uploading words, pictures, or other content that constitute hate speech. Universities and colleges today view hate speech as outside the realm of protected speech because it violates the terms of most codes of conduct and merits decisive action. Also, many libraries are big players in the overall college mission to value and promote diversity. Perhaps nothing can poison this more than a library website filled with racist, homophobic, or other defamatory speech.”...
Electronic Journal of Academic and Special Librarianship 9, no. 2 (Summer)

Espresso Book Machine at University of MichiganUniversity of Michigan goes Espresso
The University of Michigan’s Shapiro Undergraduate Library in Ann Arbor became the first university library to install an Espresso Book Machine, from On Demand Books of New York. The machine produces perfect-bound, high-quality paperback books on demand, in this case out-of-copyright books from the university’s digitized collections. At a cost of about $10 per book, the service is available to researchers, students, and the public....
University of Michigan, Sept. 17

Burning bookmark from Gama-GoJust the thing for Banned Books Week
San Francisco–based design and gadget supplier Gama-Go is selling a burning bookmark perfect for using with any incendiary, outrage-provoking, banned book. As their promotion says, “Wedge it snugly between the pages of your favorite edition of Fahrenheit 451 and let this stylized flame illuminate you quickly to your saved spot.” Retails for a smoldering $6....

Still from Wario Land: Shake It! videoWario Land game on YouTube
It looks like Nintendo teamed up with YouTube to produce some intriguing special effects for this promotion of its Wii-based Wario Land: Shake It! game, which was released in North America September 22. Make sure you watch the full video (0:45) to see what happens....
YouTube, Sept. 19

ALA 2009 Midwinter Meeting logo, Denver

ALA Midwinter Meeting, Denver, January 23–28.

Erica SpindlerFrancine Mathews
Mary Jane ClarkNancy Atherton

Join four women of mystery, January 23, 4–5:15 p.m., at the Midwinter Exhibits Round Table Author Forum. Erica Spindler, Francine Mathews, Mary Jane Clark, and Nancy Atherton will discuss “The Art of Revealing ‘Who Did It.’”

Cover of Teen Craft Projects

The Hipster Librarian’s Guide to Teen Craft Projects offers a unique way for teens to claim their identities and gain confidence at the library. It’s not your grandmother’s crafting project! Instead, hip librarians and their teen patrons can engage in the hottest new DIY way of life, recycling everything from discarded books to Altoids tins. Tina Coleman and Peggie Llanes offer detailed step-by-step instructions for a dozen unique craft items. NEW! From ALA Editions.

In this issue
September 2008

Cover of September 2008 issue

The Future of Privacy

A Privacy Victory in Vermont

ALA Award Winners

National Book Festival 2008 poster

At the 2008 National Book Festival, on the National Mall, Washington, D.C., 10 a.m.–5:30 p.m., September 27 (rain or shine), celebrate the joys of reading and lifelong literacy with the Library of Congress, First Lady Laura Bush, and more than 70 authors. Now in its 8th year, the festival is free and open to the public.

Career Leads from
ALA Joblist logo

Librarian, World Maritime Library, Malmö, Sweden, established in 1983 by the International Maritime Organization, a specialized agency of the United Nations. WMU has gained an excellent reputation as a global center for the provision of advanced education, research, and consultancy to the international maritime community. The post involves active and hands-on involvement on a daily basis with the work of the library and the needs of its clients. It includes the management of the library’s services, the acquisition of books and material, the cataloguing and classification of this material, forward planning for library services, and budgetary preparation and advice....

@ More jobs...

Digital Library of the Week

Cave in which Daniel Boone spent the winter of 1769-70. C. Frank Dunn Photographs Collection, 1900-1954. Kentucky Historical Society. KNU:1987ph2:3402

The Kentuckiana Digital Library was built to enhance scholarship, research, and lifelong learning through the establishment of access to shared digital archival collections in the state of Kentucky. Hosted by the University of Kentucky, the digital library includes over 80,000 photographic images, 100,000 newspaper pages, 230,000 book pages, hundreds of oral histories, and maps documenting the history and heritage of Kentucky. Participating repositories include the Kentucky Historical Society, Berea College, the Filson Historical Society, Murray State University, and the University of Louisville.

Do you know of a digital library collection that we can mention in this AL Direct feature? Tell us about it.

Public Perception
How the World
Sees Us

“I’d rather have one great library than five.”

—Trenton (N.J.) Mayor Douglas H. Palmer on plans to close four neighborhood branches in the wake of a city budget crisis, Trenton (N.J.) Times, Sept. 17, 2008.

National Reading Group Month logo

The Women’s National Book Association is launching its second National Reading Group Month in October to promote reading groups and to celebrate the joy of shared reading. Events featuring reading group favorite authors are planned nationwide in the association’s chapters, including Boston, Detroit, Los Angeles, Nashville, New York City, San Francisco, Washington, D.C., and the newly formed Seattle chapter.

Ask the ALA Librarian

Book donations

Q. Due to staff shortages in recent years, our collection hasn’t been weeded in a while. Recently we were able to start the process again with some volunteers and new hires. In years past, we have held a book sale for discards, amounting to a book cart or two. But this time we are facing a much larger number of discards, and we don’t have the space to sell all of these to the patrons. We’d be willing to donate them. Do you know of anyone that could use them?

A. We’re glad you’ve been able to return to weeding, which is an important (if sometimes misunderstood) step in collection development. Our main Collection Development page can provide further assistance, including the Collection Evaluation—and De-Selection (Weeding) page, which lists several resources for completing a weeding project, along with the names of organizations that accept library discards. From the ALA Professional Tips wiki.

@ The ALA Librarian welcomes your questions.


Oct. 8–11:

North American Cartographic Information Society,
Annual Meeting, Holiday Inn Downtown at the Park, Missoula, Montana.

Oct. 19–21:
New England Library Association,
Annual Conference, Radisson Hotel Manchester, New Hampshire. “Taking Charge of Change.”

Oct. 21:
National Coalition Against Censorship,
Annual Celebration of Free Speech and Its Defenders, Rubin Museum of Art, New York City.

Nov. 5–8:
National Association for the Education of Young Children,
Annual Conference, Dallas Convention Center.

Nov. 5–9:
American Society for Theatre Research and Theatre Library Association,
Annual Conference, Park Plaza Hotel, Boston. “Unsettling Theatre: Migration, Map Memory.”

Nov. 6–7:
National Council of Teachers of Mathematics,
Regional Conference, Reno-Sparks Convention Center, Nevada.

Nov. 6–8:
National Church Library Association,
Biennial Conference, Bloomington, Minnesota.

Nov. 12–14:
Digital Library Federation,
Fall Forum, Westin Providence, Rhode Island.

Nov. 18–20:
Society for Scholarly Publishing,
Fall Seminars, ASAE Center, Washington, D.C.

Nov. 20–21:
2nd National Student Safety and Security Conference,
Rio All Suite Hotel, Las Vegas, Nevada.

Nov. 20–21:
Middle East Librarians Association,
Annual Meeting, Library of Congress Thomas Jefferson Building.

Nov. 20–23:
National Council of Teachers of English,
Annual Convention, San Antonio, Texas. “Because Shift Happens: Teaching in the Twenty-First Century.”

Dec. 8:
National Federation of Advanced Information Services,
Library of Congress. “Making the Web Work for Science:
The Impact of e-Science and the Cyberinfrastructure.”

Dec. 9–10:
Northeast Document Conservation Center,
InterContinental Chicago Hotel. “Persistence of Memory: Sustaining Digital Collections.”

Dec. 27–30:
Modern Language Association,
Annual Convention, Hilton San Francisco.

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