this is,okay?

links : about : me : contact

Even the most misfitting child
Who's chanced upon the
library's worth
Sits with the genius of the Earth
And turns the key
to the whole world

- Ted Hughes

my booklist

word of the day?

NYT login

user: librariansrule
pass: yestheydo

search me

jan : feb : mar
apr : may : jun

jan : feb : mar
apr : may : jun
jul : aug : sep
oct : nov : dec

apr : may : june
jul : aug : sep
oct/nov : dec


Hi. Thanks for reading and sending me all sorts of great links. I am truly blessed with an astute and interested readership. I'll be travelling for the next two weeks or so and updates will be sparse. Please check out the links page for other fine library webstuffs.

The one thing all public-service staff fear. [ thanks david ]

Baltimore plans new library while closing five branches. Some of the locals have started up a discussion forum about it. [ thanks rebecca ]

Amazon sells remaindered books as "new" to unsuspecting customers. [ thanks ryan ]

Online ILL. Tracking your book is as easy as tracking your UPS package. [ thanks pete. ]

Please read this article about one library deciding to institute an Internet Safety Policy. Please note that at three points, the article alludes to what was found, or could be found online, with vague assertions and no real information. "A page full of pornography" found by someone searching [where? how?] for nursery rhymes, or thinking about the possibility of seeing "something'weird'" does not help us understand the issue or necessarily make us any more informed about the reality of searching for information on the Internet. There are some things to be aware of, but making everyone afraid of the hundred foot monster in the closet, without opening the door, is just needless sensationalism. [ libgeek ]


Eudora Welty, RIP.

"An Australian librarian will spend at least seven years behind bars for an attempt to break her lover out of jail with a hijacked helicopter." [ thanks fi ]

Aaaahhhh! Okay, I hate change, admittedly, but I liked Library Journal's old look better than this. Having to sign for access to news blurbs, being asked for your religious preference [even though it's optional] and just general crappy site design. They didn't even keep the old URL. You can submit letters to the editor here.

"A 50-year-old Philadelphia school librarian was foreman of the jury that decided the fate of the Philadelphia mob."

Nader goes after search engines. And if you want to know more about new kid on the block, Alternet, here's an article for you. [ thanks jen & marylaine ]

JSTOR -- a boon for researchers or a catalyst to the demise of print collections? "In [Nicholson] Baker's grim vision, when the paper journals are mostly gone, JSTOR will hold a monopoly on their scholarly information. 'No matter whether it's a nonprofit or a for-profit,' he says, 'anytime you have one place being the sole source of a very important stream of information, you're going to have problems with the price down the line.'" [ thanks jen ]

"....using filtering technology to block inappropriate material from children was similar to the decisions librarians make every day when they decide which books to buy.... adult users who are unable to access Internet material they need can ask a librarian to unblock it." is this a solution? Judges hear arguments against Childrens Internet Protection Act in PA.

Marylaine talks about male librarians. [ libgeek ]

Some proposed solutions for damage control post-Tasini. [ thanks marylaine ]


"We really do care about serving our patrons... it's just that sometimes we can't believe what happens in the biz..."

If you're in Baltimore, lucky you. You also get to go to the Alternative Press Center Library. [ thanks jude ]

"The Seattle Times, the San Jose Mercury News, the Chicago Tribune, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and the Boston Globe have all put their papers on a diet by cutting back on book reviews. Even the nation's most influential Sunday book supplement, the New York Times Book Review, killed two pages, resulting in the loss of six "In Brief" write-ups and one full-page review." [ thanks rebecca ]

ASL Access helps place ASL videos in public libraries with the help of their volunteers and your community. [ thanks chris ]

Cheryl Zobel has done a good research paper on the ins and outs of having zines in public libraries. [ libgeek ]


Lefty Library: " I think that we as activists are a legitimate, even critical part of history, and that history doesn't belong solely to elected politicians or CEOs or generals or friends of the publishers of big newspapers. Too often, we don't realize our own value, let alone demand that others recognize it." [ thanks chris ]

Old library bulding for sale. [ libgeek ]

Is Harry Potter a classic? Dicussion of that and other questions in tandem with the publication of The Parents Guide to the best Books for Children. "We should all sing the praises of great librarians, the ones who said 'If you like that, try this.'" [ thanks christy ]

Summer reading lists for people with short attention spans. History of Shit is on this list, Nuff said. [ newpages ]

"The library staff here is totally psycho___they are all alien agency and all they do is communicate telepathically and torture me using the alien agency." [ thanks nicole ]

Live in or near Baltimore? Know about BookThing? "By the spring of 1998 Wattenberg was making trips to poorer neighborhoods on his days off, laying out trays of books on a corner and hollering "Free books!" to passersby. Last year he rented basement space in a rowhouse a block from his own home and gave up bartending for the grubby work of finding and giving books full time." and "The Book Thing is a non-profit organization that arose out of my obsession. I realized that it gained me nothing to acquire books, box them and have them sit in my living room." [ thanks mariam ]

Actual sex in library, etc etc etc. "It is well noted that libraries often engender a level of passion. A lot of people meet partners or lovers in libraries." [ thanks all ]

Fantasy sex in library. [ thanks graham ]

The Librarian: Independent Good Sex Taker according to the SparkMatch dating game. [ juice ]

As you all know, the librarians rock. [ thanks mk ]

Joke: "Street-smart teen Larry Witherspoon was found dead Monday at the Michigan Avenue branch of the Chicago Public Library, his urban know-how useless to him in the unfamiliar environment. "Unfortunately, the skills Larry had developed on the mean streets of Chicago's South Side did him no good in a place like this," librarian Mary Ross said. "Hypothetically, he could have located a book on library survival skills, had he known what the Dewey Decimal system was and how to use it." [ thanks all ]


Authors Guild and Writers Union make plans to sue the New York Times. If you are in NYC on the 19th, there will be a large anti-Times rally at the NYT Building at noon.

Metafilter contributor Michael Brown chimes in about the publisher-librarian relationship. "...there are small publishers out there who really do publish for the love of it... they should be supported at every turn. But whenever I hear the big publishers boo-fucking-hooing over and over again about how libraries are restricting their freedom to make more fucking money, I just want to piss all over them."


DAMN THESE STUPID LIBRARY RULES! Do any library administrators read this site? Can you do something about this? Was Nicholson Baker right about all of you?! [ libgeek ]

"The one thing that really disturbs me about America," he said... "is that people don't like to read." Keith Richards tells it like it is. [ thanks david ]

Susan Calcari, founder of the Internet Scout Project, RIP. [ camworld ]

"McDonald's includes little plastic plaything incentives in Happy Meals in order to persuade kids into nudging parents into buying them unhealthy food. Are libraries feeling compelled to follow their example?" Dubious reading incentives at BPL. [ thanks dan ]

Librarian punches patron. [ thanks sarah ]

Making movies in the library: "The most stressful shoot was the library sequence where the librarian supervising the location had to be distracted and led away while our actors got nude and simulated sex. The librarian kept trying to hang around the set and the actors became adept at slipping in and out of clothes every time he would reappear without notice. At one point the librarian caught on to what was going on and started to scream, saying, "You are making a perverted porno." Jangu Sethna expertly handled the situation by reasoning with the librarian, "How can Wadia Movietone, the maker of great Indian cinema films for over 60 years, be involved in something so base!" The librarian then accepted our lie that we were making a social service film about ragging on college campuses! I had to sign a letter stating the same and only then did the librarian agree to let us proceed. " [ thanks graham ]


Library headlines that should be illegal: Library is Closed Book for Schools. In other words, schools refuse books that are "too difficult" for their students. [ thanks michael ]

Son of Illegal Library Headlines: Shh! There's No Talking in the Papyrus Section. [ thanks celia ]

Librarian Pat Scales has written a book called Teaching Banned Books. "The danger is not in reading about these issues," she says. "The danger is in not talking about them." [ thanks amylinda ]

"The mission of libraries is to ensure access," she said. "The nature of copyright is to restrict access. There's a real tension there." Librarians' role as "information equalizers" is challenged by new copyright ruling. [ thanks michael ]

If something is available -- for a fee -- from the private sector, is the government duplicating efforts by making it available for free? Yes, says House of Reps as they try to shut down PubScience. [ thanks david ]

Top officials at suburban Detroit public library are being asked to resign by the mayor over possible misuse of library funds. [ thanks kate ]


Tasini not satisfied with ruling yet. Now he is after compliance. "Through threats and intimidations, the Times is trying to get beneath the Supreme Court decision," Tasini charges. "We won't stand for that." [ stuff ]

Buffy spin-off featuring... The Librarian!

This has graced these pages before, but it's still a great link: large list of "Ask A...." sites. Ask Jake the Sea Dog, Ask an Astrobiologist, etc.

Internet Scout now has a weblog.

Updates on the aftermath of the fire at the Center for Urban Horticultire library.

Librarian finds earliest reference to game of baseball. [ thanks douglas ]

Microsoft dictionary erratic. Suprise! "Paraguay's Alfredo Stroessner is a 'dictator.' Spain's Francisco Franco is an 'authoritarian leader.' Saddam Hussein and Augusto Pinochet are 'national' leaders. Idi Amin is a 'head of state.' And Joseph Stalin is a 'statesman.'" [ thanks leep ]


A Librarian At Every Table, an initiative to encourage and solidify librarians' place in community building, from Kathleen de la Peņa McCook. [ thanks steve ]

"In keeping with our bullet-point culture, I will now dim the lights and attempt to activate my PowerPoint presentation. Hopefully the projector will work. As I have not prepared a lecture, I will talk to the slides, filling in the space between the headings with banal comments and self-evident nonsense. You will however see some attractively coloured graphs." Avoiding the dystopic university model while acknowledging the allure of web-based pedagogy. [ thanks aaron ]

There are no more links today because you should read completely through this entire article.


I did a small update to the links page, in case anyone actually uses it.

Oooh ooh, ACLU gets all grumpy in AK. Exhibit in library goes back up. For those of you who don't read the links and were wondering what the mayor's deal is, the issue with him [allegedly] was that the gay pride exhibit was "interactive" meaning in this case that the elevators were decorated like closets so that when patrons went into or out of them, they would be metaphorically "coming out" etc etc. The local paper weighs in on explaning some of the legal issues involved. My favorite part of this pissing match is the threat of a counter exibit. The insane "if you have a pro-gay exhibit, we get to have an anti-gay exhbit" In my next gadfly position I want to go to public libraries demannding that if they get to put on book displays, I have a legal right to put up anti-book displays. [ thanks mike]

Actually, if I ever do any [more] book activism, it will be this. [ thanks jen ]

Blake and LISNews get some good press in the School Library Journal along with Steve and Rory. Nice going, guys!

"...the most ridiculous thing I've ever seen." [tj] Bizarre press release for a product alleged to be a digital librarian. [ libgeek ]

"Librarians, who rarely get excited, said yesterday that they were very excited to have" amnesty day at the SFPL library. Are you an excitable librarian? Please email Steve Rubenstein and tell him so. [ stuff ]

"I have never known a librarian I didn't like, but Tee-hee made himself extra-special by finding me, each time, a book I didn't ask for, but which he had included over and above the call of duty. He'd lay out my requests one by one, and then say, 'And this one is for you to read.' Wasn't that nice?"

Librarian finds flag that Lincoln may have clutched in the Ford Theater after he was shot. Actually, the flag was found in 1998. Now it is on display.


The card catalog I was interested in was about 5 x 4', heavy as hell and in lovely condition. Most of the drawer rods were missing but that makes it easier to store my socks in. I wasn't going to bid more than $75 -- who wants one of those things -- but in the frenzy of the real live auction, bid it up to $110. It went for $120, not to me. One of the things I found through my research is that the most common use for old card catalogs [at least in the online commmunity] is either former librarians or Deadheads who use them to store and organize tapes. Who knew?

Textbook revision is a hot topic in Japan. "Japanese history textbooks, periodically updated under a system of screening by the Education Ministry, have aroused fierce debate at home and in Asian countries invaded by Japan in the first half of the 20th century." [ thanks bruce ]

Two weblogs that scrutinize our increasing dependence on technlogy Critical Thinking About Technology and NedBog [ thanks laura ]

National Archives closing until 2003. Never fear librarians, the research section will still remain open. [ thanks michael ]

I Want a Coffin with Bookshelves. My friend Sandy tells us why small bookstores are important to him. "#7 It's a bookstore. If you don't understand, go away."

Nominations for the NYPL Young Lions Fiction Award must be in by July 20. According to them, I am still a young lion!

New bookmark from Laughng Librarian, uses the F word, may not be work appropriate. [ juice ]


Today is Ghost in the Machine Day and I am going to an auction to try to buy a card catalog. [ thanks jerry ]


Who is better able to administer the public library? The governor or the legislature? People in Michigan are not so sure. [ thanks kevin ]

I am pleased to death that there are a ton of different library blogs to choose from on a variety of topics. Newest one on my radar. LACK: Librarians are Corrupting Kids. From your friends [and their friends] at Caterblog. [ libgeek ]

Obse on Minneapolis filtering case. "What this determination will do is cause other libraries to think about what obligations they have [to their employees] and to balance that with the First Amendment".

Small town in Louisiana making plans to build their first library. "Catfish Festival revenue or the town will cover the utility costs."

"putting therarin' back in librarian since 1993"

thanks to for