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where I'll be
04mar... iSchool
28apr... ASIS, Cambridge
20jun... ALA
14aug... PNLA, Boise

A public library is the most enduring of memorials, the trustiest monument for the preservation of an event or a name or an affection; for it, and it only, is respected by wars and revolutions, and survives them.
- Mark Twain

search me:
NY & LA Times login
user: corporatemedia
pass: stillsucks

Hi. I had an interesting informational chat with some OCLC folks who are working with the Gates Foundation and others to create a library portal for librarians who have tech issues or need support. Interesting idea, launches in six weeks. Might have gotten a job, but I'm heading to VT as always. By the way, I am seriously running for ALA council. Consider voting for me.
Librarians, including myself, say "Stop the War Now"
Number theory and the ISBN
University of Arizona students have been occupying their library for a 24/7 sit-in protesting the war. It's going okay, except for the lack of sleep
Twice, librarians warned the activists not to sleep, then called police about 4 a.m.... "It was a gross injustice to our First Amendment rights," [Laura Showalter] said. "We were asleep because it was all hours of the morning." UA spokeswoman Sharon Kha said students can protest on campus but must follow rules. [ thanks lori ]

Children's book illustration seems to be the topic that is attracting funders and the media in the library world nowadays. Here is an ongoing display by the British Library: Magic Pencil, Children's Illustration Today. This is all based on a collection curated by Quentin Blake of The Librarian and the Robbers fame. [ thanks eoin ]
A bit of discussion by [mostly] non-librarians about the Minnesota case. There's also been some chitchat about my PATRIOT Act article. [ thanks daniel ]
Hi. Updating from my bedroom is actually easier than it sounds
PATRIOT Watch: I asked, they answered, the We Hate the PATRIOT Act livejournal. They welcome submissions.
PATRIOT Watch: Supreme Court will not hear the ACLUs PATRIOT Act challenge
The ACLU used an unusual maneuver to get the case to the Supreme Court, filing an appeal on behalf of people who don't even know they're being monitored. The justices would have had to give special permission to allow it. They refused, without comment. [ catalogablog ]

Superstar librarian Bruce Jensen is collecting children's book titles that are pro-peace or anti-war for his Weapons of Mass Instruction bibliography. [ thanks katia ]
Librarians are putting together lists of resources for learning more about the war. The Leddy Library has done a great job rounding up alternative news sources as well as the usual claptrap. [ thanks mita ]

Abigail is the only other librarian I know who has worked for Google Answers. Like me, she has moved on to other things. For example, this article: Of Interns And Others: Job Hunting Pointers For New Librarians.
It's a little tough for me to read the phrase "death of the book" alongside words like opportunity. Here's what some scholars from an Australian conference have to say about the subject. [ scott ]
There's an article about Google Answers that I was interviewed for in the Australian Age.
"...too many low ratings and the researcher can lose their job. So they politely struggle to answer questions that are incomplete, poorly phrased and vague, and are positively joyful when they get a customer who explains what they are actually looking for."
Twelve librarians sue the Minneapolis library system over Internet porn. Please note that this is the end result of a dispute that has been going on since 2000. Meanwhile, Minnesota is in the middle of a funding crisis. [ thanks bill ]
PATRIOT Watch: FBI employees play down importance of the Act in fighting terrorism.
"If we had not had the Patriot Act, it would have been fine with the FBI," said Marsh, a special agent based in the FBI's Palo Alto office. "In the FBI, it's a nonissue."
Hi. My roomate is ripping apart the living room so I am mostly typing with the laptop in my lap in my bed this week. Updates possibly more sporadic than usual.
There is a new "community" section on the links page, featuring BookFilter.
My article on the PATRIOT Act that was published in Slinghot is now online.
ASIS Conference: It's Not Just Google Anymore: Blogs and the Latest in Search Engines featuring me AND Jenny AND Steven AND Greg [and Ran, who I do not know]. Clearly I am out of my league.
Freedom to Read Protection Act. About time. [ thanks sarah ]
Hard to believe America's first public library was [only] built in 1895. <
The Public Lending Right in the UK is what allows for payments to authors when their books are lent out by public libraries. The creator of the Public Lending Right, John Sumsion, died this week at the age of 74. [ thanks eoin ]
Fun fun smug big box bookstore humor. [ thanks all ]
Hi. I've added a note to my Technically Legal Signs page that basically says feel free to copy and use them as long as you give me some credit.
PATRIOT Watch: Activist tip, check out all the "subversive" books from your library. Be sure to return them on time. [ thanks sarah ]
More library activism: Atlanta-Fulton Public Library watch website.
As of mid-March, the library owned only 10 of the current 31 bestsellers on the New York Times Bestsellers List.... A patron at the end of the waiting list for the #1 title on the NYT Bestseller List would have to wait 7 1/2 years before he/she could read it [ thanks katia ]
You guys all know Overdue, the funnier-than-we-thought-it-could-be comic [with blog] about things librarian? They are involved in a bit of copyright imbroglio and are changing their name. In fact, they're having a name changing contest. Details here.
Quick quiz. What is the diference between the newfangled word "Idea Store" and the oldfangled word "Library"? One implies commerce, one implies free. Which one is being touted as up-and-coming, do you think? [ thanks all ]
Okay, but is Idea Store better or worse than Datapalooza?
the name -- Datapalooza? "It came out of a general resource meeting," Jackson said. "There were suggestions to call it a reference fair, a resource fair and then everybody started getting silly." [ thanks penny ]
Minneapolis branch libraries will not be closing, at least not permanently. [ thanks chris ]
Hi. I will be on TechTV Wednesday talking about Google Answers, very briefly. Transcript and more info here.
I don't think I mention enough how good the writing on MobyLives is. Here is a column by Chris Rodell with a view on porn in libraries. I don't necessarily agree with all of it, but it's nice to see people approaching the issue without getting all wiggy about it. [ thanks dave ]
ALA is going to launch a new website, this year, they swear. For now, you can see it in an online powerpoint presentation, which has to be one of the most ridiculous ways of getting information across that I currently know of.[ bibliolatry ]
Rory has a single-issue edition of Library Juice out early this week with an article by Toni Samek: Intellectual Freedom within the Profession.
Pittsburgh library spending 40 mil on "ambitious" system-wide renovations and also dealing with a 50% cut in funding from the state budget. [ thanks rachel ]
People are gearing up again for the Edible Books festivals, April first. Is there one in your neighborhood? [ thanks eoin ]
Florida considers a law that will allow parents to learn the titles of their childrens' overdue books.
Hi. You know, someone really should start a PATRIOT Act weblog, there's a lot of great stuff going on nationally to protest it and perhaps even overturn it. If anyone is still having trouble with any of my feeds, please let me know.
PATRIOT Watch: New Mexico is considering a bill directing public libraries to post notices to patrons about the Act, among other things[ thanks jim & jack ]
PATRIOT Watch: the Center for Congnitive Liberty and Ethics has created a Reader's Rights Project [ thanks jewel ]
State Library Deathwatch: there is nothing wrong with what the Hawai'ian state librarian did, lay off already. [ thanks brandon ]
Why are books about America's Right Wing fascism disappearing from book stores, or are they? [ thanks beth ]
If the legislature doesn't kill your library, perhaps teenage boys will do it instead. [ thanks lis ]
The Canadian Freedom to Read committee has a list of winners and losers in the struggle against censorship.[ thanks eoin ]
How do you choose which branch libraries to close? Minneapolis has to make some tough choices.
For now, the library staff is recommending closing the Roosevelt, Southeast, Webber Park and the Walker libraries to save $227,000 this year. The option also would require cutting nearly 49 full-time staff positions. "This is sort of the first step into a diminished library environment. There's no other way to describe it," said Board President Laura Waterman Wittstock. She said she intends to support the closings.[ thanks lora & chris ]
Hi. I am starting to work on my Library Crawl list for 2003. Only been to one library per month so far, that has to change.
Please note the left-hand column of the website for the Santa Cruz Public Library. I've always thought that warning signs in libraries might be a good idea.
While we understand that no one wants to cut services at Public Library, isn't another way to put this "no one wants to cut services to people who complain a lot, or vote, so let's end services to shut-ins and the elderly"? Shame on you, Boston Public. [ thanks sarah ]
An IMDB for books? Discussion ensues. [ thanks lis ]
Let's dont forget that the current State Librarian of Hawai'i was hired on the heels of Bart Kane -- you know, that "outsourcing guy." She started with a book budget of zero. Zero dollars for buying books. Here's some history on her tenure and a call for the legislature to lay off hassling her.
"We believe that Lowell is being scapegoated by half-witted, show-boating legislators who do the dirty deed of not adequately or appropriately funding the state library system then blaming the state librarian." [ thanks brandon ]
Salt Lake City Public Library has a thriving zine collection. [ thanks chris ]
If you'd like to put some faces with all the names you read in the CIPA coverage, here's a list of links to some images and backstory. [ thanks josh ]
New library in Alexandria has big dreams and presently a very small collection. This article is interesting in that it reads like many typical NYT press-release-as-software "news" articles, and is almost entirely speculative. They have some funding and some support and almost no books and yet they get headlines like these. Huh. [ thanks taylor ]
Hi. Since it may be a long weekend without, here are two very intersting things to occupy your time.
Wunderkinds Steven and Blake have create a portal for library news from blogs with RSS feeds. Use it here. Give feedback here. Nice work guys!
And while your feedback fingers are still twitching, please write to this misguided gentleman and let him know that librarians are doing more to defend his freedoms than nearly anyone else including, it appears, himself and his thieving friends.
Hi. I'll be in San Francisco for a few days, updates possibly sporadic. The speech I gave at the iSchool is now online and linked here.
Santa Cruz public library becomes the first library in the nation to put up signs warning patrons about the implications of the PATRIOT Act. If you look at some of the other things Santa Cruz PL has been up to, this should come as no surprise. [ thanks lisa ]
Flashing in the library. [not safe for work]
Hawai'i state librarian under fire from state Senators who cut her budget yet bristle at her cutting library hours. [ thanks brandon ]
State Library Deathwatch: Florida SL will not go quietly, pix from the protest [ thanks katia ]
St Louis PL quietly reversed a policy allowing the handing over over computer sign-up sheets to law enforcement. Now they require a court order. Apparently they have no trouble telling people the FBI has been to their library. [ thanks katia ]
West Chicago puts old library building up for sale as a fixer single-family home. No kitchen, plenty of bookshelves. [ thanks dsdlc ]
I got a racy librarian limerick written for me over at
Hi. I couldn't really have planned it better if I'd actually been thinking but the image from yesterday made a great overhead for the talk I gave at the iSchool today. The talk will be online in some streaming format before long and will be just like the real thing except without all the teriyaki I spilled on my shirt 20 minutes before it started. Other than that minor gaffe, it went really well, I even tried not to swear so much.
Hawaii grudge match: state librarian versus the governor.
Gov. Linda Lingle yesterday criticized state Librarian Virginia Lowell for failing to come up with ways to keep libraries open longer than 40 hours a week in the face of statewide budget cuts. "I was so surprised by the library's reaction because it was so unprofessional," Lingle said. [ thanks brandon ]
Meanwhile, librarians in 17 boroughs of London are on strike for higher pay. Strike called "an unacceptable disruption of children’s education" by the government. Do you see a trend here? [ thanks bill ]
Supreme Court starts hearing the CIPA appeal tomorrow. [ thanks tom ]
The Feminist task Force of SRRT has come out with their recommended feminst books for youth list for 2003. Sure would be great if it were also in HTML.... [ thanks daniel & susan ]
One librarian's view of the NYC Peace rally.
More BS about the alleged need for new librarians while people build their Big Beautiful Libraries. [ thanks jonathan ]
Transit librarian listens to a lot of the same music I do. [ thanks chris ]
Hi. A word or two about this image. There is an Uncle Sam billboard on I-5, south of Olympia, on the way to Portland Oregon from here. It seems to be owned by this farmer, who regularly puts up crotchety right-wing or Libertarian slogans. Pretty crabby stuff but often good for a laugh. This is what the billboard says presently. The other side says something about comparing our local Senator to Osama bin Laden. Brrrr. This showed up on the Librarian Avengers rant wall a ways back but I just now got a photograph. My reading of this sign? "Meet deviants like Uncle Sam @ your library!" [ thanks chris & ken & darren ]
[the public library, a great place for your kids to meet sexual deviants]
Hi. Okay, has some new functionality, an RSS feed with title tags! I have two feeds now, linked on the left, pick the one that works the best. Thanks so much to Steven from Library Stuff for helping me get this working.
Just to show how pervasive the anti-PATRIOT Act fervor has gotten, ALAOIF has compiled a helpful list of each and every state library association and what resolutions [if any] they have sponsored against the Act.
Enoch Pratt Free Library the subject of two upcoming bills and one lawsuit. [ thanks rebekah ]
State Library Deathwatch: Washington could become the only state without a state library.
Meanwhile DC is contemplating a Big Beautiful Library when by all accounts their library system is in a shambles.

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