Blogs

How are "SCORE"(s) assigned to Submissions -

http://search-engines-web.com/ writes "How are "SCORE"(s) assigned to Submissions - What exactly gets "Calculated"..
Does Higher mean better...
Does it have any effect on whether a submission is "Accepted" or "Rejected"...
Instead of the term "Rejected"
Could we consider "Declined" as an option :)"

Actually I've been meaning to change "Rejected" for quite some time, I just forget. So, yes, good idea, and I changed that to "Sorry".
Now, as to the why...

The FAQ which I need to update, does a good job of explaining it. There's no score on the submissions, we read them, and if it looks good it gets posted. Sometimes it's obviously bad, and it gets deleted right away. Usually the ones we're not quite sure about sit in the queue for a while until a few of us have had a look. If no one posts it after maybe a week or so I usually delete it.
Unfortunatly, it's an either-or thing, either it getes posted, or it gets deleted.
Shlashdot is famous for not posting people's submissions. I think we use most of what we get, but not always.
I get yelled at for not posting stuff, and I get yelled at for posting stuff.

Another blow to the free flow of information -DOD IG Reports

Two articles highlighting the increasing secrecy of the US Gov't and of the Defense Department in particular.

Secrecy News reports that the Dept of Defense Inspector General's new policy is
"Not only will classified information be banned from the web, as always, but so will all other information that has not been "specifically approved for public release," as well as "information that is of questionable value to the general public."

Secrecy News points out that although few of us wish to curl up at night with a DoD IG report, journalists and public accountability groups find them extremely helpful in identifying fraud, waste and abuse in our military that might otherwise be tolerated by an overworked Congress whose members live in terror of being "weak on national defense" by questioning DoD expenditures.

The Washington Post article cover other cases where information that could not possibly be of interest to terrorists (like the Energy Task Force members and minutes), but is of vital domestic interest is being removed or kept hidden from public view.

Sometimes lost in all of the ink about secrecy and erosion of civil liberties under President Bush is that nearly all Presidents since Wilson, and including President Clinton, have helped to expand what many people call the "National Security State."

Loss of information should not be a left/right issue -- it's a matter of basic democracy.

Quotes from Thomas Merton's New Seeds of Contemplation

In addition to my Library day job, I also helped set up and now volunteer alternate Sundays at my church library.

As a result, I've been reading a lot of Thomas Merton, whom you can read more about at http://www.merton.org/. My current Merton book is New Seeds of Contemplation, which you will be hearing from often in the next few weeks.

This morning I came across this quote about peace:

"If men really wanted peace they would sincerely ask God for it and He would give it to them. But why should He give the world a peace which it does not really want? The peace the world pretends to desire is really no peace at all.

To some men peace merely means the liberty to exploit other people without fear of retaliation or interference. To others peace means the freedom to rob others without interruption. To still others it means the leisure to devour the goods of the earth without being compelled to interrupt their pleasures to feed those whom their greed is starving. And to practically everybody else peace simply means the abscence of any physical violence that might cast a shadow over lives devoted to the satisifaction of their animal appetites for comfort and pleasure."

Hello World & tentative blog scheme

Having been reminded by one of Blake's automated e-mails that I have journal space here at LISNews.com, I will try to take advantage of it.

In case other people choose to read my musings, here is my current plan for updating this blog:

Frequency - Once a week, usually on weekends. I reserve the right to post more often, but know my own weaknesses well enough to realize that once a week is probably the freshest I can manage.

Topic - Ecletic! Most likely geared towards my personal readings (quotes I want to share, ocaisional reviews), postings about government documents and freedom of information, other items I think are even vaugly library related. The occaisional observations on the Imperial civil religion passing as Christianity in this country (I'll try to keep these to a minimum, but sometimes I can't help myself.)

Comment Response Policy - Since I can't picture many people reading this, maybe it's arrogant to HAVE a comments response policy. It's better to be safe than sorry:

1) I won't respond to comments with profanity whether or not I agree with your point of view. There is enough profanity on both sides of the political spectrum.

2) I don't feel compelled to respond on attacks on my patriotism.

3) If I'm not being clear in an item, never be afraid to let me know.

That's it for my intro! - Daniel

From Free to Fee in 10 Easy Steps

Just take a look at ABQ's homepage and you know what business they're in, advertising, plain and simple. The stories take a back seat.

Reading the story on how the moved from free to pay just reinforces that. Citing increased costs, and lowered paid subscriptions to the print paper Donn Friedman argues there is nothing wrong with building a wall around your website, after all, they made a quick $100k. Page views are up 30 percent; advertising revenue is up more than 50 percent. And print subscriptions are not falling.

"Like anything else you consume, you should pay for your local newspaper, whether you get it on your doorstep or online."

So why can they charge people? They "… happen to be the sole provider of local news in a remote place, like Spokane or Albuquerque... In remote places, charging for news online can work, the logic goes, because readers don't have another place they can easily go to get the content and service you provide."
In other words, we've got you, you owe us, and you're going to pay. What're you going to do, there's no where else to go!

The arrogance runs deep in this piece, but what really strikes me is this paragraph:

"Reporters may be your hardest sell. What reporter would be in favor of reducing his potential audience? Reporters often choose journalism because they want to report the truth and share it with the largest number of people that they can. Journalism is a higher calling to them, not a business."

I've always felt journalism is a higher calling; it's not just a business. Journalism a corner stone of democracy, and it needs to be as open, accessible and honest as possible. There is nothing wrong with making money with whatever you do, but I just don't feel good about the politics of greed and power that control what gets reported, and in this case, who reads it. Especially in this case because they " happen to be the sole provider of local news in a remote place." In my mind this is an argument to leaving access open, to finding another way to get the site to pay for itself.

So, lets play what if… What if some, most, or worse case scenario, all local papers start charging for access? What happens to weblogs, alternative local papers, the newswire services and other news outlets? Do weblogs dry up and die from lack of places to link to? Do we start to become sources of news? Do we simply rely on any free sources we can get our grubby little links on? There is nothing wrong with having a profit motive behind what you do, but I really believe it should take a back seat in many cases, and it never does.

"What I do has value, he said, and people ought to be willing to pay for it."

…And if they're not willing to, we'll force them to pay.

*waves*

I'm not a librarian, I just work for a library. I'm considering going for an MLS after I finish my undergrad, but things may change.

In memory of Wallace Kuralt, a David among Goliaths

Read yesterday of the death of Wallace Kuralt at age 64, former owner of Chapel Hill NC's Intimate Bookshop and brother of journalist Charles Kuralt.
He ran the store for over thirty years, but had to close it down in the late '90s due to the growth of the mega-chains, Barnes & Noble and Borders. He was a hero among indies (independent booksellers) for launching a suit against the chains; regrettably the judge ruled against him, but an appeal is planned(see website:
lawmall.com/rpa/rpa_whk1.html
Here's his obituary:
wilmingtonstar.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20031216/APN/312160705&cachetime=5

downsizing?

Well. The memo came out several days ago that there were going to be cuts at the seminary where I work (standalone seminary in the south). It's depressing naturally. But its feeling more than depressing too. No one knows who will go/stay.


It means that I have to screw up the courage (again) to look at job ads. I thought this would be the last place I'd work until retirement in twenty something years. Now I feel torn; have to do what is right for the family and all.

AHHHH there's the rub. We've just now settled into the area. We've looked at some houses to buy even so we can stop the vagabond renter's life we've lived. Our kids are safely and happily in schools they seem to thrive in.

Our director has said that he thinks the library might have "a position or two" cut. Rumors among staff are that it means the part-timers and new cataloger would be first. But I'm the next-newest employee after that. Gulp.


I don't think my family can mentally take another relocation. So that means we stay here. Then the question is "where to work?"

There has NEVER been an implicit deal

Just caught this little tidbit at The IMDB:

Viacom President and COO Mel Karmazin says he does not expect personal video recorders (PVRs) like the TiVo to affect television advertising within the next three to five years, but if it does, viewers will have to begin paying for their programs. Speaking at New York conference, Karmazin said that there has always been an implicit deal between the broadcaster and the viewer that the price for watching shows is having to watch commercials as well. If, however, substantial numbers of viewers use their TiVo players to skip commercials, "then we're going to have to charge you," Karmazin said. Karmazin predicted that ad sales in all areas of the company would rise during the coming year. Viacom's broadcast properties include CBS, MTV, Nickelodeon, and Showtime.

I'd say that so called "implicit deal" went out the window when we got remote controls. TiVO didn't kill ads for me, the remote did, does anyone just sit and watch ads?
I've seen this implicit deal talked about by some other exec. once before, where do they get such ideas? I made no deal, implicit, or explicit to watch an ad under any circumstances.
Thinking like this boogles my mind, and it's why I hate TV so much.

Mark Fiore cartoons

Wonderful site of liberal-oriented animated cartoons -- this guy is talented and infinitely on target regarding our Federal government and politics California style (his home state). There's a new cartoon every week--check it out:
markfiore.com

Working on a blog

Well, I've finally caught up, but now I moved onto a new project. I wanted a blog for work and personal, so I figured 'Why go the easy route?'. Instead, I spent part of the weekend installing and configuring drupal (www.drupal.org). It's nice, configurable, and I've got the necessary requirements. Its still a work in progress, so its not online yet.

Mozilla Bugs Me

2 Things on Mozilla I want to remind myself to submit as RFEs:
1. I can't search within a tech box using ctrl-f
2. Long text doesn't wrap within a text box

These 2 things make Mozilla painful to use for me. They seem like such minor things, but I do it all the time, and it's quite an annoyance.

I've found my catchphrase!

Thanks to Bill and Gene, it will forever be, "Boys who are into sports tend not to become librarians."

Too busy...

Following the flu during ALL of Thanksgiving week (took care of my sick girls during the first 3 days), I'm finally catching up with my workload so I can get back to reading all my favorite blogs and sites. Missed LISNews, but I did try to scan the headlines everyday. Finished a column, working on another and two additional projects. Trying to prepare for an interview and schedule a vacation. Gotta love the holidays.

Image links?

Look it works! hehehehe

And linking to a web page???

Merry christmas and Happy New Year!

Deleting bib Records

Law periodical bib records will be delted or shadowed if they can't be deleted.

will anyone ever read this? Will I ever read it after I start it??? LOL

I'm using it for records of stuff we're doing in cataloging.

Wal-Mart is the pits

As we look forward to next year, hopefully with a new president and an improving economy, I think we should all bear in mind some of the factors that helped to diminish our present economy, big box stores included.

An excellent series of articles from the L.A. Times -- please read what you can, and pass the word: don't patronize Wal-Mart.

latimes.com/business/la-walmart-sg.gallery

Even if you don't have time to read any of the articles, check out the flash US map (right hand side) "Unrivaled Expansion."
For those that hate with a red-hot hate, check out:
walmartsucks.com

First entry

So. I keep thinking I should write something here, but I can't really think of anything. I'm not very good at keeping journals and I already have a blog, so I think I'll just keep blogging over there. If I ever come up with something to write in this journal, I will, but I don't want to force it. Trust me: it would not be pretty.

In the meantime, if you're interested, you could read my blog, BentleyBlog, if you like.

"Do you read fiction?"

That's what a coworker asked me yesterday in the lunchroom. Apparently the correct answer is, "Not at work." Now that I think about it, I almost never read fiction, except on vacation. I read lots, but it's mostly professional or news; when time gets tight, it's the fiction that gets pushed aside.

I need to do something about that.

BPL board chair Bill Taylor. Censored reorganization plan.

Boston Public Library board of trustees chair Bill Taylor, mayor Tom Menino and BPL President Bernie Margolis have censored the reorganization plan documents of our Boston Public Library Departments.

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