Public Libraries

Dance @ Your Library

for your Monday entertainment... Britain's Cascade Dance Company at the Tunbridge Wells Library in "Big Dance Library Project", recorded in the summer of 2012.

Miscommunication or Mismanagement? (Part 2 of The Urbana Free Library Saga)

In the interviews that [Library Director Deb] Lissak gave Friday afternoon, the words “misunderstanding,” “miscommunication,” and “communication errors” were used repeatedly. Whose misunderstanding? Whose miscommunication? Whose communication errors?

http://smilepolitely.com/culture/miscommunication_or_mismanagement/

Urbana Free Library Aggressive Weeding Draws Criticism

The Urbana (IL) Free Library is facing scrutiny after the director, Deb Lissak made a "made a unilateral decision to weed books in the print collection by date alone," ignoring established criteria and without the knowledge of the Adult Services Director, Anne Phillips. Anecdotal reports indicate that the adult non-fiction collection has been weeded 50-75% and that the titles have been shipped to Better World Books

According to Mary Ellen Farrell, Board of Trustees President, a “conscious effort” was made “to find the most efficient way to get [the library] up to par as far as RFID tagging and … for the most usable [and] efficient things that … our library needs to have here as a core collection, and to identify things that are easily accessed, either from other libraries … or online.”

At least three staff members reported to Phillips that they were instructed to "[weed] as quickly as possible, even at the level of going through a range in 30 minutes of 2,000 titles.” That’s less than one second per book.

The details of this story are at Smile Politely.

Mysterious Head Found at Long Island Library

There’s been a bizarre finding on Long Island’s East End, behind the East Hampton Public Library. A black-painted terra cotta head with a woman’s bust partially showing has been found, and nobody appears to have a clue on who may have placed it there, why it was placed there or who the woman depicted in the statue is.

Texas county to open "library without books"

Bexar County, Texas, is set to launch a huge project they're calling "BiblioTech".

... the BiblioTech library will have 100 e-readers for loan, and an initial selection of 10,000 digital titles. The library itself will have a host of computer stations where patrons can study, use the Internet, and learn computer skills.

Meanwhile, readers at home can check out e-books without leaving the couch. It's estimated that the library's services will reach about 1.7 million people in Bexar County, which includes San Antonio. The BiblioTech project is designed to supplement the existing city library system.

We've heard of "virtual" libraries before, but what I find interesting about this is the emphasis on e-readers for loan, not just computer terminals or digital holdings. However, I have to wonder how 100 e-readers are meant to serve a population of 1.7 million. I assume that's just a starting point, but I'm fascinated to see how this model develops and what it will mean for other public libraries and managing digital readership.

Edited to add - "Anonymous" in the comments below is absolutely right to call me out on using "without books" when I meant "paperless." --Amy

 

At Brooklyn Library’s New Center, Books Are Secondary

The four-month-old Shelby White and Leon Levy Information Commons replaced the branch’s media section, providing a wood-paneled center with space for 70 laptop users, a 36-seat classroom and 7 meeting rooms, including a digital studio with green screen, microphone and video equipment.

It quickly became popular with freelance writers and other creative minds, but its uses have been quite varied, like as a safe space for immigrants to learn about the naturalization process and for parents to hold meetings about charter schools. And yes, even as a warm environment for a wedding.

“This is a sanctuary. It’s beautiful,”

Don’t sell and shrink our libraries. They are the stuff of democracy.

An interesting letter to the editor from Sonia Collins about replacing a public library.

See: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/05/16/opinion/replacing-donnell-library.html?src=rechp

Don’t sell and shrink our libraries. They are the stuff of democracy.

Paul Krugman - In Praise of Public Libraries (Personal and Trivial)

In a blog post, Economics professor and NY Times columnist Paul Krugman rediscovers the Public Library.

"Well, there are coffee shops...But you can only drink so much coffee. And the answer is, libraries!"

Bring the Hulk to the Northlake Public Library

Help the Northlake Public Library get a 9-foot-tall Incredible Hulk statue, graphic novels and a creation station featuring:
•iMac with a drawing pad
•Editing software
•Cintiq interactive pen display
•3D printer
•Artograph Light Tracer Elite

Libraries are constantly changing and evolving beyond just a place to do school work and use the internet. Today’s libraries are celebrating creativity, entertainment and life long learning, and they are doing it with technology and popular materials including graphic novels. The problem is that many people still think of libraries in the old way. We want to smash that stuffy reputation with a 9 foot tall Incredible Hulk Statue.

Do online courses play the role of a public library?

Why online education is mostly a fantasy

"I’m not arguing that online courses have no value. They have tremendous value for those who are self-motivated and prone to seeking out knowledge on their own. But in this regard, online courses play the role of a public library. And just as libraries are utilized by a fairly small percentage of the population and have not solved our educational needs, so too will online courses fail to be the solution to educating the masses.

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