Jon Stewart: SOPA Will Drive Us To Libraries "Like A Common Masturbator"

Jon Stewart: SOPA Will Drive Us To Libraries "Like A Common Masturbator"
The Daily Show featured not one but two segments on SOPA last night, and with Wikipedia "dark," Jon Stewart had a dickens of a time figuring out just what the hell SOPA means. (What was he supposed to do to learn things, "go to the library like a common masturbator?") And so Stew-Beef reluctantly turned to the "notoriously unreliable news" for answers, discovering, to his horror, that this law could send violators to jail for up to five years for merely streaming copyrighted material.

Reference questions while Wikipedia down?

Any reference librarians get questions that resulted from Wikipedia being down? If so what type of questions did you get? Where you able to answer the questions with your collection?

I have heard from one librarian that they received calls from home school kids that were working on projects and needed a different resource because Wikipedia was down.

FOSS4LIB registry now open for new packages/releases/providers/events/institutions

Peter Murray writes: "The project that I was seeking feedback on over the fall is seeing the light of day. is now open for use by the community. For the Code4Lib audience, this mostly means you can create an account, log in, and create content nodes for specific packages, releases, and events. See for links on how to get started.

For people or organizations that provide support for open source software in libraries -- implementation consulting, hosting, custom code development, training, etc. -- we especially want to encourage you to sign up and post your availability on the site. One of the overarching goals is to promote an ecosystem of open source support providers for packages that are specific to libraries. So we want to make this registry a better place to go to find those support options over a scattershot Google search. Please note that there is one bit of functionality in the registry that is not done right now. Some software packages have well developed lists of providers and institutions that use the software, and we're not trying to reproduce those in the registry. There is a capability coming that will allow URLs to these community lists to override the provider/using-institution functionality of the registry. More on that soon.

Speaking of additional functionality, I am very interested in hearing ideas about how the registry can advance the goal of supporting open source software in libraries. If you have any, feel free to discuss them here or send me a direct e-mail. A press release about FOSS4LIB will be going out in the next couple of hours, and it will include information about one-hour introductory sessions at Midwinter and webinars later in January and February.
Here's the instructions: -- Read More

Is The Web Really Just Links Or Is It Evolving?

Is The Web Really Just Links Or Is It Evolving?
A web of links can be limiting when looking at applications. When looking at reading a news story, links make sense, but reading articles is only part of the web. By looking at the data available, we are starting to create a more interactive and informative web. Sarah Perez at TechCrunch thinks this could be moving towards a web of apps, but that post is more focused on mobile apps. As I said previously, mobile apps tend to be limiting in their own ways.

Amidst SOPA, PIPA Blackouts, Issa Introduces Rival OPEN Act

Amidst SOPA, PIPA Blackouts, Issa Introduces Rival OPEN Act
midst today's Web blackouts, Rep. Darrell Issa formally introduced his SOPA/PIPA alternative, dubbed the OPEN Act.
The bill would call on the International Trade Commission (ITC) to handle overseas "rogue" Web sites rather than the Justice Department.
The bill, H.R. 3782, would allow the ITC to cut off funding from sites found to be trafficking in counterfeit goods, from purses and prescription drugs to DVDs and MP3s.

Wikipedia down on Wednesday to protest SOPA

Wikipedia may black out its website Wednesday to protest anti-piracy legislation under consideration in Congress.

Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales announced on Twitter Monday that the popular community-based online encyclopedia will shut down its English versions for 24 hours in protest. Users of the site have discussed for more than a month whether it should react to the legislation and in the past few days, tried to decide how.

The foundation behind the site, Wikimedia, says it is still collecting input from users and expects to make its final decision later Monday evening on the details of the protest based on that feedback. However, a large-scale blackout is expected at this time.

Article in the Washington Post

Great Librarian SOPA and Protect-IP Links

SOPA and Protect-IP Links

The harm that does to ordinary, non-infringing users is best described via a hypothetical user: Abe. Abe has never even so much as breathed on a company’s copyright but he does many of the things typical of Internet users today. He stores the photos of his children, now three and six years old, online at PickUpShelf* so that he doesn’t have to worry about maintaining backups. He is a teacher and keeps copies of his classes accessible for his students via another service called SunStream that makes streaming audio and video easy. He engages frequently in conversation in several online communities and has developed a hard-won reputation and following on a discussion host called SpeakFree. And, of course, he has a blog called “Abe’s Truths” that is hosted on a site called NewLeaflet. He has never infringed on any copyright and each of the entities charged with enforcing SOPA know that he hasn’t.

The End Of Freedom: mobile and control

mobile and control
A future where most people have a mobile device as their main or only web browsing computer seems quite plausible. If the iOS ‘closed-shop’ platform model becomes prevalent (as also seems quite plausible, as it’s been quite succesful — and I wouldn’t be shocked to see larger form factor non-mobile OSs adopt this model too, perhaps the Apple desktop app store is an exploratory shot) — This could be the end of the era where computer owners have the freedom to install whatever they want on their computers, and the beginning of an era where computer owners can only install what the platform vendors say they can install. And their permission to install will be subject to their own business models and interests, and the business models and interests of their business partners. This is not a welcome course.

SOPA shelved until consensus is found

Controversial online piracy bill shelved until 'consensus' is found
House Oversight Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) said early Saturday morning that Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) promised him the House will not vote on the controversial Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) unless there is consensus on the bill.

"While I remain concerned about Senate action on the Protect IP Act, I am confident that flawed legislation will not be taken up by this House," Issa said in a statement. "Majority Leader Cantor has assured me that we will continue to work to address outstanding concerns and work to build consensus prior to any anti-piracy legislation coming before the House for a vote."

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