LISNews Features

Children's Poet Laureate

kmccook writes "The NYTimes reports: The Poetry Foundation has named Jack Prelutsky its first children's poet laureate, in the hopes that the appointment will raise awareness of the genre and encourage more poets to write for children. Mr. Prelutsky, 66, is the author of more than 35 books, including "Behold the Bold Umbrellaphant, and Other Poems" (Greenwillow). Collectively his books and anthologies have sold more than a million copies."

Free Museum Day- September 30th!

mdoneil writes "Print out this free pass for museums. Valid Saturday September 30th. The Smithsonian is encouraging other museums to let you in for free that day. Great for penny pinching librarian types!"

The Tale of the Bullying Kid and the Librarian

We'll never know how it all began, but here's the conclusion of a story that started this summer in Socorro NM; about a trouble-making twelve-year old girl, her parents, and the librarian, Lucy Pino, who booted her out of the library. The child's father, Simon Armijo attempted to sue in Magistrate Court, but charges were thrown out by the D.A. Here's the original report on the incident and legal pursuit of the case , here's an editorial about the matter and how in the writers opinion, the community has been taught a lesson.

School of the Future: Libraries Not Needed

Infomancy writes "Though LISNews covered the opening of the Microsoft/Philadelphia School of the Future, a critical part of the story was missed. The School of the Future, you see, lacks a library. In fact, Microsoft's vision statement for the School of the Future takes quite a few cheap shots at libraries.

The Internet has expanded access to information, removing both teacher and student dependencies on a limited amount of information sources. Education is no longer bound by the limits of the teacher, textbook, or the books in the school library...Moreover, the Internet offers students in low-income and remote locations far more information than any single traditional library.[Microsoft]

Apparently Microsoft doesn't realize that libraries can use the Internet as well or that the "single traditional library" in a low-income or remote location may be the only possible way for residents to connect to the Internet (or connect with broadband speeds).

Coming after the recent use of libraries as a metaphor to describe the "disaster" of education by Dr. Roger Schank, this again showcases the need for librarians to move into mainstream media and redefine the perception of libraries."

Human-powered Search

Anonymous Patron writes
A new website has been announced on the pages of the San Francisco Chronicle,, which will use guides in addition to automated search functions. The article states that "users will connect to a live guide via instant messenger from the ChaCha home page. After a connection is made the user can ask all kinds of questions of their guides until they get the information they need. The guides, who are organized by their areas of knowledge, will pass on information and Web site addresses that will appear on the user's screen. When the guides are not answering questions, they will be doing test searches on popular terms, helping with the second part of ChaCha's results that are organized by the guides."

Our reporter adds that the article comments, "Librarians aren't educated and trained, they're "selected"!

No Third Space? Why Teens Love Starbucks

An Anonymous Patron writes "In an article titled 'The Frappuccino Generation' the authors note:

Starbucks also provides a place for teens to be together that's not school, home, work or the library. Professor Bryant Simon, a historian who is the director of the American studies program at Temple University, has talked to dozens of teens and tweens for a book he's writing about Starbucks. He believes that kids discovered the chain because there are so few public spaces to go in America. nt.html"

7 ways to search the web

Molly K writes "Man-hunter, Shopper or Basketcase, where do you fit? A recent feature in Slate offers a tongue-in-cheek analysis on user's search behavior using AOL's ill-fated data leak. Also includes info on how to sift through the AOL data yourself, if you're so inclined."

A search by any other name (might get you sued).

Molly K writes "In response to it's inclusion in the new edition of Websters & a nod from the OED, Google has sent out legal letters to various media organizations, warning them against using its name as a verb, reports The Independent. Google is becoming concerned about trademark violation. There's also a nice discussion on trademark vs. copyright on Slashdot's thread about this topic."

Ms. Arnold is dropping AOL

mdoneil writes "Ms. Arnold, one of the people identified from the AOL search query fiasco is dropping AOL.
Ms Arnold consented to be interviewed by a reporter about her Internet searches, more consideration than AOL gave her, and her story is printed here.
It seems her pets have the same problem as my cat, but with Baxter I think it is attitude."

In Miami a Clear Case of Political Censorship

kathleen de la pena mccook writes "CBS4/MIAMI HERALD) MIAMI No decision was made Friday following a court hearing on an effort by the Miami-Dade County school board to ban a controversial book on Cuba from school libraries. Evan Bacon reports with an excellent overview of the hearing on CBS. See the video. The Miami Herald reports: Judge hears case on banning Cuba book The ACLU argued in a federal court that banning a controversial book on Cuba is a clear case of political censorship. As attorneys for the American Civil Liberties Union argued in federal court Friday [July 21,2006) that the banning of the controversial children's book Vamos a Cuba was a classic case of political censorship, the ban's defenders said it painted life in Cuba as if it were Coral Gables rather than a communist dictatorship.''It was only when the politicians got involved that the books were removed,'' said JoNel Newman, a University of Miami attorney leading the ACLU's case, before U.S. District Judge Alan S. Gold.During an evidentiary hearing, her side tried to establish that two review committees and the superintendent had carefully weighed the issues of age appropriateness and accuracy before deciding to keep the books on the shelves of Miami-Dade public school libraries, but the School Board overrode its own procedural rules to ban them.... During Friday's hearing, a small group of librarians sometimes scoffed at the board's lawyers, at one point provoking a shushing from a security officer. In library science circles, they said, the solution to omitted information is to add more books to a collection, not to remove them. ''Not every book can be everything to everyone,'' said Pat Scales, a library science expert and member of the American Library Association, which entered the case in favor of the ACLU. Her testimony: ``Adults are trying to bring their own political views to the minds of children.'' More here"

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