Author Archive: Timothy Inklebarger

3D-printed gun

A Patron Wants to Print a Gun: Now What?

August 9, 2018

The incident and the recent efforts by the Texas-based nonprofit Defense Distributed to publish blueprints for manufacturing 3D-printed guns has libraries across the country working to establish policies to block individuals from printing the weapons. On July 31, US District Court Judge Robert Lasnik issued a temporary restraining order to block Defense Distributed from publishing … Continue reading A Patron Wants to Print a Gun: Now What?



Students play videogames during the grand opening of the Nest, the e-sports facility at University of North Texas in Denton. Photo: Photo: University of North Texas

Wide World of E-Sports

May 1, 2018

The biggest competitions in the world of e-sports—of which the most popular include League of Legends, Super Smash Bros., and Overwatch—fetch top players millions of dollars in prizes, and in 2017 the industry is estimated to have earned $696 million in revenue. Universities across the country have established e-sports teams, and some of the top … Continue reading Wide World of E-Sports


Desirée Fairooz in a 2013 screenshot from a video for Arlington (Va.) Public Library's Columbia Pike branch.

“Laughing Librarian” Gets the Last Laugh

November 15, 2017

Fairooz was arrested on January 10 while attending the hearing. The former children’s librarian laughed out loud when Sen. Richard Shelby (R-Ala.) said he believed that Sessions had an extensive record of “treating all Americans equally under the law.” As a result, she was forcibly removed by Capitol police, and while being dragged from the … Continue reading “Laughing Librarian” Gets the Last Laugh



Hurricane Irma

Rebuilding Communities after Disasters

September 29, 2017

Now librarians around the country are working to assist in recovery efforts and connect patrons—particularly those of Hispanic and Latin heritage—with support groups, aid organizations, and other resources. Loida Garcia-Febo, president-elect of the American Library Association (ALA), who was born and raised in Puerto Rico, said the disaster there is personal: Her family is still … Continue reading Rebuilding Communities after Disasters


Jefferson-Madison Regional Library in Charlottesville, Virginia (Photo: Billy Hathorn/Creative Commons license)

Charlottesville Violence Poses New Challenges for Libraries

August 18, 2017

Libraries at both the public and university level historically have developed response plans for natural disasters, but the Charlottesville demonstrations and similar white nationalist rallies planned for other cities have library administrators working not only to protect patrons and library infrastructure but to assist in relief efforts. Both the University of Florida and Texas A&M … Continue reading Charlottesville Violence Poses New Challenges for Libraries


Desirée Fairooz in a 2013 screenshot from a video for Arlington (Va.) Public Library's Columbia Pike branch.

Retrial for Former Librarian in Sessions Laugh Case

July 19, 2017

Chief Judge Robert Morin of the District of Columbia Superior Court was set to sentence Fairooz, an antiwar activist with the group Code Pink, on Friday, July 14, but instead declared a mistrial. Fairooz, who has worked as a librarian in Arlington, Virginia, and Fort Worth, Texas, confirmed the judge’s ruling in an email response … Continue reading Retrial for Former Librarian in Sessions Laugh Case


Justin Schell (standing, top right), director of Shapiro Design Lab at the University of Michigan’s Shapiro Undergraduate Library, was an organizer of a data rescue event at the library in January.

Archiving Against the Clock

June 1, 2017

The effort began at University of Toronto and Van Pelt Library at the University of Pennsylvania prior to Trump’s inauguration and has since spread to as many as two dozen universities and libraries across the US and Canada. The fear that government research and information—particularly that produced by the Environmental Protection Agency, NASA, and the … Continue reading Archiving Against the Clock


Desirée Fairooz in a 2013 screenshot from a video for Arlington (Va.) Public Library's Columbia Pike branch.

Former Librarian Faces Jail Time for Laugh at Sessions’s Confirmation

May 9, 2017

The reason for her arrest: laughing during the Jan. 10 Senate confirmation hearing of now Attorney General Jeff Sessions. She was found guilty on May 3 of charges of disorderly and disruptive conduct, and obstructing and impeding passage on US Capitol grounds. “I was listening when Sen. (Richard) Shelby [R-Ala.] made the comment that he … Continue reading Former Librarian Faces Jail Time for Laugh at Sessions’s Confirmation



Chicago Women's March materials collected by the Newberry Library. Photo: Newberry Library

Archive Arises out of Protests

January 31, 2017

The simple message was emblazoned on the sign found hanging, abandoned on a fence at Washington Square Park—across the street from Newberry Library in Chicago—in the days following the January 21 Women’s March. Homemade posters, pussyhats, and buttons with slogans like “Women’s rights are human rights”—it’s the stuff that suddenly emerges during public demonstrations and … Continue reading Archive Arises out of Protests