The Scoop

  • FBI Whistleblower Answers Questions

    Despite a warning from his superiors, FBI Special Agent Bassem Youssef answered questions at a January 12 session of the ALA Midwinter Meeting. In 2002, Youssef blew the whistle to the director of the FBI and Congress that discriminatory practices within the Bureau were undermining the effectiveness of America's counterterrorism efforts. In this video, Youssef and his attorney discuss the case, talk about the abuse of National Security Letters following the passage of the Patriot Act, and speak of Abu Ghraib as an example of the U.S. failure to understand Middle Eastern culture.

    January 22, 2008
  • Author Forum – Midwinter 2008

    Best-selling historical novelists Mary Doria Russell (Dreamers of the Day) and Geraldine Brooks (People of the Book) talk about "book pusher" librarians, book lust, and where they stand on e-book readers like the new Amazon Kindle at the January 11 Exhibits Round Table Author Forum at the ALA Midwinter Meeting in Philadelphia. More ALA videos available at

    January 15, 2008
  • Booklist Editors Read for Fun 2007

    The 2007 Editors' Choice issue of Booklist also includes "Reading for Fun," a roundup of each editor's favorite personal reading choice of the year. In this video, seven of the editors get personal about unwieldy titles, Russian poetry, way-too-heavy hardbacks, and more. Check out more ALA videos at

    January 8, 2008
  • Welcome to Anaheim – ALA Annual Conference 2008 Preview

    Thinking about attending ALA Annual Conference in Anaheim, California? After this rollercoaster ride of a preview (literally), you won't be able to resist. Several Orange County librarians tell us about the obvious draws (Disneyland, shopping, the beaches) and some attractions you might not know about - including a beautiful library or two. Also covered: your airport options, public transportation and hotel availability, and some adventurous daytrips. We'll see you in Anaheim June 26-July 2, 2008! More ALA videos available at

    November 29, 2007
  • A Conversation with Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

    Basketball legend and author Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is the keynote speaker at the ALA Midwinter Meeting in Philadelphia, January 11-16, and he sits down for a conversation about growing up with libraries, his committment to literacy and learning, and how books help young readers understand both past and present turmoil. More ALA videos at

    November 27, 2007
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  • AASL National Conference 2007

    In this snapshot from the 13th American Association of School Librarians National Conference in Reno, Nevada, keynote speaker Dan Pink talks about his subversive high school librarian, keynote speaker Omar Wasow discusses how school libraries can compete in the age of Google, AASL President Sara Kelly Johns talks about the new AASL standards, and we are introduced to a project called "Sheet Happens." More ALA videos available at

    November 14, 2007
  • After the Fire

    The October 2007 fires in southern California burned hundreds of thousands of acres and destroyed thousands of buildings, and libraries were among those threatened. Helen Fried of the Orange County Public Library and Margaret Todd of the County of Los Angeles Public Library spoke to AL Focus on October 26, as the fires were still raging.

    November 6, 2007
  • Rod Hersberger & Marilyn Hinshaw interview

    ALA Treasurer Rod Hersberger and Marilyn Hinshaw, Chair of the Budget Analysis and Review Committee (BARC), sit down for a chat with Director of Membership Development John Chrastka. Hersberger offers a glimpse of his plans for the Treasurer's Online Forum and talks about brining ALA financial information to the members in a timely fashion, while Hinshaw speaks on the complexities and responsibilities of BARC. More ALA videos available at

    October 8, 2007
  • Report from the Banned Books Read-Out!

    This report from the Banned Books Read-Out, held September 29 in Chicago, features ALA President Loriene Roy and Judith Krug from ALA's Office for Intellectual Freedom speaking on the importance of choosing your own reading material, and authors Carolyn Mackler and Chris Crutcher on how librarians "save our lives daily."

    October 8, 2007