Welcome to Inside Scoop

October 9, 2008

Inside Scoop is American Libraries’ new, and first, general blog. The purpose of Inside Scoop is to offer American Libraries’ readers news and views from inside the American Library Association’s headquarters in Chicago, in combination with American Libraries Direct, our weekly electronic newsletter. As AL Editor in Chief,  I want to shorten the lag between what’s new at headquarters and when we tell you about it, between what’s hot on the ALA Council’s electronic list and when you hear about it.

 That's motivating us? Dave Pollard in his How to Save the World blog recently posted “12 Tools that Will Soon Go The Way of Fax and CDs,” with this to say about the future of organization blogging: “My own research has indicated that most people who visit [business] sites are job-seekers, the media, and competitors. A combination of marketing/PR hype, just-in-case recycled internal junk, and self-congratulation, most corporate websites are devoid of useful content, and those that do have useful stuff have it buried where it can't be found. You just can't put a filing cabinet up online and expect people to wade through it . . . .  Next-gen blogs by individual employees—personal, casual, chatty, accessible, hosted but uncensored by the employer—will soon blow even the best corporate websites out of the water.”

 Provocative stuff. While I don't expect to blow the ALA website out of the water with Inside Scoop, I do expect to offer up-to-date commentary and insight into day-to-day life at ALA in ways that our websites, press releases, and publications cannot. Joining me initially in this endeavor will be Associate Editor Greg Landgraf, bringing his perspective from "the lower floors" of what many see as the ALA ivory tower. Not coincidentally, Greg is the mover and the shaker behind Inside Scoop.

 Welcome and enjoy. We look forward to hearing from you!


LeRoy C. Merritt Humanitarian Fund

The LeRoy C. Merritt Humanitarian Fund supports librarians who are facing financial difficulty due to discrimination or because they have taken a stand in support of intellectual freedom. In this video, trustees describe the fund, and why it's needed. More ALA videos available at alfocus.ala.org.