Jenny Rosenfeld writes: “Recently, the interlibrary loan staff at the Loyola Notre Dame Library tracked the locations around the world from which they borrow and lend library materials. The exercise was prompted by a student who, after being shown ILL by staff members Kate Strain and Zach Gahs-Buccheri, asked, ‘What’s the farthest library that you’ve gotten an item from?’ Turns out the answer was the Dalton McCaughey Library at the University of Melbourne in Australia, which is 10,038 miles from Loyola in Baltimore. What a great example of how ILL makes us one big library with endless shelves.”
OCLC Next, Nov. 14
LITA and Baker & Taylor are accepting applications for the Christian Larew Memorial Scholarship for those who plan to follow a career in library and information technology, demonstrate potential leadership, and hold a strong commitment to library automation. The successful applicant will receive a $3,000 check and a citation. The application form is open through March 1.
LITA, Nov. 14
Carrie Smith writes: “Think election season is the only time libraries can engage communities with elected officials? Think again. Not only have some libraries taken year-round approaches to civic engagement, but some also have broken with tradition to create memorable opportunities for interaction. At Manitowoc (Wis.) Public Library, which hosts a free carnival every August, local representatives such as the mayor and aldermen hop into a dunk tank or serve as targets for the water-balloon catapult. Youth Services Manager Julia Lee says getting local celebrities in the dunk tank helps break down barriers between residents and officials.”
American Libraries feature, Nov./Dec.
Anne Ford writes: “Finding love after 50 isn’t always easy. Social norms change, life events like divorce and death leave emotional scars, and it sometimes feels as if the rest of the world has already paired off. Fortunately, there’s the library—not as a place to make romantic connections per se, but as a resource for older adults who want to learn how to navigate the world of online dating. Several public libraries have begun offering programs that help older patrons safely and effectively meet potential partners on the internet. Among those are Westport (Conn.) Public Library, Skokie (Ill.) Public Library, and Billings (Mont.) Public Library.”
American Libraries Trend, Nov./Dec.
The New York Times Magazine editors write: “The internet hasn’t lived up to all our dreams for it. But neither, perhaps, does it conform to the nightmares (of misinformation, of alienation, of exploitation) that so many people spin around it now. In this special issue of the New York Times Magazine, we’ve tried to see the internet and its likely future as best we can, from as many angles as we can, in the hope that—after decades of imagining it as a utopia, and then a few years of seeing it as a dystopia—we might finally begin to see it for what it is, which is a set of powerful technologies in the midst of some serious flux.”
New York Times Magazine, Nov. 14
Joe Puccio writes: “In January 2017, the Library of Congress adopted a set of strategic steps related to its acquisition of digital content as part of its strategic goal to ‘Acquire, preserve, and provide access to a universal collection of knowledge and the record of America’s creativity.’ There have been many notable achievements since then, including registration of newspaper e-prints by the Copyright Office, an increase in the number of publishers participating in Cataloging in Publication, a first-ever formal assessment of library’s purchased and leased electronic resources collection, and a model electronic resources license agreement.”
Library of Congress: The Signal, Nov. 14
The Jeopardy! rematch we’ve all been waiting for is finally happening: Las Vegas sports gambler James Holzhauer will once again get to face Emma Boettcher, the University of Chicago librarian who took down Holzhauer in the middle of a 32-game winning streak. Boettcher won her semi-final game in the show’s Tournament of Champions on November 11 and Holzhauer did the same on November 12. It will be a two-day final on November 14 and November 15. The winner—who will be determined by the two-day totals in those games—will receive $250,000, second place gets $100,000, and third gets $50,000.
USA Today: For the Win, Nov. 13
ACRL invites proposal submissions for the ACRL 2021 Conference, “Ascending into an Open Future,” to be held April 14–17, 2021, in Seattle. ACRL 2021 offers a variety of options for participation and features nine session formats to suit a wide range of presentation and learning styles to share your research and creative endeavors with your colleagues. Contributed paper, panel session, preconference, and workshop proposals are due May 8, 2020. Lightning talk, digital poster session, roundtable discussion, TechConnect, and virtual conference webcast proposals are due October 9, 2020. Submit proposals via the online form.
ACRL, Nov. 13
On November 13, President Donald J. Trump announced his intent to nominate Crosby Kemper III, director of the Kansas City (Mo.) Public Library, to be the next director of the Institute of Museum and Library Services. US Sen. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.) recommended Kemper for the position, saying that Kemper “has a deep-seated appreciation for the historical, cultural, and educational value museums and libraries have in local communities.” ALA endorsed Kemper’s nomination, supporting a swift and unanimous confirmation in the Senate. The IMLS director is an executive appointment of four years.
ALA Public Policy and Advocacy Office, Nov. 13
Jennifer Snoek-Brown writes: “It often happens that I’m watching a movie, and—surprise!—a reel librarian pops up, with no warning or foreshadowing, in a library scene. This is what happened when one night, my husband and I decided to watch A Simple Favor (2018), a black comedy starring Anna Kendrick and Blake Lively. Corinne Conley plays the role of the librarian, with glasses and dressed in a floral button-front shirt and dark cardigan. Stephanie (played by Kendrick) is in a library looking for all the Wayne County arson-related news items for the last 20 years. The librarian begins the reference interview with ‘What do you want, cupcake?’”
Reel Librarians, Nov. 13
A criminal charge against a woman accused of failing to return two library books was dismissed November 12. Mindy Jones was charged with misdemeanor failure to return rental property from the Charlotte (Mich.) Community Library. A warrant was issued for her arrest in 2017, but Jones said she did not learn of it until late October. She requested entry into a county diversion program and agreed to pay restitution to the library. Jones said she found the books on her son’s bookshelf and that she had never received a bill or overdue notice. The library posted a statement on Facebook November 5, after Jones’s story was picked up by national media outlets.
Lansing (Mich.) State Journal, Nov. 13
The Huntington Library, Art Museum, and Botanical Gardens in San Marino, California, has acquired two collections related to abolition and slavery in the US. The first collection includes the papers of Zachariah Taylor Shugart (1805–1881), a Quaker abolitionist who operated an Underground Railroad stop at his farm in Cass County, Michigan. The centerpiece of the collection is an account ledger that contains the names of 137 men and women who passed through Shugart’s farm while trying to reach freedom in Canada. The second collection is the archive of documents on slaves used by the Dickinson and Shrewsbury saltworks in Kanawha County, West Virginia.
The Huntington, Nov. 13