Donna Bryson writes: “Fantasy fiction was largely dominated by white men in decades past, but today diverse writers are bringing new voices to the conversation, imagining futures based on more inclusive readings of the past and creating multiethnic worlds that can help people understand their own. Certainly, speculative fiction writers since at least Octavia Butler have looked beyond Europe for inspiration. But no longer can they be dismissed as niche. Audiences and readers are flocking to well-drawn worlds inspired by African and Asian countries.”
Christian Science Monitor, May 21
ALA Publishing eLearning Solutions will host a new session of its 90-minute workshop, “How to Respond to a Security Incident in Your Library” with Steve Albrecht on July 26. Albrecht will take the top 10 security, behavior, crime, and emergency-related incidents that occur in libraries and describe the issues, the concerns, and the responses surrounding them. Registration is through the ALA Store.
eLearning Solutions, May 25
ALA Publishing eLearning Solutions will host a new 90-minute workshop, “Sensory Storytime Programs” with Jennifer Roy, on July 25. With as many as 1 in 59 children with autism, libraries across the country have begun to recognize and meet the need for an alternative storytime offering. Roy will offer practical strategies so you can better connect with this target audience. Registration is through the ALA Store.
eLearning Solutions, May 25
The European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) takes effect May 25, and is likely to have a significant impact on the way libraries around the globe manage personal data. To help libraries consider what they need to do in response to the GDPR, the Association of Research Libraries has published an issue brief on the topic by Anne T. Gilliland, scholarly communications officer for University Libraries at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Association of Research Libraries, May 24
What role should public libraries play in civic engagement? That was the question posed to a cross-section of leading thinkers—invitees from public libraries, civic media, technology, collective action, and the arts—at a gathering hosted by the University of Washington Information School’s Technology and Social Change Group. A new TASCHA report documents the ideas shared at the forum by such participants as Brian Bannon (Chicago Public Library); An-Me Chung (Mozilla); and Diego Merizalde (Biblioteca Nacional de Colombia).
University of Washington Information School, May 25
Maura Brannigan writes: “The fashion industry has been riding a nostalgia wave for several years. For many brands of price-points high and low, this poses a challenge: to create newness while reissuing pieces it designed 10, or 50, or more years ago. How do fashion houses package their past while also contemporizing it, looking to the future? They hire an archivist like Olivia Mueller, archivist at Gap Inc., an MLS graduate of Pratt Institute with an advanced certificate in archives.”
Fashionista, May 17
Several major US media websites were blocked to Europeans on May 25 as the European Union’s new data protection law kicked in. The Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, New York Daily News, and other publications owned by Tronc chose to black out readers rather than comply with the General Data Protection Regulation. News sites owned by Lee Enterprises, which include the Arizona Daily Sun and Star papers and the Times of Northwest Indiana, were also unavailable in Europe. Websites run by media firm A+E Networks, including History.com and FYI, were also down.
CNBC, May 25
This spring, patrons of the Bristol (Ind.) Public Library got a surprise: little cat feet padding through the stacks. Page Turner, the library’s new feline, was a former stray picked up by the Humane Society until the staff found her a home. While Page Turner doesn’t need to keep the mice away, she helps in her own way. Library Adult Coordinator Dawn Powell said her presence attracts new visitors to the library. It also makes regular patrons want to settle in and stay a while.
Goshen (Ind.) News, May 24
Samantha Mairson writes: “If you’re like most MLIS candidates that I know—or you’ve graduated with the degree—you’re quietly obsessed with watching job opportunities in the field of librarianship. You track hybrid jobs that pop up because of your background or current employment. You’ve inventoried your transferable skills, scanned the job boards and listserv emails, kept your LinkedIn up to date, and finessed your résumé to the brink of madness. If you’re looking for non-librarian library jobs right now, here is a list of 45 job titles to inspire you.”
Syracuse University iSchool: InfoSpace, May 24
Susan LaTempa writes: “The two most beautiful words in the English language this month are ‘summer reading.’ They conjure up a delicious season of reading exactly what you want, when you want. Some people see vacation-reading like the road-trip diet—guilty pleasures are not only permissible, but at the top of the menu. As a uni-seasonal reader-in-the-sun (because I live in Los Angeles) and former travel writer/vacation expert, I’d like to share some hot tips for reading in the sun.”
Literary Hub, May 24
In today’s world, it’s not a matter of whether or not you engage in social media and digital marketing but how well you do it. On June 24 during the PR Forum at the ALA Annual Conference, New Orleans’ own Olivia Parker, digital associate account executive at local marketing firm Deveney, will discuss how to figure out where your library belongs in the digital space and the strategies to become an active voice in your community by understanding whom you’re talking to, who is listening, and what they want to hear.
Communications and Marketing Office, May 24
Margaret Heller writes: “You’ve seen the letters GDPR in every single email you’ve gotten from a vendor or a mailing list lately, but you might not be exactly sure what it is. With GDPR enforcement starting on May 25, it’s time for a crash course in what GDPR is, and why it could be your new best friend whether you are in the EU or not. The requirements break down this way: Any company that holds the data of any EU citizen must provide data controls, no matter where the company or the data is located.”
ACRL TechConnect, May 24