On September 11, ASCLA launched a new website that has been under development for nearly a year. Among the new features are streamlined news, calendar, an interactive travel map, and a single location for tools and resources. While the new website will serve as the go-to location for updated information—its original website will remain to provide static information regarding committees, online learning, and membership.
ASCLA, Sept. 13
Many Americans are poorly informed about basic constitutional provisions, according to an August survey by the Annenberg Public Policy Center. The annual Constitution Day Civics Survey finds that 53% of Americans think that people who are here illegally have no rights under the Constitution. That incorrect belief is especially strong among self-identified political conservatives. Some 37% can’t name any First Amendment rights, and only 26% can name all three branches of government.
Annenberg Public Policy Center, Sept. 12
Arthur Jaros will appear in DuPage County Court on September 19 to seek reversal of the Downers Grove (Ill.) Village Council’s decision to remove him from the library board following comments he reportedly made about homosexuality at an August meeting. Village commissioners on September 5 voted 6–0 to remove Jaros as a trustee of the Downers Grove Public Library. Jaros was labeled a “book banner” by residents who recalled a 1999 incident in which he allegedly was a member of a group that tried to ban a book from a local high school.
Downers Grove (Ill.) Suburban Life, Sept. 13
YALSA has chosen Amanda Barnhart, teen librarian at the Kansas City Public Library’s Trails West branch in Independence, Missouri, as its ALA liaison to represent the division in various ALA groups and committees. The liaison position is new in YALSA, and is meant to provide a means for strengthening ties between YALSA and ALA. Barnhart will receive up to $1,000 in funds to support travel to and from conferences and will serve as the liaison through July 2018.
YALSA, Sept. 13
Paul Basken writes: “Nine months after a dogged academic librarian quietly deleted his carefully tended list shaming more than a thousand scientific journals as unscrupulous, the Beall’s List Murder Mystery remains unsolved. Why, after toiling so hard for five years—and creating a resource cherished by scientists wary of exploitative publishers—did the University of Colorado at Denver’s Jeffrey Beall abruptly give it all up? Who, or what, forced his hand? There are several prime suspects.”
Chronicle of Higher Education, Sept. 12
If you need a bit of financial help to get through your graduate program, scholarship funds are now available. ALA has more than $300,000 available to students who are studying in library science or school library media programs at the master’s degree level. Scholarships range from $1,500 to $7,000 per student per year. They include scholarships for students interested in children’s librarianship, youth librarianship, federal librarianship, new media, and library automation. The deadline to apply is March 1, 2018.
Office for Human Resource Development and Recruitment, Sept. 13
“We surprise people right off the bat, standing in front of this wonderful, family-friendly ice cream shop and saying that it used to be a brothel,” says Scott Brouwer, archivist at La Crosse (Wis.) Public Library. The reveal is part of the Dark La Crosse Trolley Tour, done in partnership between LCPL and the La Crosse County Convention and Visitors Bureau. It began as a walking tour and now takes area residents and tourists on rides through the city’s seedier past.
American Libraries Trend, Sept./Oct.
Neil J. Rubenking writes: “A criminal hacking team that gets access to your personal information typically tries to squeeze as much benefit as possible from its unauthorized access, and as quickly as possible, preferably before you hear about it, such as when a breach like the Equifax hack goes public. Just what can you do once you realize that you’ve been hacked? If you’re lucky, your bank will detect fraudulent activity, decline the charges, and issue you a new card. That’s a pain, but it’s better than letting hackers buy a Caribbean vacation with your credit.”
PC Magazine, Sept. 12
Margaret Heller writes: “Libraries rely on exceptions to copyright law and provisions for fair use to provide services. Any changes to those rules have big implications for the services we provide. With potential changes coming in an uncertain political climate, I would like to take a look at what we know, what we don’t know, and how it’s all related. Each piece as it currently stands works in relation to the others, and a change to any one of them changes the overall situation for libraries.”
ACRL TechConnect Blog, Sept. 12
Terry Hong writes: “Sometimes—way too often, these days—reality is just too real. So into the beckoning pages of books I retreat. Novels about bookstores are ultra-alluring, since the possibility of escapist respite is virtually limitless. Here are 12 recent titles celebrating those literary havens.” For example, The Bookseller by Cynthia Swanson, about Kitty Miller who co-owns the Sisters’ Bookshop in Denver with her best friend Frieda, which will soon be a film starring Julia Roberts.
The Booklist Reader, Sept. 12
Former ALA Executive Director Keith Michael Fiels was inducted August 17 as an Illinois Library Luminary by the Illinois Library Association. This honor roll for Illinois libraries recognizes outstanding voices in the library community. Fiels served at ALA from 2002 to 2017. Prior to coming to ALA, he served as director of the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners. Over the course of his 48-year career, he has worked as a public librarian, school librarian, and independent library consultant.
Illinois Library Association
M. Ryan Hess writes: “Sitting in the heart of Silicon Valley, Palo Alto (Calif.) City Library is taking the lead in exploring the future of library services. As part of its mission to ‘inspire and nurture innovation, discovery, and delight,’ the library explored how cutting-edge technologies like robots and 3D design can be applied in libraries. The first experiment was designed around a telepresence robot known as BEAM; the second involved a 3D design coach program.” Watch the video (4:37).
Public Libraries Online, Sept. 12