Salt Lake City Public Library System staffers pose as characters from the Back to the Future films. From left, teen services coordinator Christina Walsh as Doc Brown, children's services coordinator Liesl Johnson as Marty McFly, and adult services coordinator Tommy Hamby as Jennifer Parker. Photo: Salt Lake City Public Library System

Marty, We’ve Got to Go Back—to the Library!

October 21, 2015

Many libraries are celebrating Back to the Future Day—October 21, 2015—with screenings of the Back to the Future trilogy and programming related to the films. The date, which is featured prominently in Back to the Future Part II, has been incorrectly depicted in internet hoaxes and memes for years. “We actually have a super fan … Continue reading Marty, We’ve Got to Go Back—to the Library!


The Mzansi Youth Choir of Soweto performs at the opening session of the IFLA World Library and Information Congress in Cape Town. Photo: George M. Eberhart

Strong Libraries, Heritage, and Crises: IFLA in Africa

September 23, 2015

The opening session on August 16 began with a dynamic performance by South African actor, poet, and author Gcina Mhlophe, one of the few women storytellers in the country. Against a backdrop of images of African scenery and wildlife, Mhlophe described how creativity and musical rhythm were born long ago on the continent, and people … Continue reading Strong Libraries, Heritage, and Crises: IFLA in Africa


Films offered by Digitalia Film Library (left, center) and India for Everyone (right).

Libraries Go to the Movies

September 22, 2015

Digitalia Film Library The Digitalia Film Library, a division of Spanish-language e-content provider Digitalia Publishing, allows libraries to bring the world of cinema to their patrons. Digitalia offers contemporary and classic fiction and nonfiction films, documentary programming, animation, and television shows from Argentina, Brazil, Cuba, France, Mexico, Spain, and the US that can be accessed … Continue reading Libraries Go to the Movies


Sonia Manzano played Mariam on Sesame Street for nearly 45 years. (Photo: Edward Pagan)

Newsmaker: Sonia Manzano

September 9, 2015

You once mentioned the importance of seeing West Side Story as a child. Could you talk about what it was like seeing representations of yourself in entertainment and what that meant to you? SONIA MANZANO: When I was a kid, there were no people of color on television or in books. And so I grew … Continue reading Newsmaker: Sonia Manzano



Joshua Davis

From Book to the Big Screen

July 1, 2015

The release detailed the efforts of four Mexican teens from an impoverished area of Phoenix, Arizona, who were competing in a national underwater robotics championship against students from MIT and other esteemed universities. He ignored the release initially, but it stuck in his mind for weeks. It was just too odd to believe. Giving in … Continue reading From Book to the Big Screen



Creating Curious Minds

April 8, 2015

Publisher Simon & Schuster announced it would donate a free ebook copy of Academy Award–winning producer Brian Grazer’s new book, A Curious Mind: The Secret to a Bigger Life (coauthored by journalist Charles Fishman), to school and public libraries for every ebook or hardcover book sold at retail, up to 5,000 copies. The book and … Continue reading Creating Curious Minds


Kody Keplinger

Newsmaker: Kody Keplinger

February 20, 2015

An avid reader, Keplinger was born with Leber’s Congenital Amaurosis, a disorder that causes legal blindness. Last fall, she wrote about the important role honors like the Schneider Family Book Awards play in ensuring people with disabilities see themselves in the stories they read. Keplinger shared her thoughts with American Libraries on the appeal of YA literature, encouragement for young … Continue reading Newsmaker: Kody Keplinger


Charlie Chaplin in The Gold Rush.

Screening Legally

February 16, 2015

Film programming can seem more complicated than other kinds of programming. How do you choose films to show? What equipment should you use? How do you market your programs? Where do you begin? The most challenging part—but in many ways the most important—is to make sure you are in compliance with the law relating to … Continue reading Screening Legally



Casey Davis (Photo: Lisa Abitbol)

Bookend: In the Vault

January 2, 2015

That’s where Casey Davis, project manager for the American Archive of Public Broadcasting at WGBH Educational Foundation in Boston, comes in. Davis (standing in the WGBH vault) works with a team at the WGBH Media Library and Archives and the Library of Congress to coordinate a national effort to identify, preserve, and make accessible as … Continue reading Bookend: In the Vault