American Libraries

Articles from Vol. 25, No. 8, September

Abandoning the Comfort Zone: Making Medical Reference Accountable
The scope of materials and services provided by public libraries has undergone a profound and startling change during the past 25-30 years. One need not engage in a literature search, however enlightening and stimulating, to make such an observation....
Failed Sale of Faxon Turns Concern into a Vigil
Ongoing concern about the fiscal stability of the Faxon Company became a day-to-day vigil in early August when the anticipated sale of the firm to R.R. Donnelley and Sons fell through. Despite the subscription agency's $300 million-per-year core U.S....
Family Reunion with a Professional Agenda: A Conference of African-American Librarians
For many, it was like a family reunion: greeting folks they hadn't seen in two years or more, getting dressed up for a fancy turkey dinner, then watching the youngsters put on a musical show. The second National Conference of African-American Librarians,...
In Hot Miami Beach: More Reports from Annual Conference
By the end of Annual Conference every attendee has developed a capsule characterization or critique to answer the inevitable question from colleagues who didn't attend: "How was ALA?" Sadly, many of the thumbnail reviews of ALA's 113th Annual Conference,...
Maryland Libraries Offer Residents Free Internet Access
For years, librarians have been pondering how to make sure their patrons don't get left behind on the developing information highway. Now Maryland's state library system has taken an ambitious first step with a groundbreaking program to provide free...
My Shoot with Shaquille; and ALA Staffer Goes Behind the Scenes at an ALA Celebrity Photo Shoot
One of the most frequent questions I'm asked as press officer of ALA's Public Information Office is, "Do you get to meet the stars who pose for ALA's celebrity posters?" Unfortunately, the answer almost always is, "No, we talk to agents but don't travel...
Quality Time in the Exhibits
Apart from the buzz among the technocrats about the consolidation of Dynix and Notis Systems into Ameritech Library Services (ALS) (see box) and the broad concern that reduced attendance would hurt exhibits traffic, it was business as usual in the...
S. Dak. State Lib. Stays Open, but Future Is No "Sure Thing." (South Dakota Voters Must Approve Constitutional Amendment to Legalize Video Lottery)
What a difference a week makes! On Aug. 11, State Librarian Jane Kolbe calmly told AL she would "lock the doors" of the South Dakota State Library on Aug. 16 to comply with a directive from Gov. Walter D. Miller. All 46 members of the staff would be...
Self-Censorship Starts Early; a Library School Student Learns an Unexpected Lesson When She Tackles a Touchy Topic
Until recently, I associated censorship with angry parents or pressure groups challenging library materials they deemed immoral or harmful to their values. But last year, when I was a graduate student at the University of Wisconsin/Madison library...
Self-Study Recommendations Dominate Council, Executive Board in Miami
The first round of recommendations from the special ALA Organizational Self-Study Committee (OSSC) made its way through the second and third sessions of Council at ALA's 1994 Annual Conference in Miami Beach. As expected, they generated prolonged debate,...
Why Do Librarians Want to Be Animals
Ask a librarian how he or she would like to be reincarnated in a future life and you may well get such standard answers as "lawyer," "ballerina," "firefighter," "tennis pro," "stripper," "chocolate taste-tester," "bestselling author," or "wealthy philanthropist."...