American Libraries

Articles from Vol. 37, No. 3, March

A Critical Need: Libraries Can Play a Crucial Role in Helping People with Substance Abuse Problems
"I think I need some help. My son may have a drinking problem and I just don't know what to do!" If this woman were in your library, what could you, as a librarian, do to help her? And for that matter, should a person with this kind of problem turn...
A Dear John Letter
Was it coincidence or fate? I arrived in San Antonio late Thursday night, January 19, to cover the ALA Midwinter Meeting. The next morning, I walked down to the convention center to check out the lay of the land. No sooner did I enter the building...
ALA Council: Councilors Remember the ALAmo
During the Midwinter Meeting sessions of ALA's Council, held January 22, 24, and 25, Executive Director Keith Michael Fiels observed that the number of councilors is identical to the number of the defenders of the Alamo. Happily, ALA's governing body...
ALA Executive Board: Tackling a Torrent of Topics in Texas
At its Midwinter Meeting sessions, held January 20, 23, and 25 in San Antonio, the ALA Executive Board tackled a broad array of management issues ranging from the Association's fiscal priorities to this summer's Annual Conference in New Orleans. ...
ALCTS Celebrates 50 Years
The year was 1957. Dwight Eisenhower was president of the United States. It was the time of Father Knows Best and Gunsmoke, mimeograph machines, typewriters, twin beds, and bloodless movie gunfights, the beginning of the Civil Rights Movement. Sputnik...
Association for Library and Information Science Education: The Eyes of Texas on LIS
Nearly 450 members of the Association for Library and Information Science Education met January 16-19 in the Omni Hotel in San Antonio, Texas, for their annual conference. The overall attendance was down a bit from Boston in 2005, although individual...
Candidates for ALA Presidency Debate at Midwinter Forum: Questions Prompt Discussion, Agreement on Dues, Diversity, Divisions, and Other Key Issues
The nominees for 2006-2007 ALA president shared their views with some 150 people at a presidential candidates forum January 21 during the ALA Midwinter Meeting in San Antonio. Selected by the ALA Nominating Committee, their nominations were approved...
Curious Incident Triggers Curious Reaction in Texas
The selection of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time for the 2006 Galveston County (Tex.) Reads event has resulted in the mayor of a Houston exurb announcing that the board of his community library would reconsider the book's addition...
Currents: Professionals on the Move
Endeavor Information Systems of Des Plaines, Illinois, has named Geoffrey Adams director of archive solutions. * Amani Ayad has joined the Lincoln Trail Libraries System in Champaign, Illinois, as diversity consultant. * January 15 Judy Bar-Shimon...
Datebook: Opportunities for Continuous Learning
ALA CHAPTER CONFERENCES Mar. 28-30: Louisiana Library Association Conference, Lafayette Cajundome Convention Center, Lafayette. "Libraries: Louisiana's Pearls of Wisdom." Contact: 337-550-7890; office@llaonline.org; www.llaonline.org/ne/lla_conference.php....
Dozens of British Libraries May Close
Approximately 50 British libraries--many in small or isolated communities--could close this year as local governments in at least six counties look for ways to cut costs or more effectively allocate funds they spend on libraries. Councilors in Devon...
Exploring a Rich History
Black History Month, created in 1926 by Carter G. Woodson, was filled this year with a variety of activities and displays that honored the achievements and contributions of African Americans. Musician Wynton Marsalis joins Archivist Heather Lyle...
Filter Flap Confounds CIPA-Compliant Library
A Pittsfield, Massachusetts, man was charged February 3 in New London (Conn.) Superior Court with possession of child pornography. The charges filed against Christopher J. Zamisz, 37, were the result of a two-month investigation into whether a patron...
Finding the Blood in the Turnip: A Grassroots Group Unearths Alternative Revenue Streams When Traditional Sources Dry Up
August 23, 2005, was opening day for the Sonoma Valley (Calif.) Unified School District, but only partially for its school libraries. The previous summer, the district had suffered unforeseen budget shortages amounting to nearly $500,000. Officials...
Global Reach
SCOTLAND Historians and classical scholars at Edinburgh University are warning that priceless artifacts and records of the city's past are at risk in the city archive because of inadequate security and storage. Their concern echoes that of Edinburgh...
Google Defies DOJ Demand for Search Records
The Department of Justice sought a court order January 18 from the U.S. District Court of Northern California demanding that Google comply with its August 2005 subpoena for millions of randomly selected online search records held by the Silicon Valley--based...
Grassroots Report: The Ultimate in Library Programming
From a live boa constrictor to Irish dancers "before they were the thing," Amherst (N.Y.) Public Library Director Mary F. Bobinski has seen it all ... and shared these sights with viewers of her long-running Library Limelight community television program....
Internet Librarian: It's All about
Regular readers of these exquisitely honed little dollops of librariana will have long since worked out that I have an ego as big as all outdoors. Fear not, however. Despite the title, this column isn't about me; it's about you. Well, OK, it's about...
Library Insists FBI Provide Warrant in Alleged Terror Threat
Police and FBI officials rushed to the Newton (Mass.) Free Library January 18 after determining that an alleged threat against Brandeis University had been e-mailed from one of the library's computers. But Library Director Kathy Glick-Weil and Newton...
Loriene Roy: Candidate for ALA President
As ALA president I will work with you to represent the contributions of libraries and librarians to the world. The eldest of eight children, I was born in Carlton, a rural town bordering a reservation in northern Minnesota. I have lived a life of...
Next Generation Librarianship: Examining the Unique Role of GenX and GenY Librarians Can Strengthen Our Professional Future
Why is next generation librarianship an issue now? Successive waves of younger librarians have, of course, always moved into library workplaces, interacted with colleagues and patrons from different generations, and faced similar issues. Several factors,...
Obituaries
Grant Burns, assistant library director at the University of Michigan at Flint, died suddenly January 5. Burns authored several books, including Librarians in Fiction: A Critical Biography and The Railroad in American Fiction: An Annotated Bibliography;...
Patriot Act Compromise Announced
Four Republican senators who blocked legislation to renew the USA Patriot Act last year over what they said was a lack of protection for civil liberties announced February 9 that they had reached an agreement with the White House on a revised bill....
Petition Candidates Seek Council Posts
In addition to the candidates for ALA Council listed in the December 2005 American Libraries (p. 9), 24 individuals have petitioned to be included on the ballot. According to ALA's Governance Officer, petition candidates are: * Rosie L. Albritton,...
President's 2006 and 2007 Budgets Boost Library Funding
Shortly after signing into law a 2.7% increase in funding for library programs at the Institute of Museum and Library Services for FY 2006, President Bush proposed additional increases for such programs in his 2007 budget, released February 6, increasing...
Quick Bibs: High-Octane Thrillers
When readers' advisors talk about appeal factors in fiction, they often refer to pace. Do you like novels to be fast-paced, or do you prefer a more leisurely gait, allowing time for the characters to muse on themselves and the world around them? A...
Remembering Gerald Hodges
Sadness and tears were all I could feel upon learning of Gerald's untimely illness and death (Feb., p. 5). Many of us in the prayer circle were hoping against hope that somehow the inimitable Gerald would beat his illness. How could he not? The man...
San Antonio: Spotlight Shifts from Education for Librarianship to Cuba; Some Surprises Awaited Conferees, Including ALA President Michael Gorman, Whose Guest Speaker Delivered an Unexpected One-Two Punch
It was a conference full of surprises for the 11,084 attendees in San Antonio for ALA's Midwinter Meeting, January 20-25: surprisingly complicated discussions about the need for an Association dues increase, surprise youth media award winners, a surprise...
School Librarians Drop Consent-Policy Appeal
Library media specialists at the Irving (Tex.) Independent School District have agreed to withdraw their appeal of a policy requiring middle-school students to get parental permission before checking out When Jeff Comes Home. Superintendent Jack Singley...
Straight Answers from Vartan Gregorian
Arguably the leading authority on library philanthropy, Vartan Gregorian spent eight years as president of New York Public Library (1981-1989) and nine years as president of Brown University (1989-1997). He is currently president of the Carnegie Corporation...
Task Force Recommends D.C. Library Overhaul
The District of Columbia Public Library needs more than $450 million in improvements--including a new $280-million headquarters library, 400 new computers, and replacement of half its collection over the next three years--according to a draft report...
Technically Speaking: Everything Was Bigger-Except the News
Everything is bigger in Texas--except, it seems, for the library automation news. The floor at the ALA Midwinter Meeting in San Antonio seemed big and busy, and all the vendor wares that conference attendees are used to seeing were in play. But the...
The Fiscal State of the States; Forecast for 2007: Barometer Steady; Windfalls Possible
Arizona is in a time of surplus combined with officials wishing to reduce taxes," observed State Librarian GladysAnn Wells February 2 in answer to an American Libraries funding-outlook survey. Of the 20 respondents to AL's January 30 request for information...
The Greatest Challenge
Eminent library historian and educator Wayne Wiegand has pointed out that libraries have three principal and enduring missions--giving access to recorded knowledge and information in all formats, being central and essential presences in the communities...
Thus Said ... How the World Sees Us
"The movie (90% Hollywood, 10% real) does not even come close to describing the actual security protections we give to the 'Charters of Freedom.' ... P.S. My personal favorite title for any sequel: Raiders of the Lost Archives." Archivist of the United...
William J. Crowe: Candidate for ALA President
My perspective as a candidate for ALA president is informed by almost 40 years of experience. To learn more about my career and me than space here allows, including a link to my resume and an interview done by the local newspaper, visit my blog at...
Will's World: Confessions of a Footnote Enthusiast
I was a history major in college. Combine that with a library science background and you get an academic pedigree that is conducive to footnote fetishism. Early on, all students of history are taught to distinguish between primary and secondary sources...
Working Knowledge: Seeking the Land of Plenty (of Jobs)
Erin Brooks did everything right, but she is still unemployed. With many years of work experience in a nonlibrary field, she timed her MLS degree to coincide with the building or expansion of several public libraries in her region of Texas. While a...