American Libraries

Articles from Vol. 39, No. 10, November

Access for All: Building Bridges to Information through Services
Access to information. How often have you used that phrase? What does it mean when you say it? The phrase resembles a Rorschach inkblot test, capable of many different meanings. During recent international conference visits, I have learned how its...
After-School Success Stories; in Six Years of Trial and Error, a Grassroots Effort to Save a School District Has Blossomed into a Thriving After-School Program Helping Thousands of At-Risk Students
Ohio's Maple Heights School District was in a state of academic emergency. The district scored abysmally on its 2002-2003 year-end report card, meeting only 6 of 22 minimum requirements on the Ohio Department of Education's state indicator scale. Graduation...
ALSC Institute Opens with a Utah "How Ya Doin'?"
What can be better than a lively library conference with fabulous speakers, down-home hospitality, tons of networking opportunities, and a bit of silliness? A "Yee-haw!" welcome by Provo (Utah) City Library Director Gene Nelson, wearing traditional...
Are You Following Me? in Today's Libraries, Training Is Paramount, and That Calls for Leadership
Mary Lou Brown works on a busy circulation desk. One minute she is teaching patrons to use the new self-checkout stations, the next minute she is answering questions about how to download audiobooks to an iPod. Later this afternoon Mary Lou will go...
Bankers in Books
I have one piece of advice for ail the politicians and pundits who have I been expressing incredulity over how this country's financial managers could possibly screw up so badly: read more fiction. Bankers in literature are almost uniformly bad guys....
Book Festival Draws 120,000
More than 120,000 book lovers gathered September 27 on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., for the eighth annual National Book Festival, organized and sponsored by the Library of Congress and hosted by First Lady Laura Bush. [ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]...
Border Location Offers Unique Opportunities for Reforma Attendees
President Luis Chaparro called the 452 attendees including 61 exhibitors, at the Reforma National Conference part of an extended family. The gathering of the American Library Association's affiliate organization, the National Association to Promote...
CMS for Next-Gen Websites Using Drupal to Manage Library Web Content
The past few years have seen tremendous growth in what is possible for a library's web presence. No longer limited to static websites, we can now make our sites more dynamic, more participatory, and easier for staff to manage. And it doesn't necessarily...
Economic Uncertainty Spreads to Library Endowments
The stock market losses that have recently hit global markets might be taking some carefully stewarded library endowments along for the ride. Even as the market began its dramatic mid-September seesaw of alarming drops and partial recoveries, two...
Encyclopedic Focus; A Classic Reference Resource Brings Entries Alive
Which came first, the chicken or the egg? This conundrum is among the hundreds of questions World Book plans to answer via its new World Book Explains videos. Developed in response to questions posed by tweens and teens, the videos, as World Book's...
EPA Reopens Five Shuttered Libraries
The five Environmental Protection Agency libraries whose closures in 2006 as part of a cost - cutting measure by President Bush elicited a storm of controversy (AL, Oct. 2006, p. 8) reopened September 30. In a report to Congress submitted in March,...
Giving Thanks: An Unexpected Note Can Make All the Difference
Not long ago, I was recalling a time when someone had gone out of her way to make a big difference in my life. I had thanked her at the time, but that was several years ago. On impulse, I jotted a quick note reminding her of the kindness, and reiterating...
Google Stops: A Cautionary Tale Warns of Technological Hubris
The Machine Stops" is a cautionary tale about overdependence on technology. In a future world, all of humanity lives, literally, within the confines of the Machine, which provides for all of their needs, both bodily and mentally. All communication,...
How the World Sees Us
"I wanted to be a children's book author and a librarian." Actress JENNIFER GARNER, reminiscing about her childhood while visiting her home town of Charleston, West Virginia, People, Sept. 20. "When you spend all your money on bombs, you don't...
It's Never Too Late to Retool: An Uprooted Public Librarian Adjusts to a High-Tech Academic Environment
Much has been written about teaching information literacy to library users and about in-service training for library professionals and paraprofessionals, but little has been said about mid-career librarians who must retrain when moving from an environment...
Learning the Hard Way
Where is the outrage?" asked Garrison Keillor in his syndicated column, calling the federal bailout of the financial market "a calamity people accept as if it were just one more hurricane.... It wasn't their money they were playing with," he added....
Libraries Reach out after Hurricane Ike
Just two weeks after New Orleans evacuated in anticipation of Hurricane Gustav (AL, Oct., p. 29), Hurricane Ike's Category 2 force slammed across the Louisiana and southeast Texas coasts after pummeling the Caribbean. Ike left 140 people dead and caused...
Money Watch: ALA's Financial Forecast Remains Good-For Now
Most everyone is concerned about the world financial crisis and how it is affecting us personally, at our places of employment, and within the American Library Association. We wish we knew how bad the crisis is going to get and when it will be over....
Nampa Board Restores Joy of Sex Books
The Nampa (Idaho) Public Library board voted unanimously September 5 to return to open circulation The Joy of Gay Sex and The New Joy of Sex in the latest move in a two-year battle between area social conservatives and freedom-to-read advocates regarding...
Not Just the Facts: Toward a Library and Information Humanities
When I explain to people that I am studying library and information science, I always cringe a little at the word "science." It seems like such a misleading name for the field, given that so much of what librarians engage in--from reader's advisory...
Public Library Ratings Corrected
Technology is a wonder; it can also be a horror," says Thomas J. Hennen Jr., whose eighth public library rankings article appeared in the October issue of American Libraries (p. 56-61). Just after the issue went to print, Hennen discovered an unfortunate...
Sacramento Director Announces Retirement
Ending a seven-year tenure amid accusations of mismanagement, Sacramento (Calif.) Public Library Director Anne Marie Gold announced at a September 25 meeting of the library's governing board that she would retire, effective December 1. A matter-of-fact...
The Bandwidth That Binds: Desperately Seeking Succor from 24/7 Surfing
Hi, my fellow librarians, my name is Will, and I need your understanding, support, and kindness. Here's my story. 1 have had an internet addiction now for eight months. The only reason that I decided to buy a computer and subscribe to an online...
Timber Funds Won't Bail out Libraries
Among the extras added into the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008, which President Bush signed October 3, was nearly $1.7 billion in federal timber payments. The funds had been sought by four economically devastated Oregon counties dependent...
Trenton Library Plans to Close All Branches
A potential citywide budget deficit of as much as $28 million has led the Trenton (N.J.) Public Library to develop plans to close all four of its neighborhood branches. Library Director Kimberly Bray announced the library board's decision, which followed...
Virginia High - Schoolers Rally for Gay - Cure Books
Groups of students and parents staged rallies and presented some 85 books on homosexuality from a conservative Christian perspective for inclusion in the libraries at 11 schools in the Fairfax County (Va.) Public School District October 2. The inspiration...